Ohio State Football: Braxton Miller's 3 Biggest Weaknesses

Tim Bielik@bielik_timSenior Analyst IFebruary 20, 2013

Ohio State Football: Braxton Miller's 3 Biggest Weaknesses

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    Braxton Miller took an enormous leap from his freshman to sophomore season in his first season under Urban Meyer.

    He is among the most dangerous dual-threat quarterbacks in college football and the biggest reason why the Ohio State Buckeyes had an undefeated season in 2012.

    That said, Miller is still very far from a finished product.

    He still has things in his game he can really improve on to take himself to yet another level. Here are three of the biggest weaknesses he still has to overcome.

Avoiding Big Hits

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    Several times this season, Braxton Miller took vicious hits and looked to be in enormous pain, especially in the Purdue win where he was dragged down by a hard horse-collar tackle.

    Somehow, he managed to escape major injury. But he really needs to learn how to protect his body from those hits, either by sliding, diving or running out of bounds.

    Miller is one of the most dangerous runners in the game and has the ability to make people miss with regularity. But he is no asset if he's too banged up to play.

    He will still take his fair share of hits, but needs to learn to minimize those as much as he can.

Inconsistent Passing

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    Miller grew by several big steps as a passer. But he was a very inconsistent passer—not just from game to game, but within the game as well.

    It's common for young quarterbacks to have inconsistency throwing the ball, especially with someone like Miller who is trying to refine his mechanics.

    When he was good, he was good. When he wasn't, it was pretty bad. There was little, if any, middle ground.

    As Miller continues to grow and work with offensive coordinator Tom Herman, he will focus more on his mechanics as he tries to be a more consistent thrower.

Pre-Snap Recognition

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    Defenses slowly figured out over the course of the year that blitzing Braxton Miller is a good way to slow him down.

    Twice against Michigan he took hard hits on blitzes that he either did not pick up pre-snap or failed to make the hot-read throw. That also ties back to taking less big hits if possible.

    Most of what he has to work on as he continues to pick up the offense will be things that happen before the snap, when he can audible in and out of certain plays. He had chances to do that over the course of his sophomore season and should see that ability expand as a junior.

    Running an up-tempo offense is most effective if the QB can make the right read and have an idea of what he wants to do with the ball before the snap.

    That's the next phase of Miller's mental growth as a quarterback.


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