Kids at Kinnick: Thoughts on the Offense

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Before talking football, let me say that the football program does a great job with the Kids at Kinnick event. It was a great environment for families, a lot fun, and having half-priced concessions was amazing. My family ate lunch for $8! Awesome. I took my son and he had a blast. It was a perfect way to take my family to Kinnick without paying a huge amount and without feeling bad about missing a play or two while fathering. So kudos to whoever organizes this thing.

One more quick note. Two hours in the hot sun, right smack in the middle of nap time is a little bit too long for a 2-year old. So, I missed the last 15 minutes of practice or so. From reading other accounts, I think all I missed with the goal-line and 2-minute drills. Also, I didn't take a lot of notes and wasn't able to watch super carefully, but saw most of what was going on.

On to my thoughts.

Quarterbacks
Stanzi is still clearly number 1 at this point. He looked pretty sharp all day and made good decisions. He checked down to his running back or full back often, and was good on a lot of the shorter routes.

As Stanzi is clearly number 1, Vandenberg is clearly number 2. Vandenberg took most of his reps with the starters and did well. If he gets thrown into a game this year, a la Northwestern last year, he will definitely be ready.

Wienke started off practice well and had a beautiful long TD pass to Nordmann in the 7-on-7 practice. He struggled a little though when it was 11-on-11 and he was trying to lead the second-teamers against the starters.

Derby still looks like a freshman. He is definitely athletic and I still think he has the makings to be a good quarterback, but he needs a lot of work. He threw back-to-back picks in the 7-on-7s, the first would have been a pick-six. He made a few nice throws, but struggled on the deep ball.

Running backs
The coaches seemed to be protecting Robinson and Hampton on Saturday and really limited their reps. Paki and freshman De'Andre Johnson got the majority of the carries. Both had a couple of nice runs, but for the most part were struggling to get past the line of scrimmage. When Robinson and Hampton were in, they were much, much better, though I don't recall any long runs.

Receivers
The receivers are good and the talent is deep. There are about 6 guys who seem worthy of playing every week: McNutt, DJK, Davis, Sandeman, Chaney, and Nordmann. Sandeman and Chaney both had a lot of balls thrown their way and they made the most of it. McNutt probably had the one of the best plays in practice (at least it was my son's favorite) when he took a slant for a 50ish-yard touchdown. Davis had the only drop I can remember, but made at least 1 nice catch. Also, the Chaney end-around made an appearance, good for a few yards. DJK ran one too and was about the only "fancy" thing that Iowa's offense did.

Tight ends
The tight ends were not used very much in practice. The ball was rarely thrown their direction and there were not too many 2-TE sets. Reisner and Herman were 1 and 2. Fiedorowicz did get in there a play some, but I think he's a ways back on the depth chart for now.

Offensive Line
For the most part the defensive line was killing the offensive line, especially in the run game. On passing plays and in the blitz pick up the O-line was better. The battle for starting center is still not done as Koeppel and Ferentz lined up with the first team. Koeppel did get the first crack at it thought, if that is any indication of who has the lead (I don't think it is).

That's it for now...the defense should come tomorrow and I have a couple of pictures I'll try to post.
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