QB Kelly is determined his Ole Miss offense will improve
In its 27-16 win over Vanderbilt two weeks ago, the Ole Miss’ offense struggled to start off strong–and in the 38-10 loss to Florida Saturday, the cycle repeated itself. Following both games, quarterback Chad Kelly took the blame for his offense’s performance.
After his third-ranked Rebels (4-1, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) walked off the field inside Ben Hill Griffin Stadium Saturday night in the defeat to the 25th-ranked Gators (5-0, 3-0 SEC), Kelly was visibly disappointed. But he made it clear how his team will react, saying “We will get better, it’s only one game, it’s a long season and we will come back tomorrow and get to work.”
Kelly: “Losing is the worst thing ever”
During the post-game press conference, Kelly looked on somberly, with his head titled downwards, at times, while answering some of the questions concerning the offense’s performance inside The Swamp. The Rebels totaled 328, their lowest amount of yardage this season.
“We just weren’t executing,” said Kelly, who completed 26 of 40 passes for 259 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
The coaches had a good game plan put together for us and we just didn’t execute. Being the leader of the offense people look to me. They look to me when things go wrong and I have to do a better job making sure everyone is on the same page. It starts tonight when we watch film. We have to correct mistakes because losing is the worst thing ever.
Chad Kelly, Ole Miss quarterback
Kelly is a competitor, and when things don’t go as planned after a week of full-pad practices, he’s quick to say “It’s all on me. That’s how he has always conducted business when it comes to the sport of football.
Rebels QB insists his team “will get better”
“I am the quarterback of this offense, and I have to make sure that everybody knows exactly what they are doing on all types of plays,” he said. “We will get better; it’s one game at a time. It hurts, it definitely hurts to lose for sure. All of those guys will tell you that.”
“We will get a lot better. We are facing adversity right now, so it’s going to be a good hard week of work and we have to make sure we come back and ready to go,” the signal-caller added.
Kelly was sacked four times and spent a great deal of the night either with his back on the turf or scrambling outside of the pocket. Each time he was sacked or hit, Kelly bounced back up, heading back to the huddle for the offense’s next play as if nothing happened.
The quarterback’s toughness was never questioned and despite the Rebels’ offensive struggles on third-down (5 of 14), he kept trying to find a way to pull the offense out of the ditch.
“We thought (Chad) Kelly did a good job tonight on setting the protections and the right direction, but you just get beat in some one-on-one situations,” Coach Hugh Freeze said. “And, you have to stay off third and long. If you’re balanced and can run in some situations, you can probably stay out of some of those.”
The Rebels are preparing this week to face New Mexico State in a Homecoming game at Vaught-Hemingway.
Feature image credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk