For Vad Lee, 2013 has already been two distinct and separate seasons all rolled into one.
In the first three games for run-heavy Georgia Tech, the sophomore threw seven touchdowns and just one interception while completing over 56 percent of his passes. The last three games, Lee hasn’t thrown a touchdown pass while tossing four interceptions. He’s completing just 33 percent of his passes during this latest stretch.
Not surprisingly, the Yellow Jackets were 3-0 the first three games of the season, 0-3 in the next trio of games. Granted, the competition level has increased; the wins came against FCS-level Elon, Duke and North Carolina, which are a combined 7-11, while Virginia Tech, Miami and BYU are 15-3 on the season. Still, the calls in some corners for backup Justin Thomas have increased in intensity.
On his radio show Monday night, however, Paul Johnson indicated that he is sticking with Lee as his starter. The head coach pointed out “some drops… a few busted routes” as factors behind Lee’s struggles, while also allowing that “[a] couple of guys were open deep, and he overthrew them.”
Lee’s handling of Tech’s option attack is fine and getting better, Johnson said. His teammates, however, need to do a better job of protecting Lee according to the coach.
“I think he’s actually getting better with his reads, his fundamentals, his technique on some of the option stuff,” Johnson said. “I think in the running game he is getting better. Is he perfect? No, but nobody is. We’ve got to protect him better in the passing game. That’s the bottom line.”
Tech hosts Syracuse Saturday afternoon as Lee and the Yellow Jackets look to get back on their early-season track.