5 Players to Watch for the Nebraska Offense in 2023

The Nebraska offense has gone through many changes over the past few years. Nebraska will have its third different starting quarterback since 2021.

In the past, the offense has been held back by a multitude of different things. Penalties, injuries, turnovers, and questionable play-calling have held back the Huskers in the past few seasons.

With Coach Matt Rhule coming into his first season, there is hope to lessen the mistakes to help make the offense shine in the next few seasons.

With that being said, here are five players to watch on the Nebraska offense in 2023.

Players to Watch on Nebraska’s Offense in 2023

Jeff Sims (Quarterback, Junior)

There is no surprise that the transfer out of Georgia Tech will be one to watch. Jeff Sims brings in a strong arm and a good ability to scramble out of the pocket.

At Georgia Tech, Sims passed for a total of 4,464 yards and 30 touchdowns over three seasons. Sims also accumulated 1,152 yards on the ground with 11 touchdowns.

There are concerns about turnovers and injuries with Sims. In the three seasons in Atlanta, Sims threw 23 interceptions. In 2021 and 2022, Sims only played in less than nine games in both seasons due to injury.

Despite this, Sims can hopefully clean up the turnovers under Coach Rhule and it should help to have an experienced offensive line to protect him.

With that all being said, Sims is primed for a successful 2023 season.

Thomas Fidone (Tight End, Sophomore)

The former No. 1 tight end in the 2021 class is set to start for the first time in Lincoln. Thomas Fidone has been unlucky, tearing the same ACL twice in back-to-back seasons.

In his senior year at Lewis Central High School (Council Bluffs, Iowa), Fidone was a first-team All-America, getting 43 catches for 845 yards and 10 touchdowns. 

Fidone was the highest-rated recruit to sign to Nebraska since 2008 and he hasn’t gotten to showcase that talent. 

With the lack of depth at the tight end position, Fidone will be forced to play more. Despite that, with his potential Fidone is set for a very successful 2023 season.

Gabe Ervin Jr (Running Back, Sophomore)

Gabe Ervin Jr is one of many great running backs that Nebraska has on the roster for 2023. With a very deep position group, Ervin Jr should get his chance to shine in the new offense system.

Ervin Jr was the first freshman running back to start in the season opener in the modern era of Nebraska football in 2021 at Illinois. He would run for 133 yards on 37 carries and two touchdowns before suffering a season-ending injury at No. 3 Oklahoma

In 2022, Ervin Jr played in eight games, rushing for only 94 yards on 20 carries 

Throughout the off-season, Ervin Jr has been working and getting stronger. With all the work he has done through the off-season, he has earned playing time and is worth a watch.

Ben Scott (Center, Junior)

Ben Scott, a center transfer from Arizona State, makes an immediate impact on Nebraska’s offensive line. He brings a veteran presence that the offensive line has needed in the past few years.

In three seasons in Tempe, Scott started 28 games. He started four games at right tackle in 2020 and all 13 games in 2021. Last season, Scott was moved to center and he started 11 games.

Scott has been watchlisted for the Rimington Award and is primed for a strong final year in his college career in Lincoln.

Isaiah Garcia-Castaneda (Wide Receiver, Junior)

Isaiah Garcia-Castaneda (IGC) transferred to Nebraska last season from New Mexico State. He would play in four games before utilizing his redshirt season. IGC caught five passes for 120 yards and a touchdown.

Most would think, why is IGC a player to watch? Well, IGC is trending to be a starter in 2023 because of the loss of Zavier Betts, who left the team.

With that being said, IGC should get more of an opportunity to make some noise and is somebody to watch for a breakout season.

Main Image: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

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