A lot of the blame for the loss to Pittsburgh last Saturday was put on quarterback Logan Thomas. He threw three interceptions and completed just 14 of his 31 pass attempts— one of his worst individual performances of his career at Tech.
The offensive line had trouble blocking a very physical Pittsburgh team, causing Thomas to make hurried throws on multiple occasions. On one of the interceptions, Thomas’ arm was hit as he threw the ball, making it sail on him.
“It wasn’t all on Logan; I will take the blame for the unit," Painter said. "We should have protected him better, making him feel better in the pocket, that wasn’t his fault at all.”
After finishing off last season strong, fans were expecting to see Logan continue to improve, not take a step back. But last year, Thomas had veterans in Danny Coale, Jarett Boykin, and Chris Drager to throw the ball to, as well as the ACC Player of the Year, David Wilson, to take the pressure off of the passing attack.
Besides Marcus Davis and Dyrell Roberts, all of the other receivers and tight ends hadn't had much playing time before this season. That inexperience has shown to be more of a problem than originally thought.
One of the main reasons for his success though, was that he also had a veteran offensive line, which allowed him to sit in the pocket and make the proper reads. The Hokies were also able to rush the ball much more consistently which opened up the play action pass.
“There wasn’t a lot of uncertainty (last year), not that there is now, but there is more than there was last year,” Beamer said. “We have to try and make it easier on Logan so he can go out there and do what he does and not have to worry about the other ten guys.”
The offensive line has often been a scapegoat for fans to blame when things are going wrong.
However, with four new starters and a recent injury to guard David Wang, the line appears to be a big weakness on this year’s squad.
As for the running backs coach Shane Beamer and the rest of the Hokies coaching staff, they are sticking to the same game plan.
“We just have to execute better.”