Oregon Ducks Football: Ducks Proving to Have Nation's Most Dangerous Offense
So much for the departure of Chip Kelly hurting Oregon's offense.
In the wake of Kelly's departure to the Philadelphia Eagles in the offseason, all the Ducks have done is score 125 points in their first two games of the 2013 campaign.
That includes a 59-10 thrashing of Virginia on Saturday, in which dual-threat quarterback Marcus Mariota and junior running back De'Anthony Thomas combined for 246 yards and four touchdowns on a mere 15 carries. Oregon punted a grand total of four times.
Thomas' 40-yard touchdown run in the first quarter to give the Ducks a 20-0 lead was only one of many highlights in the romp, via SportsCenter:
Last season, the Ducks ranked second in the nation in points per game (49.6) and first in yards per play (10.87), via CFBStats.com. Through two games this season, the Ducks are averaging 62.5 points per contest.
Granted, Oregon has yet to play a formidable foe after annihilating Virginia and Week 1 opponent Nicholls State.
But the explosiveness is still there, and that's what matters.
Beyond Mariota and Thomas' deconstruction of Virginia's defense on Saturday, freshman Thomas Tyner scampered for 51 yards and two touchdowns in his first career collegiate game...on four carries. By the way, Tyner was ranked as the No. 1 running back and No. 20 overall recruit in the 2013 class by 247Sports.com.
That was after sophomore Byron Marshall posted 124 yards and a touchdown against Nicholls State in Week 1...on eight carries.
Does Oregon have the nation's best offense?
It's about more than highlight-reel plays, though. It's also worth noting that Oregon has committed zero turnovers, thus far, in the 2013 campaign. When you have a young, explosive team like this, that also knows how to take care of the pigskin, defenses are in for a world of hurt.
By the way, talking about defenses, a good defense only gives an offense more opportunities to score.
Well, Oregon's defense forced four turnovers against Virginia on Saturday (three interceptions, one forced fumble). Each turnover was converted into seven points. That's 28 points off turnovers right there.
Junior cornerback Dior Mathis returned an interception 97 yards, per Bleacher Report:
Oregon DB Dior Mathis with the longest non-scoring INT return in Ducks history. GIF: http://t.co/2M7J7LJFdK— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 7, 2013
So, not only is Oregon's offense pretty darn good by itself, the defense only gives the unit more chances to score.
Oregon won't play a top-10 team until facing off with Stanford on Nov. 7. That will be the Ducks' first true test.
But, for now, the transition from Kelly to former offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich appears to be working out just fine.
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