There are bad passes, ill-advised passes and awful passes. Then there’s what Purdue quarterback Aidan O’Connell threw on Saturday against Syracuse. One does not need to be a QB guru to know not to attempt a pass while being tackled by a defender. Especially on first down. And especially deep in your own end of the field.
If it’s fourth down and a do-or-die situation? OK, maybe. But not on first down. If O’Connell’s parents hired me when he was a child, maybe this play could’ve been averted. But they didn’t, and now Purdue must live with the results.
Of course, there are two sides to every coin. If O’Connell’s parents had hired me to teach Aidan not to throw this pass, Syracuse defensive tackle Caleb Okechukwu wouldn’t have scored this interception return for a touchdown. And the last thing we would want to do is rob a beast of a man of Okechukwu of the joy that comes with a big-boy pick six.
It’s a real darned if you do, darned if you don’t situation. Life is complicated, folks; there are no easy answers. But there are Big Boy Touchdowns. (Plus, a few minutes later, O’Connell unleashed a dime to Charlie Jones for a 55-yard touchdown, so he recovered just fine.)