This week's installment of Monday Morning Quarterback dove into the surprising early season success that Tampa Bay quarterbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick has seen early on this season while filling in for the suspended Jameis Winston.
In two games this season, Fitzpatrick has thrown for over 400 yards each game (402 yards vs. the Eagles in Week 2 and 417 yards in Week 1 vs. the Saints) with a completion percentage of 75% or better while throwing 8 touchdowns and just one interception.
Heading into this season, head coach Dirk Koetter, who had traditionally handled the play calling duties, handed them off to Todd Monken, who of course had worked as the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State under Mike Gundy before going on to be the head coach at Southern Miss for a few seasons prior to joining the Bucs.
In talking with Gundy, MMQB was able to uncover one of the keys to one of the most consistently explosive offenses in college football, and how that is now being seen on Sundays in the NFL.
“Our goal is to scare the defensive coordinator. If we don’t scare the defensive coordinator, the play-caller from the other team during the game, then we’re not doing our job. That’s the way we look at it at Oklahoma State. We want them to be concerned throughout the game that we’re going to throw the ball over their head, all during the game."
The threat of unorthodox shots down field, regardless of the down and distance or where the ball is on the field is something Gundy and his staff believe can be a huge advantage offensively. That certainly is connected to the success of Fitzpatrick so far this year.
Gundy shared that the majority of guys in the NFL are starting to get on board with what teams like Oklahoma State is doing at the college level, and guys that aren't would be smart to get on the train soon.
“The majority of the guys are using our stuff, they’re using college stuff. They’re watching tape and taking our plays, period. Now, they might not admit it, because they’re supposed to the best at who they are and what they do. Look at the Patriots, look at the Chiefs, look at the Eagles in the Super Bowl—that’s all college stuff. That’s not NFL stuff. The teams in the NFL, if they don’t get on board and start doing some of the things that we do in college, they’re gonna get smoked.”
Head here to read the full piece, always full of great information, including what Gundy thinks about what he sees in the Bucs from his former play caller.