New Faces in Virginia Tech's Quarterback Room: Grant Wells

Part one of a two-part film evaluation of the Hokies' pair of recent quarterback transfers. 10-play film breakdown of what the Marshall transfer brings to Virginia Tech.

[Marshall Athletics]

The first week of 2022 brought the first of a new wave of faces in Virginia Tech's locker room. In a coordinated announcement, Marshall starting quarterback Grant Wells and South Carolina quarterback Jason Brown transferred to Virginia Tech. With reported offensive coordinator Tyler Bowen's anticipated transition to a multiple look power spread that will rely less on quarterback runs, this series will take a closer look at how each quarterback fits into the new offensive scheme.

Grant Wells was a two-year starter at Marshall and has three years of eligibility remaining. The 6-2, 203 pound, Charleston, WV product threw for 5,626 yards over the course of two seasons with 3,535 of those yards coming last year. The biggest red flag in Wells' stat line is 22 interceptions to go along with the 34 touchdowns. Is Wells a gunslinger who is a little too reckless with the football? Or was he someone who got some bad bounces during the course of his tenure?

Let's take a look at the film.

Run Game Mechanics

Under head coach Charles Huff, Marshall adopted a run-first spread scheme with a heavy dose of tailback Rasheen Ali (19.23 attempts per game, 16th nationally). While Wells was responsible for creating mesh points with Ali and the other running backs, the Thundering Herd rarely tasked him to option an edge defender and factor into the run game. While backside edge defenders are usually responsible to defend quarterback keepers and bootlegs, often they did not account for Wells as a run threat. Watch this zone stretch against Louisiana.

The backside edge defender (No. 17) doesn't pay much attention to the possibility of Wells breaking contain.

Most of Wells' run game mechanics focused on setting up play-action and bootlegs when pulling the football from the mesh point. While Wells's wheels didn't usually concern opposing defenses, he has the ability to throw on the move off the play-fake.

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