I know, I know. "But BJSwanny, feet aren't people." I hear you, but bear with me, because oftentimes the Cyclones' offensive success hinges not on Sam B. Richardson's head and shoulders, but on his knees and toes (knees and toes).
When watching the quarterback play this Saturday at Toledo, watch Richardson's feet and try to draw instant conclusions about the outcome of the play. There's really three options:
1. His feet are hopping and dancing, in which case, even if it's not there, Sammy B is feeling the pressure and is looking to get the ball out of his hands before he's decapitated from behind.
2&3. His feet are completely rock solid, planted in the earth. Which is where we get our third option. Either Sam has complete confidence in his pocket, and is about to step into a dime of a pass, or (and this is the scariest option) he has absolutely no friggin' clue what's about to happen to him.
Which brings us to the next juncture of the footwork play progression. Put me down as one of the biggest Sammy Football sympathizers in Iowa State history, but Sam... Buddy... In four years of play, to my count, the bobbling Jauan Wesley touchdown pass was the first pass with any moderate success that Richardson has thrown falling back on his back foot.
When I win the lottery and retire from anything productive ever, I'm going to sit down and document every single completion of Sam Richardson's career so I have the exact numbers, but until then you'll just have to take my word for it.
Sam no step forward? Sam no throw touchdown.
Same goes for every quarterback from Pop Warner to the NFL, exempting maybe Peyton Manning and (dare I say) Texas A&M-era Johnny Manziel. It just doesn't end well.
So, if you can take anything from the rambling pile of last week's Easy Cheese-esque garbage (still not giving that up until Demond Tucker is introduced on the jumbotron as "Squeeze Cheese" Tucker), it's to focus on the footwork of Sam Richardson. And if he happens to throw another back-foot falling-away touchdown, I'm sure you can all gladly join him with pitchforks and torches and form an angry mob outside my house.