Two-Minute Drill: Drayton Talks Running Backs
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — With Carlos Hyde hobbled by a knee injury suffered during Ohio State’s win over UCF, the running back position has taken center stage in Columbus this week.
Quarterback Braxton Miller was asked to carry most of the load in Hyde’s absence during the second half, but the Buckeyes need someone else to step up until Hyde can return to action.
We got a chance to talk about that very issue with OSU running backs coach Stan Drayton on Monday.
Jordan Hall Cleared to Practice
* Jordan Hall has been medically cleared to play, but they don't know if he's ready to go yet.
* Hall has been running this week but he hasn't taken any live hits yet. That comes this week. They will test him out in some different situations.
* Drayton said Hall believes he's ready to go, but they have to make sure he can be the Jordan Hall they know. Said there will naturally be some rust for Hall, if he's able to go. They're going to get other guys ready, though.
* This offense is predicated on timing, so it will take a little bit for Hall to get his timing back, according to Drayton
Carlos Hyde Feeling Good
* Drayton said Carlos Hyde has a high tolerance for pain. Thinks he could play this week, but they won't let him.
* Hyde still going to prepare like he's going to play, but they will be cautious with the knee.
* Drayton said there is a big drop-off from Hyde to the other two backs because Hyde has been in the fire before.
Someone’s Got to Carry the Load
* Drayton said they plan to feature Bri’onte Dunn, Zach Boren and Rod Smith, but Philly Brown could give them a few different things.
* He said Philly Brown has grown up a lot. He's locked in and focused.
* Drayton made it clear Philly is a WR not a hybrid WR/RB, but they need to take some hits off of Braxton.
* Brown said he doesn't think he ever carried the ball 27 times in HS. Doesn't think his body could take that many. Said Braxton is a bigger guy and doesn't take a lot of hard hits because he's so athletic.
* Drayton said they think Boren can be a feature back in this offense, but he already plays so many plays. More than anyone but Braxton.
* Drayton said he did not think the performances were very good for Brionte Dunn and Rod Smith last week. Lot of mistakes.
* Drayton said botched handoff to Rod Smith falls on his shoulders. QB is making the read, RB has to take care of the handoff.
* I asked Drayton what has held Rod Smith back. Told me it just takes longer for some guys to get it. New system put him even with Dunn.
* Drayton said, physically, Rod Smith looks like Tarzan, but you don't put guys out there based on looks.
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