So it’s the other team that plays at the Linc who may be doing the quarterback shuffle this weekend. While Mike Vick remains in one piece, the same can’t be said about Temple’s Connor Reilly.
As if the Owls (0-2) weren’t desperate enough for a win when they take on Fordham Saturday, Matt Rhule’s team may have to take on the Rams (2-0) without Reilly. After being helped off the field with a knee injury in the fourth quarter of Temple’s 22-13 loss to Houston, Reilly somehow made it back to the field unsuccessfully trying to rally his troops.
Reilly hasn’t practiced since and he’s questionable for Saturday, meaning it’s likely Clinton “Juice” Granger will be pressed into duty.
“If the game was today, he wouldn’t have played,” said Rhule at his weekly press conference Tuesday. “When I made the decision [in August] we went with Connor because we thought we had something there. But we also thought Juice had come a long way. He’s started before, so I have complete confidence in Clinton if he goes.
Rhule’s pass-first philosophy won’t change despite Granger’s mobility.
“Juice is probably more of a runner than Connor,” Rhule said. “Connor’s a good athlete. Juice is an outstanding athlete. But our offense won’t change with him in there. We’re still gonna throw the football.”
Turning Juice loose, though, hasn’t meant much success in the past. In seven games last year (two starts), he threw for just 370 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing for 206 more.
Whomever starts for the Owls, the key will be focusing on the short term. That starts with beating the team in front of them, Fordham.
“We control how we play,” said Rhule, who tried to recruit Rams QB Michael Nebrich for the Owls. “We have to get in the business of winning, rather than beating ourselves. It doesn’t matter who we play.”