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Finding the perfect quarterback for Gulf Coast Offense

FSU football knows that there needs to be a certain type of signal caller who runs the offense that was brought into Tallahassee by Willie Taggart.

For the FSU football team, the soap opera surrounding the quarterback position of late has been quite interesting. With the flip of Sam Howell to North Carolina, Bailey Hockman’s transfer to NC State, and reports that Deondre Francois is testing the waters of the NFL or considering a transfer, depth at quarterback has become a primary focus in recruiting.

Jordan Travis from Louisville has already committed to Florida State, while most fans are still clamoring for Alabama’s Jalen Hurts or Georgia’s Justin Fields. But what kind of quarterback is needed for the Gulf Coast offense, which designed to be fast, heavy block with the RPO to confuse defenses and clearly involves a scheme with a running quarterback.

The answer is FSU football needs a dynamic dual-threat quarterback – an effective dual-threat quarterback who is three star would do better in this offense than a five star used to the pro system. Let 2018 be an example as the quarterback that we need has to have mobility in the pocket, be able to scramble, and execute reads correctly.

With the hire of Kendal Briles as offensive coordinator, this is more true now than ever because of the fast pace offense he runs with no playbook. One would have to look no further than to FSU football head coach Willie Taggart’s work at USF, where the Gulf Coast offense developed, for what kind of quarterback Florida State might need.

Three-star dual-threat quarterback Quinton Flowers had 8,124 passing yards in college with 71 TD’s, and 3,672 rushing yards with 41 TD’s. In Taggart’s last season at USF they went 10-2 in the regular season.

Here’s a look at the quarterbacks the Seminoles have now and potential transfers for who would fit the Gulf Coast offense best:

No. 1 – James Blackman

The rising redshirt sophomore came into Florida State as a three star pro-style quarterback and has definitely impressed with the passing side of the game. While he has 2,740 passing yards in two years at Florida State, – 65 on the ground is worrisome.

That is something that would have to be worked on due to the importance of rushing in the Gulf Coast offense. Regardless, Blackman showed last year against NC State that he can see over the line better in a way make the deep ball pass, and scramble out of the pocket.

No. 2 – Jordan Travis

Watching video of Travis online is promising – he has good pocket presence, scrambles effectively and is not afraid to use his legs to make a play (something the Noles have had to deal with this year and Francois was often the subject of criticism over).

Behind our offensive line, the ability to get out of the pocket quickly is a good thing. His high school career totals show his dual-threat capability with 905 rushing yards, 2,190 passing yards and 17 touchdowns.

No. 3 – Jalen Hurts

This is a reach because Hurts has in no way said he intends to transfer from Alabama, but in the coming days with the Crimson Tide are headed to the college playoff those rumors should heat up. What would he look like with the Gulf Coast offense anyway?

Hurts does it all with 5,626 passing, and , rushing in his career at Alabama with 23 rushing TD’s and 48 passing TD’s. He will exercise his option to run and isn’t afraid to use his legs. The bigger issue is where does that put us with Blackman.

No. 4 – Justin Fields

He would be the ideal pick of course. He’s a dynamic dual-threat quarterback who would absolutely blow open the Gulf Coast offense. He can do it all. His high school totals show 4,187 passing yards and 2,096 rushing yards.

But with the Marietta Daily Journal reporting that he has reached out to Dwayne Haskins to see whether or not he intends to go to the NFL, one can safely assume Ohio state is still in the front-running for him.

Next: Willie Taggart not calling plays is the right move

The bottom line is whether FSU football lands a four-star or five-star quarterback, it won’t matter if they don’t fit this particular offense. A gritty three star who can scramble out of the pocket and exercise his option to run would do much better under the system – just ask Quinton Flowers.

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