Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert told the media on Monday that he "forced" throws on two San Diego State fourth quarter interceptions last Saturday. (Photo by JJ Stankevitz)
Blaine Gabbert certainly isn’t a stranger to criticism. Despite his NFL measurables and fairly gaudy college statistics, critics continue to question his pocket awareness and propensity for forcing throws in certain situations.
Even though Gabbert threw for 351 yards, the third-highest total of his career, against San Diego State last Saturday, his two fourth-quarter interceptions remained a hot topic at Missouri’s media day on Monday.
For coach Gary Pinkel, coaching Gabbert out of making such mistakes is the next step in the continued growth of his one-time blue chip recruit. Pinkel was quick to point out that Gabbert probably should have thrown the ball away to avoid the turnovers, however, he also stressed how great of a throw Gabbert unleashed on the game-winning drive, a 20-yard completion to Jerrell Jackson just before the now-famous touchdown pass to T.J. Moe.
When it comes to taking responsibility for his play, Gabbert’s interview skills are almost as NFL-ready as his right arm. In addition to speaking frankly about his struggles against San Diego State, Gabbert also discussed the changes made at the line of scrimmage on the game-winning touchdown pass, noting San Diego State’s Cover-0 defensive call on the play: