The quarterback situation at Auburn is a key point of emphasis for head coach Bryan Harsin, who enters his second year at the helm. One player who is taking more mental reps than physical reps is Texas A&M transfer Zach Calzada.
The Tigers are being very cautious with Calzada, who suffered a shoulder injury last year, but they know he will need to be a full participant come summer workouts and fall camp. Harsin spoke about Calzada’s recent progress and the benefits of watching rather than participating.
“He stands back there and he’s getting every mental rep he can possibly get. And I know it’s killing him. You can see in his eyes. He wants to compete. He wants to play, and you know he feels like he can.”
When asked when they hope to have Calzada back in full, Harsin pointed towards the summer workouts. In the mean time, Calzada will work on building relationships with the offense. But the Auburn head coach says he is not going to do anything to jeopardize Calzada’s progress.
“We’re not going to put him in a situation where that’s going to slow down the progress of his healing. He’s doing everything he can to get every mental rep, in the meetings paying attention. So come summertime when we get into those player-run practices, he’ll be ready for that. And then come fall camp, he’ll get his reps. He’ll be full-go, and we’ll see where he’s at.”
On the practice field, T.J. Finley, Holden Geriner and Robby Ashford have split a lot of the reps under center, working to get better on the field everyday. The former Aggies QB has had to content himself with learning the new style of offense and bonding with his teammates.
We have a log way to go before the start of fall camp and the 2022 season, so it’s better to be cautious with the potential starter. There were a lot of distractions on the Plains during the offseason, so the upcoming season will be very important for Harsin and his staff to get things right at certain positions, starting with the quarterback.