Herbert and the Top Echelon of Quarterbacks: Week 3

EUGENE, OR - SEPTEMBER 09: Quarterback Justin Herbert
EUGENE, OR - SEPTEMBER 09: Quarterback Justin Herbert /
EUGENE, OR – SEPTEMBER 09: Quarterback Justin Herbert
EUGENE, OR – SEPTEMBER 09: Quarterback Justin Herbert /

Welcome back folks to another Monday of me trying my hand at NFL scouting by rating the top five — to my knowledge — draft eligible quarterbacks in College right now. I know, I know, I’m the best talent evaluator on this side of the Mississippi (the east side because I live in Lexington, Kentucky). Heck, I should take Jon Gruden’s old job and run the QB Camp he was so famed for. Or I should coach the Raiders, because I seriously might be better than him at that. Heck, I could receive a lobotomy and still have enough sense not to trade the best defensive player in the League. Oh well.

Alright, that’s enough Jon Gruden for this week, here’s the official order that I would draft College Football’s top 5 quarterbacks:

All Stats per ESPN

1. Justin Herbert (Oregon) 

Stats: 16/34 for 309 Yards, 3 TD, 2 INT 

Herbert, for the first time so far this season, was a little underwhelming on Saturday. That’s not to say he wasn’t excellent compared to the rest of the nation — he was. He just looked a little out of sync against San Jose State. And he wasn’t alone. For much of the contest, the Ducks seemed to be coasting by. Who can blame them? They have a College Gameday matchup against Top 10 Stanford next week. Herbert threw 2 picks, not something I like to see, but hey, it happens. And as long as it’s not a persistent problem once Pac-12 play rolls around, I wouldn’t be too concerned. Overall, though, Herbert has yet to find a go-to target — whether it be a tight end, wide receiver or running back. Take this week for example: Jacob Breeland and C.J. Verdell led the team in receiving yards. Last week, neither player recorded a catch. I’m definitely nitpicking here, but I want to see Herbert develop a connection with some of the wide-outs. For his sake, and for Oregon Football’s sake at large.

2. Will Grier (West Virginia) 

Stats: None

Well, I was really looking forward to seeing Grier and NC State’s Ryan Finley square off this Saturday in what surely would’ve been an entertaining game. Alas, I, along with the rest of the nation were thieved of such a matchup, leaving me with absolutely nothing to write about William Grier. I guess I’ll just have to wait until next week.

3. Drew Lock (Missouri)

Stats: 26/43 for 375 Yards, 3 TD, 1 INT

As per usual, Lock put up gaudy passing numbers. This time, though, they came against a Big 10 defense. A good Big 10 defense? No sir. And even though it was a moderate defense at best, Lock looked Sunday-worthy. I guess he could’ve completed more passes but hey, he still managed 375 yards and a trio of scores. Lock could flick his wrist and the football would sail across the Ohio. To use a cliche: “he’s got a cannon for an arm.” That would actually be an understatement in this case. With each year of development, Lock continues to build upon his aforementioned and already deadly arm, while also improving his preciseness in the short and medium phases. He’s the third best quarterback right now. Bonus: I’d actually compare his college career, style and arm to Patrick Mahomes. I’m not sayin, I’m just sayin.

4. Ryan Finley (NC State)

Stats: See Grier

Everything else: See Grier.

5. Jarrett Stidham (Auburn)

Stats: 16/28 for 198 Yards, 1 TD, 2 INT

Stidham got dropped a bit this week for his performance versus Louisiana State. This is probably an overreaction, though, because LSU has the best defense of any team I’ve watched this year — Alabama pending. They have a corner named Greedy Williams (name HOF) who was an absolute stud on Saturday, and made life hell for Stidham and the Auburn passing game. The Tiger’s entire secondary really stood out. They even picked Stidham off twice: once on the first pass of the game, and then once in the 4th quarter — a vital play in LSU’s eventual comeback win. And that’s really why Stidham fell. He had the game in his hands. One drive. If he just, at home, drove the ball down the field for a score and sealed the deal, he would probably be a few spots higher. Instead, he got picked off, and then led Auburn to another three straight empty possessions. C’mon Jarrett, you gotta be the guy at the end of these big games. Especially at home.

Watch this five some take the field in their respective games this coming Saturday. But remember to tune into the Oregon-Stanford game at 8PM EST, 5PM PST in Autzen Stadium or on ABC.