Miami Hurricanes offense has regressed below 2019 numbers

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 11. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 11. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The Miami Hurricanes offense that was fast and explosive early in the 2020 season has slowly regressed and gotten off to a slow start in 2021. After averaging 440.3 total yards per game in 2020, Miami is averaging 328.5 in 2021. The passing and rushing offense have both regressed in the first two games of 2021.

Miami averaged 277.3 yards passing and 163 yards rushing in 2020. In the first two games of 2021, Miami is averaging 189 yards passing and 139.5 yards rushing. Alabama and Appalachian State have been able to focus on quarterback D’Eriq King without a running back or wide receiver stepping up as a playmaker.

Cam’Ron Harris has 128 yards and one touchdown and three receptions for 14 yards in the first two weeks of 2021. With Don Chaney Jr. lost for the season, Harris is going to the Miami Hurricanes primary ball carrier at RB with King likely to see a rise in carries as he did Saturday against Appalachian State.

Miami needs more production from its RBs and wide receivers as 2021 progresses. Wide receiver

Mike Harley

who led Miami in receptions and receiving yards in 2020 and tight end

Will Mallory

who is expected to be a key receiver in 2021 are both are off to slow starts this season. Offensive coordinator

Rhett Lashlee spoke

on Monday.

"“I totally get the frustration…Trust me: Nobody’s more frustrated than me when it doesn’t work…We rarely have a run where there’s not some form of a read, whether it be an an RPO, a bubble, a hitch, something else there and so it’s not always as simple as, hey, they just ran it up the middle.In those situations, you expect them to play more of a coverage where the run box is lighter to run the football, and in a couple cases the other night the read told him to hand the ball off and we just simply didn’t block it good enough.We got five, they got five and we didn’t win, and we should be able to win 5-on-5 and get the back to the next level. He spits it for 8 or 9 yards, everybody’s going, OK, I get it. We didn’t execute that properly. There are a few times…he could’ve pulled the ball for a big play on an RPO and he handed it.We handed it into a number and we got hit for no gain…They’re dropping eight. It’s not easy to go back and throw the ball, but if you get in a situation where you give him a run-pass option, where if the box numbers give it to you you can maybe spit a run for 10 yards or if they come up you can throw it behind them in more of a run read look…That’s the idea. Obviously, it didn’t work really well the other night.”"

Lashlee and King were the major reasons Miami improved on offense from 367.4 yards per game in 2019 in the only season under former coordinator Dan Enos. Enos is now the offensive coordinator and QBs coach at Maryland after one season as the RBs coach at Cincinnati. Maryland is averaged 535 yards per game in 2021.

After gaining at least 485 total yards in its first three games of 2020, Miami has only reached that number three times in the last 10 games. Miami is averaging 68.5 plays per game after running 72.7 in 2020. The Miami Hurricanes offense is predicated on running a lot of plays and tiring out opponents.

In 2020 Miami opponents had an average of 73 plays per game. That number has increased to 74 plays per game in 2021. Miami needs the offensive to become as explosive they often were in 2020. The Miami Hurricanes offense has dropped from 15.9 plays of 10 yards or more per game in 2020 to 13.5 in 2021.

Next up for Miami is Michigan State. The Spartans have allowed only 14 plays of 10 or more yards and six of 20 or more yards in 2021. Michigan State State is 70th overall allowing 352 total yards per game. If Miami is going to score the Spartans are more likely to give up a long drive than explosive plays.

Miami needs to find a way to return to the explosive offense they were in 2020. In modern football, explosive plays, turnover margin and red zone defense are the keys to winning. Miami ranks 84th with a -0.50 turnover margin through the first two games and is 98th with a 75 percent conversion rate in the red zone.

Cam Harris will have heavier load with Don Chaney out for season. dark. Next

Miami has to become more efficient in those areas and on third down where the Hurricanes 36.67 percent conversion rate is 82nd. Lashlee has been a successful offensive coordinator at every stop he has had throughout his coaching career. Miami needs the offensive to become more efficient and explosive in 2021.