COLUMBUS — After months of deliberation, debate and even a little doubt, Ohio State finally unveiled a Tate Martell package.
And it worked.
Perhaps it’s not a finished product yet with the redshirt freshman quarterback coming off the bench in certain situations in place of Dwayne Haskins, most notably in the red zone where the Buckeyes have struggled to find a consistent answer. One of Martell’s appearances ended with Ohio State punching in a touchdown, which was a bright spot. Another was short-circuited by a penalty and another produced a fumble, although neither the flag nor the snap are necessarily his fault.
But even if it might have wound up being something of a mixed bag in terms of production, the potential with Martell having a piece of the game plan at least showed clear potential.
“I do [think that role could expand], because first of all, I think he gives you a good player,” Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said. “I give him a five on the competitor scale. He’s an elite competitor. He’s worked his you know what off.
“I do see that. He does it out here [on the practice field].”
Now Martell is taking his dual-threat athleticism and getting a chance to showcase it on the game field. And odds are he will have more opportunities waiting for him on Saturday against Maryland as the Buckeyes keep trying to build momentum down the stretch and gear up the offense for the huge test in The Game to close out the regular season.
In his latest visit to the Lettermen Row film lab for BuckIQ, former Ohio State captain Zach Boren again looked at the red-zone offense with a specific emphasis on what Martell is bringing to the Buckeyes, how that impacts a defense and what else can be built off that package of plays.
Roll the tape!
Lettermen Row senior writer Austin Ward contributed the editorial content for this post.