Etling met criticism all week after the Alabama loss where his misfires on deep balls played a part in costing LSU a chance to snap its losing streak to the Tide (Orgeron said on his coach’s show that the Tigers missed three touchdowns on deep balls).
Nobody would have blamed him for acknowledging his injury and playing it safe against the Hogs, but that’s not Etling. This is the guy who played the entire 2016 season with numbness in his leg caused by a back injury that would require surgery.
As for that surgery, he would put it off until after spring practice because he said he needed the reps in Matt Canada’s new offense.
That is why Etling has the trust of his coaches and the respect of his teammates. It is also why Orgeron insists that Etling gives his team the best chance to win its remaining two games and a bowl game.
“We believe in Danny and the positive things he brings to this football team,” Orgeron said Monday. “He’s one of the toughest guys. He’s a silent leader. He wants to win.”
And it’s because of those traits that Etling will be under center three more times for the Tigers—misfires, injuries and all.
(You can follow Matt Moscona on Twitter @MattMoscona)
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