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Lawrence Cager Needs To Be A Bigger Part Of This Offense

Through the first three games, the Hurricanes offense needs to focus on getting the ball to Lawrence Cager more.

NCAA Football: Miami at Toledo Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into this season, receiver Lawrence Cager was expected to be a crucial part of the Miami offense, lining up opposite side of Ahmmon Richards. In fact, in many of my pre-season, I had Cager as the darkhorse for the Canes offense in 2018.

Through the first three games, we’ve seen Cager, but honestly, we need more of 18.

The redshirt junior has proven what he can do when he gets the ball, and against Toledo he proved just that. Cager was targeted three times, and had three receptions. One went for a touchdown on a jump-ball. The other two came on third-down conversions int he second half when Toledo was mounting a comeback, one for 30-yards and the other for 32-yards.

Interestingly enough, third-down is when Cager has been most productive for Mark Richt’s offense. In 2017, four of Cager’s 16 catches on the year came on third-down, including another catch on fourth-down. This year, already three of Cager’s seven catches have also come on third-down.

So its absolutely clear that when this 6’5 monster gets the ball, he’s going places, and so is the Miami offense.

Last season, though still working his way up the depth chart, Cager still made an impact. Off 16 receptions, the Maryland native scored three touchdowns, and averaged 14.8 yards a catch, which was third on the team for receivers with more than 15 catches on the year.

One asset that Cager uses to his advantage is obviously his height. Standing 6’5, he’ll most likely be the tallest or one of the tallest players on the field.

Also, FIU’s two starting cornerbacks stand at 6’0 and 5’11, just saying coach Richt.

In the first three games, Cager has just been targeted 11 times, and has seven catches. With those seven receptions, Cager has two touchdowns already, and is averaging over 18 yards a catch.

Its obvious that Jeff Thomas has taken over Richards’ spot as the go-to-guy for Malik Rosier while he’s still injured, but Cager needs to be the next man up. While Thomas is the deep-threat guy, Cager is Rosier’s man on third-down plays.

Even though he isn’t going to burn you with his speed like Thomas, Cager will also get you extra yards after the catch, even if he doesn’t look the most natural.