We knew there was potential for Brian Johnson to struggle as he grew into his role as offensive coordinator. Unfortunately, I don't think many fans felt it would look this bad only four games into the season. For whatever reason, this year's offense looks even worse than last year's and, having watched thirteen games of last year's offense, that's pretty hard to believe.
Yet here we are ... an offense struggling to find an identity and traction with an inexperienced offensive coordinator. But does Johnson deserve much of the blame? After all, we all knew the possibility was there for the season to go south if Jordan Wynn was injured and, a game and a half into the season, he was done for good. John White IV has spent most the season injured, as well, and missed a game because of it. The offensive line is a mess right now, which, coupled with White's injury, makes it that much more difficult establishing the run. Those are all things out of Johnson's control.
Really, could any coordinator do a better job than this ... with how flawed the offense seems to be beyond just the play calling? Sure, we've gone over whether the play calling is the reason for the anemic offense, but it's just as possible that those circumstances are dragging the offense down, not the coaching. If that's the case, if that's what we're looking at here, no matter how good of a play caller Johnson could be, it doesn't mean a lick with so many mounting problems on the offensive side of the ball.
Then again, it could be a mix of both. While this offense might not be good, its lack of effectiveness is far more troubling than its ability to score points. Even last year, when the offense did just enough, it was at least stable enough to provide Utah the needed wins for a satisfactory season. That hasn't happened yet this year and who knows, it might not happen. So, who's to blame then - Johnson, the talent ... or both?