There have been numerous breakdowns in the Georgia Tech offense over the last several weeks, from inconsistent play on the offensive line, to an ability to get backs and receivers to make plays when absolutely needed.
Given the struggles, it is no surprise to hear coach Paul Johnson say that quarterback Justin Thomas is trying to do too much to make up for all the problems around him. You can understand why. Thomas returned to the offense as its best player, an All-ACC candidate after a monster 2014. He also returned as its most experienced skill position player. So with new faces at A-back, B-back and receiver and a struggling offensive line, Thomas has overcompensated.
While stressing that Thomas is the least of his problems, Johnson told reporters Monday, "Sometimes I think he tries to do too much as opposed to just relaxing and play, let it come to him. He’s a good enough player and good enough athlete, it’s going to come to him anyway."
He later added: "Just do your job. Now, sometimes, you can get frustrated when you’re doing your job and the other guys aren’t doing theirs and it clouds things for you, and that’s when you start pressing. But you can’t do it.”
Thomas remains his best player. So Johnson said this week in practice will be spent fixing up all the other things that have gone wrong around his quarterback. Georgia Tech was the preseason choice to win the Coastal, but it does take time to integrate six new starters in an offense that requires extreme discipline and pinpoint execution. Even as far back as the spring, Johnson said, "We’ll be hard-pressed to be better on offense than we were last year."
It sure is looking that way.