Traits Jarren Williams brings to Miami Hurricanes as starting quarterback

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - OCTOBER 13: (Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - OCTOBER 13: (Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images) /

Miami Hurricanes redshirt freshman quarterback Jarren Williams continues to be in the race to be the starter on August 24 against Florida. Williams has some of the intangibles that head coach Manny Diaz and offensive coordinator Dan Enos are looking for.

An interview with Miami Hurricanes head Manny Diaz following Saturday night’s second scrimmage of training camp indicated that the first-team quarterback is still not solidified. The offense struggled to move the ball in the first half. Redshirt freshman QB Jarren Williams continues to be in the competition.

Diaz and offensive coordinator Dan Enos had stated during the offseason that they wanted to narrow the competition at QB down to two quickly after training camp began. A starter was expected to be decided two weeks out from the Florida game which was also the date of Saturday’s second scrimmage.

From what Diaz said during a post-scrimmage interview with Miami Hurricanes play-by-play announcer Joe Zagacki the Hurricanes did not seem any closer to deciding who the first-team QB would be than they were before Saturday’s scrimmage. Williams who is thought to be a long-shot was praised by his head coach.

Williams was the only of the three QBs in the competition to be the starter that was praised by Diaz following Saturday’s second scrimmage. Diaz spoke about the QB play with Zagacki.

"“I look forward to watching the film. In the first half, nobody played well on offense. It was hard for those guys (QBs) to function and part of that was their own doing as well. I did see some guys lead some good touchdown drives in the second half. I think Jarren hit one to Will Mallory. I know we had one to K.J. Osborn at the end.”"

Reports were that Williams was the only of the three Miami QBs to play on Saturday night that did not throw an interception. Taking care of the ball is going to be critical in whoever his named the starter against Florida. Williams is the most naturally gifted passer between him, N’Kosi Perry and Tate Martell.

David Lake of Inside the U discussed Williams’ gifts as a passer and what he needs to work on in the future.

"“In terms of going through progressions and processing defenses, Williams is probably the most advanced of the three quarterbacks. It is an area he still needs to improve on, but for such a young quarterback, Williams brings an intriguing skill set to the field.”"

Manny Diaz reiterated Lake’s thoughts about Williams’ talent as a passer versus his peers at QB. Manny Navarro of The Athletic quoted the Hurricanes head coach’s thoughts on the Georgia native’s passing abilities.

"“Obviously, Jarren is a gifted passer. He has learned, I think, the maturity that comes with being a starting quarterback at a place like Miami and is becoming more and more comfortable with the offense.Jarren’s a guy that actually hit 20 miles an hour this summer (on the catapult tracking system). Jarren’s a better athlete, I think, (than) people give him credit for.”"

Williams discussed with Navarro what he feels he has to offer Miami as the starting QB. Williams was under center for only nine snaps in 2018. He completed one pass in three attempts for 17 yards in his one appearance against Savannah State last season. Williams also added a touchdown run against the Tigers.

The 6’2 signal-caller depicted what Enos expects from his QBs.

"“I feel like I’m a tough guy…I have a passion. He just told us make sure to trust the pocket. Even if the pocket collapses, stay in there the next time, because you might have a big play come out. You might have to take one to the chin. He emphasized to us really staying in that pocket and trusting the pocket.”"

Williams is the QB with the most pocket presence for Miami and the closest to a pro-style QB. He spoke to Navarro last week about what he liked about his play during the first scrimmage last Saturday.

"“I had a play-action fake and I threw a deep dig over the middle to Jeremiah Payton. There are definitely some things I can get better at. There are a lot of things I can improve on. I’m nowhere near where I want to be. But I’m going to keep working. Keep working. Perfection is my goal.”"

Williams seemed to apply what he learned from the first scrimmage and use it on Saturday night in the second scrimmage. It cannot be overstated how important it is to Diaz and his staff for his QBs to take care of the football.

Miami Hurricanes QB battle remains complicated. dark. Next

With Diaz ascending to head coach from defensive coordinator he will see the game from the defensive perspective. Diaz wants his QBs to make plays, but within the confines of the offense and making good decisions. All indications are that Williams did that Saturday night.