Chicago Sun-Times
with Mark Lazerus

Kelly critiques Rees

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Notre Dame quarterback Tommy Rees completed 30 of 38 passes for 296 yards and two touchdowns in Notre Dame's blowout win over Maryland last week, prompting coach Brian Kelly to ask if that's about as well as the sophomore quarterback can play.

"He's really close," Kelly said. "He has not put his best game together yet. We're still not where we want to be on the vertical throws. We're better. He threw one of his best throws to Michael [Floyd] in the end zone where he actually had some air to it where Mike could go up and get the ball on a double-move touchdown.

"In terms of efficiency, 30-38 is pretty darned good. He's accurate, as we all know, and I thought he played as fast as he can play. We are trying to get him to play a little bit faster. We've worked really hard in practice over the last six weeks trying to get him to go. I'd say this was his best game as it relates to efficiency and tempo."

The next step in his maturation is vertical throws, such as the 19-yard touchdown he threw to Floyd in the second quarter.

"There are many pieces we are trying to develop with Tommy and the last piece we're trying to move up to the next level is the deep ball," Kelly said. "He's capable of throwing it but there's an evolution to that. We're spending more time on it. The last few weeks it has been a point of emphasis. We'll continue to work on it but there have been so may things that we have to work on first before we got to this. I believe this is the next step in his progression as a quarterback. If he can continue to grow in that area --- and a lot of it is technique. It's not mental. He has to do some things with his arm slot and arm angle to be more efficient. We're working on those things."

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Unfortunately, he has yet to put a game together like that against a team that matters...

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on November 16, 2011 9:29 AM.

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