Where does the offense go from here? (cont.)
Because there has been a focus on running the ball, the passing/receiving game seemed secondary in most games, but that doesn’t mean it was not effective, especially with players like Caleb Wilson and Theo Howard helping to move it along.
There was some uproar at the beginning of the season as it was perceived that Wilson was not targeted enough. In the first four games, Wilson only caught for 141 yards, getting a high of 92 against Oklahoma (which means he only caught for 50 in the other three). Things changed starting with Game 5 as he had 102 yards against Washington. In every game until the end of the season, he never had anything lower than 62 yards. His biggest game came against Arizona State when he had 164 yards on 11 catches with two touchdowns. He finished the season as the Bruins’ top pass catcher with 965 yards.
The Bruins had another stellar receiver in their midst as Theo Howard, who did not drop a single ball this season, was just as effective as Wilson. Howard had made great strides this year under Kelly and the development showed. Aside from three games where he did not get more than 23 yards, in the other nine games, he did not get less than 51, peaking out at 88 against Stanford.
So with this, we can see that Chip Kelly can put together an effective run and pass game. If anything, from what we saw on a week-to-week basis, he is going to mix it up depending on his opponent. If he sees deficits in an opponents rush defense, he will run the ball down their throat. If he goes against a team that will look to stop the run, he’ll just make his team go airborne.