Below are my Top 5 Quarterback Rankings after the Bowl Season:
Geno Smith, the West Virginia
Geno Smith, has always intrigued me immensely. He is a prototypical quarterback standing 6’3 and weighing in at around 210 pounds, and has the arm strength to make all of the NFL-level throws.
Despite playing in arguably the weakest conference in all of division I football for three of his four years, I think Geno Smith has done a nice job at setting himself apart from the pack.
After decimating defenses in the Big East and laying the lumber on Clemson, Smith and WVU made a move that geographically, and possibly even athletically, they have no reason to be in. They hopped the proverbial ship and departed for the Big XII and Smith took it all in stride, passing for an astonishing 4205 yards and 42 TDs.
Oh, I forgot to mention the measly 6 interceptions he threw all season. He posted career highs in completions, completion percentage and touchdowns, while his six interceptions was a career low.
He has statistically improved over every season he has been at WVU, and in nearly every category. In games he lost (6), he threw for only 5 interceptions. Keep in mind, the WVU offensive line is no ‘Bama, and the defense, or lack thereof, was abominable. You can chalk the ‘Cuse loss to poor defense.
Smith, with his superior accuracy, and the ability to make all the throws, run when necessary and his sound decision making, sits alone at the top of my leader board for number one QB prospect
Jones slots second in my top five, and coming from a UT fan, that has to account for something. Let’s cut to the chase… Landry Jones lacks the elite arm strength you’d like to see out of your franchise quarterback. With that being said, I still think he makes a great pick for some needy NFL teams out there.
There’s no doubt about it… when Jones has playmakers around him, he excels at an intense rate. He has shown that he can do a good job with ball placement as to where only the receiver can catch the ball. During the 2012 season, Jones posted a career high in completion percentage (66.1%) and career low in interceptions (11). On November 17, against Geno Smith and WVU, Jones threw for 554 yards and 6 TDs.
With minor slip ups against nationally ranked opponent Kansas State, eventual national runner up Notre Dame, and Heisman trophy winner Johnny Football, I think Jones has done enough to show us that he is ready to lead in the NFL if given the opportunity.
Miami (OH) always seems to churn out a bruiser with a big arm and a knack for finding the end zone. Whelp, ladies and gentleman, Zac Dysert sure fits the mold. Standing 6’4 and weighing 230 pounds, Dysert is a big body with a decent arm. He has a good delivery and is a pure playmaker. He chucked the pigskin for 25 TDs and 12 INTs, and even though he played for a Miami (OH) team that displayed dismal attempts at football at times, he has shown flashes of brilliance.
You will hear people speak of his Roethlisberger-esque physique, although he is not as bulky as Big Ben, making it somewhat easier to move around the pocket, inside and out. While he does not share in Roethlisberger’s elite arm strength, he does share in his innate ability to improvise, almost as if he’s programmed to make plays and move the first down marker.
This selection at number three may come as a surprise to some people, and quite frankly, they may be right. However, in a draft as thin as this at the quarterback position, I do not think that it is out of the realm of possibility for Dysert to be a backup to a good QB in the league and learn the offense and become a successful QB in this league.
Coming in at number four on my top five is Tyler Wilson, the signal caller for the Arkansas RazorBacks. This is one quarterback who will have no problem making any throw on the field at the next level. He throws a nice tight spiral, and the ball has a zip that could make a receivers hand black and blue.
Like Dysert, Wilson is a tall, physical player that has the ability to wing the ball all over the field to a flurry of different receivers. He threw for 21 TDs and a completion percentage of 62.1%. ALSO, like Dysert, Wilson played for a 4-8 team. However, in two toe-to-toe losses to South Carolina and LSU (both teams which play very good defensive football) he threw for a combined total of 636 yards and 4 TDs
Again, this could be another stretch, but I have this gut feeling that Wilson will make an NFL team very happy as a backup quarterback. His 1.6.:1 TD/INT ratio leaves a lot to be desired, but with the right mentoring, he may be able to shock some people.
Lastly we have one Matthew Barkley… and where to begin. Voters had all but sealed their envelopes and had already begun placing the Heisman trophy into Barkley’s hands, when the strangest thing happened: Barkley catapulted from frontrunner to non-existence in the Heisman race.
Look, I know what you’re going to say next: “Ian, his stats were still great. He still can make throws. He still grasps offenses and knows the game of football…” but listen: Nearly every, EVERY one of his stats dropped from last season. 36 TDS is down from 39 in 2012. 63.6% completions are down from 69%. 3273 yards passing is down from 3528 in ’11. By the way, he did this all while painting the backdrop with a career high 15 interceptions. Throw in a GREAT offensive line and explain to me how Barkley goes from #1 to not having a number?
In a weak QB draft, Barkley was all but a lock to be the first QB off the board, but he has shown that poor decision making puts his team in a bad spot, and he would have to grow and mature in a system immensely before taking the reigns as a meaningful force in this league.
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