Is everyone overreacting to Auburn’s offensive ineptitude against Clemson?

Was it Auburn’s offense or Clemson’s defense that was the biggest issue? I’d argue it was a little bit of both.

New OC Chip Lindsey admitted Sunday night that he was the one calling the Tigers’ plays Saturday, not Gus Malzahn. It was the worst offensive effort in the Malzahn era at Auburn, as the Tigers surrendered a whopping 11 sacks.

Transfer QB Jarrett Stidham is a very talented signal caller, but Peyton Manning or Cam Newton couldn’t do much with that Tigers’ OL.

In a story published after Week 2, ESPN’s Todd McShay wonders if the Stidham-Malzahn marriage will even work.

I thought their pass protection scheme was poor on Saturday and they left Jarrett Stidham out to dry. Clemson’s defensive line is terrific, but 11 sacks in a game should never happen. There are too many long-developing route concepts in this offense, which doesn’t make sense. It is clear Stidham doesn’t trust the protection — and nor should he. I’m worried that the Gus Malzahn-Stidham marriage isn’t going to work.

Much has been made about Stidham’s transfer from Baylor. He put up terrific numbers with the Bears during his freshman season, but that wow factor hasn’t been there through two weeks at Auburn.

Some of that’s on the play calling. Some of that’s on Stidham. Most of that, at least last week, is on the OL.

Malzahn’s offenses have had tremendous success in the past with mostly running QBs. Cam Newton and Nick Marshall are certainly two who come to mind, and it begs the question even with Stidham being so talented, ‘Why would Malzahn even pursue non-running QBs?’

Great coaches have proven they can win with great QBs, pro-style or dual-threat. They mold the offenses and play calling around the talent and strengths of the offense.

Yes, Stidham is a good athlete, but he’s no Nick Marshall. And for Malzahn’s and Auburn’s offense to have success, it may just need a running QB.