Texas A&M football took a tough loss to Auburn over the weekend and Kellen Mond was a big reason why, but Jimbo Fisher isn’t making a change at quarterback.
It wasn’t pretty at Jordan-Hare Stadium if you’re a fan of Texas A&M football. They squandered a 24-14 fourth quarter lead by allowing Auburn to score touchdowns on their last two drives in the final six minutes of the game.
You could very easily blame the defense for allowing these two touchdowns. Obviously if they stop them on one or both of these drives, the game ends with an Aggie victory. But that’s short-sided thinking. The fact of the matter is Texas A&M had chances to put the game away on offense and special teams and fell short.
Kellen Mond had two very costly turnovers, both of which led to Auburn touchdowns. Remove those mistakes and it’s a different game. Seth Small also missed a chip shot field goal in the fourth quarter which would have pushed the lead to 27-14 with about eight minutes left. Make that and it’s a different game, potentially.
Beyond the mistakes, the Aggies were scoreless for the final 25 minutes despite running the ball very effectively. The problem was Mond. As we pointed out here, Mond went 2-for-13 for 18 yards in the second half if you take away dump off and screen passes to Trayveon Williams, Cullen Gillaspia and the 42-yard designed throw back screen pass to Jace Sternberger.
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His decision making and accuracy have fallen off a cliff in conference play. All the progress Mond made early in the season has seemingly reversed course. However, even with Aggie Twitter seemingly turning on Mond and hoping for Nick Starkel to get a shot, Fisher has doubled down on his guy.
When asked whether he was behind Mond moving forward, Fisher said “1000 percent, and the tape says so.”
I’m not here to say I’m more qualified to judge Mond than a $75 million head coach, nor should anyone, really, but it’s hard to totally understand what Fisher is seeing.
He has a quarterback that doesn’t make decisions fast enough, doesn’t have great pocket awareness to escape at the right time or to the open space, and, especially in the second half of the season, has completely lost his accuracy on deep passes and is inconsistent at best on the short and medium passes.
Fisher clarified his comments by saying “we all get caught up looking at the guy with the ball and not the cause of the play. [There were] about four or five plays in the game [we] wish he would have done well, done better…he played a good football game. Did he play a great football game? No.”
That’s fair. I don’t have access to the All-22 coaches tape. There’s a chance his receivers aren’t getting open, and there are definitely plays the offensive line doesn’t protect well enough, but this past Saturday it didn’t feel like there were any excuses. He was flat out bad.
There’s a chance Fisher is simply backing his starting quarterback heading into the Ole Miss game. He shut down any hint of a quarterback controversy, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see Starkel in the game if Mond continues to struggle.