- Jan 31, 2010
The very last play in the video is my favorite of his. And I am freaked out scared he's gonna get hurt this year.
First and foremost, Dobbs should be less vulnerable if our offensive line improves as expected. Here, another offseason in the strength and conditioning program should help all of our returning players. The only significant personnel changes are 1) returning Coleman Thomas to his natural position (center), where at the very least he should provide better depth and push incumbent starter Mack Crowder to improve; and 2) replacing a former walk-on with a missing ACL at tackle with two or three blue chip prospects (Drew Richmond, Dontavius Blair, Jack Jones). Although our offensive line will necessarily improvement by some amount since the unit was so inexperienced (and bad) last year, there is genuine reason for optimism.
Second, and on a related note, Dobbs shouldn't have to run around as much and expose himself to injury risk for the simple reason that our overall improvement as a team should let us race out to big leads in more games. A better defense means Dobbs won't have to single-handedly win shootouts like he did last year against South Carolina, while better depth at runningback (with Alvin Kamara and perhaps some of the incoming true freshman behind Jalen Hurd) should allow Dobbs to run less in our spread-option run offense.
Third, and perhaps most importantly, Dobbs is a smart, naturally-elusive player. He knows exactly how important he is to the team, so he won't take any stupid chances by fighting for unnecessary extra yards. And unlike some other notable mobile QBs in recent memory (e.g., RGIII, Michael Vick, Donovan McNabb, etc.), Dobbs seems to have a preternatural instinct to avoid taking big hits. To me, Dobbs has the same kind of smooth elusiveness that Barry Sanders used to have at runningback; he just always seems to glide through tackle attempts and fall safely to the ground at the end of every play.
So, while I agree with everybody else that Dobbs' health is of paramount importance, I'm not particularly worried about it for the reasons given above.