Chris Croson, as a wide receiver, threw a 50-yard touchdown pass on a razzle-dazzle play on Mayflower’s first play from scrimmage in the Eagles’ victory over Little Rock Episcopal in the final regular-season game of last year.
Little did he know that would be a precursor to the 2011 season.
After Jordan Burns, last year’s starter most of the season, elected to concentrate on baseball, Croson, a senior, is now the quarterback.
"It’s been a adjustment, but I know more now what to do," he said.
"He was nervous in our first scrimmage (against Paris), but he got better and better as the scrimmage went on," coach Jed Davis said. "I’ve gained confidence in him."
He says his experience at receiver last season has helped.
"I know their routes and where the receivers are gonna be and when they are gonna be there," he said. "I know how what touch to put on the ball and what it takes to get it there."
"What Chris does very well is read defenses," Davis said. "One practice, I remember one practice, our defense was supposed to be in a Cover 2, but it wasn’t a true Cover 2. He came back to the huddle after the play and looked up and told me, ‘They weren’t in a Cover 2.’ I said, ‘You’re right.’
"He can be a coach on the field and I can trust his judgment. He’s the first quarterback in four years I’ve been able to do that with a quarterback."
The Eagles will operate more out of running formations this season in order to best utilize Croson’s talents and a backfield full of capable backs.
"If you don’t have a quarterback who can run the Spread, you’re in trouble," Davis said. "We’re going to adjust our offense to what our players can do. We’ve got good backs and we’re going to use them in the running game."
"I have great confidence in our backs," Croson said. "All of them are good at reading defenses and cutting into the open. We have a lot more size and speed. I trust all of them and I trust our line.
"And our defense is quick and more experienced. We are a team and I think we will be a good team."