As the Tigers are set to face off against the UCLA Bruins in tomorrow’s season opener, LSU fans will get their first glimpse at the new offensive scheme under coordinator Jake Peetz. With a more spread offense, the Tigers playmakers will have the chance to showcase their talent on a consistent basis.
For LSU freshman All-American Kayshon Boutte, he has his eyes set on an expanded role in this new scheme. The sophomore wide receiver will be lined up all over the field, keeping defenses on their toes every Saturday.
"I find myself in many different places. Coach Peetz came in and moved me around,” Boutte said during spring. “Last year I played mainly X, just X. This year I'm different, X, Z, backfield, I do it different. I like that he came in and changed the style."
The scheme Peetz has brought in will expand the play of Boutte, but also many other players, namely John Emery and starting quarterback Max Johnson.
For Emery, the junior running back sees himself in a Christian McCaffrey type mold, lining up in multiple spots and making plays with his sheer athleticism. In Peetz’ tenure with the Carolina Panthers, he had the opportunity of coaching up McCaffrey, where he looks to translate that success to both veteran backs Emery and Tyrion Davis-Price.
"Coach Peetz actually showed me clips of Christian as soon as he came in," Emery said. "And me seeing that, I just knew it was going to be a perfect fit.”
Emery has been around this team long enough to see what a championship caliber offensive scheme looks like, and the junior back surely sees himself contributing to well-oiled machine in LSU this season.
"I've really sat back and observed," Emery said. "I'm grateful that I came in with a championship team, and me being a part of that team. I took in a lot. I know what a championship team looks like, and it was amazing. I've learned a lot, and I'm more focused than my last two years. I've grown, and I feel like me and this team are about to be very successful. I love the offense that we have right now with Coach Peetz."
Freshmen such as wide receiver Brian Thomas Jr. and running back Corey Kiner have the opportunity to be special in Peetz’ game plan. The two freakish athletes make defenders miss left and right, and with Peetz giving the ball to his play makers in open field, they’re due to see instant success in this new offense.
Thomas Jr. has had a standout camp, as have all four freshmen receivers. Johnson has praised the growth they all have made in such a short period of time, hoping to see them excel in this offense.
“I guess it just brings a lot of depth for our passing game,” Johnson said. “I think they’ve done a great job of just getting open. They can go up and get the ball. They’re super aggressive, they’re mean, they know how to get open. They’re a bunch of great players that all make plays.”
This new scheme has the chance to be special with players like Boutte, Emery, Davis-Price and the four freshmen receivers in the mix. Johnson’s ability to surprise defenses in the RPO opens up Peetz’ playbook to different dimensions as well, which the Tigers haven’t had in quite some time.
As the Tigers continue game planning for tomorrow’s season opener, this offensive unit is in good hands with multiple weapons to their arsenal. Peetz’ NFL experience and incredible work ethic will put the Tigers in position to win week in and week out.