Replacing a star quarterback who may end up being the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft is never an easy proposition. When that potential replacement also doubles as your older brother? Yeah, that task comes with just a little bit of additional pressure.
Yet that’s where Tyler Gabbert finds himself at this point, a week into Missouri’s first set of 2011 spring practices.
He’s far from a lock to replace Blaine Gabbert as Mizzou’s starter — the redshirt freshman will be competing with presumptive front-runner James Franklin, as well as Ashton Glaser — but, thus far, he’s impressing those around him.
“He might not win the position,” wide receiver T.J. Moe said according to the Columbia Tribune, “but he’s put himself in the best position to be the best player he can right now.”
Offensive coordinator David Yost intimated that, if Gabbert v2.0 doesn’t win the starting job, it won’t be because lack of off-field preparation.
“He’s got the least experience in the system, but he’s got a great knowledge of the system,” Yost said. “He’s worked his tail off this offseason studying. He knows what’s going on. He knows everything. Now it’s just a matter of playing the position and knowing, ‘OK, this is what this play looks like when I run it. This is what it looks like when I draw it on the board. This is what is looks like on video.'”
It would appear that Franklin may have the inside track on the job at this point in time but, based on Gabbert’s willingness to work his craft, Franklin’s in for a battle throughout the remainder of the spring and into summer camp.