In an interview on the LSU Sixty radio show aired Sunday evening, LSU offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger said he was pleased with quarterback Danny Etling’s performance in a 42-7 win against Missouri.
Etling directed an offense that accumulated 634 yards while completing 19 of 30 passes with no interceptions. Yet, Ensminger believes the Tigers (3-2, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) “left three touchdowns on the field.”
“I thought (Etling) missed three big, down-the-field throws that could’ve been big plays for us,” Ensminger said. “I thought he missed a couple plays in the flat to the fullback that could’ve been first downs for us.”
Etling misfired six times — three deep balls and three short/intermediate throws. Of Etling’s 59 completions this season, the Purdue transfer has connected on four passes of more than 25 yards and 14 completions of 15 yards or more.
Though Etling’s strength appears to be his ability to extend plays and take what the defense gives him, he’s averaging only 6.4 yards per attempt. However, he’s not overly concerned about the missed opportunities down the field.
“I’m not too worried about it,” he said Monday. “Been dealing with it my whole life. Just miss a couple here and there. We hit a few. It’s something you want to be 100 percent on.”
“It’s a jump shooter missing a couple of 3-pointers,” Etling continued. “It’s unfortunate enough and you don’t want it to happen. Sometimes, you’ve got to get your stroke back.”
But Etling isn’t receiving any flack on LSU’s campus about errant deep balls. Rather, students are concerned about his propensity to take on contact when scrambling out of the pocket.
“That’s probably the main message everyone on campus had for me today — slide,” Etling said.
Etling acknowledges he should learn to take less shots as the season takes a toll on his body, but he said embracing contact is his “style of play.” As a quarterback, he feels he has to be willing to stand in the pocket and take a hit or sacrifice his body when scrambling for a first down.
“That’s just something I want to do for my team and make sure I give it all I’ve got,” Etling said. “Whether it’s sacrificing my body or not, it’s something I want to do and will continue to do.”
While quarterbacks at Purdue, Danny Etling and Austin Appleby shared a wall as neighbors at …