Joker: We need to take more shots downfield

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One of the biggest differences in the Kentucky offense this season is the addition of the no huddle and the utilization of more spread formations.

Through the first two games the Wildcats are averaging just under 70 plays per game, which ranks them around the middle of the pack nationally.

Offensive coordinator / quarterbacks coach Randy Sanders noted after Saturday's game that practicing at such a high tempo doesn't allow them to get as much work done on throwing the deep ball as he would like because the receivers are gassed.

Through two games, Kentucky is ranked in the top ten nationally in completions over ten yards, but ranks towards the bottom nationally when it comes to completions of 30 or more yards. 

"I like that he's taking what he likes and what he sees," Joker Phillips said of his quarterback's progressions. "But sometimes on our all go routes, we've got to give our receivers a chance. That's the thing, give our receivers a chance, go up, and let those guys make a play for you, and it also keeps them off of you."

During his press conference yesterday, Joker noted that their longest pass play has been 23 yards, and they need to be able to successfully stretch the field vertically in order to keep defenses honest.

One drill that they have implemented to work on the deep ball is to put the receivers 30 yards down field, and once the quarterback hits the top of his drop, the receiver takes off. That allows the receivers to stay fresh, they can continue to practice at a high tempo, and quarterbacks continue to gain confidence throwing the deep ball.

This week the Wildcats take on Western Kentucky, who's defense has allowed only 17 completions (17 for 31 - 55%) through their first two games against Austin Peay and Alabama. The two will face off in Lexington at 7pm.