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Adams eager to get back on field

EUGENE — Vernon Adams was working on the sideline during Oregon’s victory over Georgia State on Saturday.

Adams spent his time sitting out with a broken finger paying close attention as Jeff Lockie led the Ducks to a 61-28 victory at Autzen Stadium. Lockie went 23-for-31 for 228 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start.

“I saw a lot of great things, especially for me coming in late to camp,” Adams said. “I saw a quarterback out there who really knew what he was doing, going through his reads, and it was good for me. It sucked, obviously, being on the sideline and not playing, but it was good for me to learn from Jeff, to see him go through his progressions and reads and lead the team. Whenever he came to the sideline I told him what I saw and he told me what he was thinking so I got a lot of mental reps out there.”

Adams said he took those lessons inside the Moshofsky Center for practice Monday as the Ducks started preparing to host Utah on Saturday night.

“I watched him do what he did out there going through his progressions and learned that’s what I need to do and be better with my footwork while I am in the pocket,” Adams said. “I was a little sloppy the first couple games, but I learned a lot from him. It was good to sit out and watch.”

Coach Mark Helfrich said Adams and the rest of the quarterbacks should learn whenever they are watching football.

“I think he can learn from every snap as a quarterback,” he said. “You can play every single play of every single game at home if you’re watching the NFL and you’re trying to identify pressure or coverage or schematic of what the other side is trying to do. You can do that every single rep in practice. If you’re watching guys do one-on-one, every quarterback should literally play every rep in their mind because you can’t get enough reps of all the things that can happen.

“You’ve got the perfect scenario and somebody slips and you have to go to the next guy, whatever it is those things, you just cannot get enough reps as a quarterback. Vernon, a young guy in the system, has to take advantage of that even better than somebody who has.”

Lockie spent his first three years at Oregon learning behind Marcus Mariota.

“I think Jeff had a big advantage because he got to watch Marcus and see how things are done when they are done the right way for the most part,” Oregon offensive coordinator Scott Frost said. “I think Vernon can gain some of the same things. There are some things I think Jeff does a little cleaner and crisper because he’s been around here and understands it a little bit better. That’s a good experience for VA.”

Adams does not plan to be on the sidelines when the 13th-ranked Ducks (2-1) take on No. 18 Utah (3-0). He reported that his broken right index finger was “feeling good” after practice.

“I hope so,” Adams responded when asked if he expects to play Saturday, adding “If it’s up to me, yeah”.

Frost said Oregon has not decided who will start against the Utes and indicated the injury itself would not keep Adams out unless it affected his skills.

“He’s definitely improving,” Frost said. “I think there’s no risk any more of furthering the injury. So we just have to watch him throw this week and make sure he is up to speed.”

Adams said he feels the pain most when throwing the ball.

“Because my index finger is the last finger that touches the ball and gets the spin,” he explained.

Adams said his finger was at about “80 percent” and indicated that he was ready to play through the pain.

“My finger hurts, but I want to be out there as fast as I can,” Adams said.

Oregon quarterback Jeff Lockie (17) looks to throw against Georgia State Saturday. He made his first career start. AP PHOTO
Adams