LINCOLN–(NU Athletics Oct. 2)–The Nebraska football team worked out in full pads for two hours on Wednesday inside the Hawks Championship Center.
Offensive Coordinator Troy Walters addressed the media following practice and talked about how his receivers can take some pressure off quarterback Adrian Martinez.
“First of all, we talked about that we’re in this thing together. We’re a team, we can’t listen to the outside noise that everybody that says this and that, we have to listen to each other and we have to play together,” Walters said. “We have to understand that everyone’s job is important. In this offense, if 10 guys are doing their job and one guy is not then it’s not going to work. The interceptions, a lot of times the quarterback is going to get blamed for it. No. It’s all of us. It’s the receivers not running the right routes, or not getting the right depth, or not being detailed. It’s the running backs, the offensive line giving the quarterback a little extra time. More protection.
“We understand that we’re in this thing together. We understand the importance of practice, the detail of practice. Details of making the right decisions, details of receivers making sure we’re at the right place at the right time full speed. They’ve done a good job this week of doing that, giving the quarterback confidence that we’re going to be where we’re supposed to be. Our job as receivers is to give the quarterback an accurate picture. When he hits his third step, fifth step, whatever it is, we’re where we’re supposed to be and he trusts that we’re going to get there and right now I don’t know if there’s that trust. So we’ve worked hard this week and feel like the quarterback now understands that we’re going to be where we’re supposed to be.”
Walters went on to discuss a Northwestern defense that held Wisconsin to 243 total offensive yards last Saturday.
“Their defense is solid,” Walters said. “They get after it upfront. Very solid, very stout up front. They’re not going to let you run between the tackles much. They don’t do a whole lot but what they do, they do well. They’ve had the same staff for 14, 15 years. There’s continuity. So the guys understand the scheme and they’re not going to beat themselves. They’re not going to be out of a gap, over play. They recognize formations, they recognize plays so if a guard pulls they understand, they’ve done their scouting report and they’re going to fit it. We’ve got to be detail oriented, sound. We can’t turn the ball over, because they’re not going to beat themselves so we can’t beat ourselves.”
Walters finished by talking about what the balance between getting more receivers involved and the natural flow of the game.
“Within the structure, within the frame of the offense we’re going to try and get them more touches,” he said. “JD [Spielman] had one catch, that’s inexcusable. He’s a guy that when he gets the ball in his hands he can make plays so we have to find ways to get him the ball. Kanawai [Noa] does a good job. We’ve got to make sure we just spread the ball, within the frame of our offense. We’re not going to go outside of it and just focus on the receivers. We have to be able to run the ball better and if we run the ball better, we’ll be able to throw the ball better. So, it’s a combination of everything.”
Nebraska welcomes Northwestern to Memorial Stadium on Saturday for Homecoming. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m.