The Ohio State football team will be ushering in a new starting quarterback this season. I mean, with Justin Fields becoming the savior of the Chicago Bears and all (so we hope).
And while it is supposed to be a three quarterback race between freshmen C.J. Stroud, Jack Miller, and Kyle McCord, it seems Pro Football Focus already has its mind made up on who will get the starting nod, and it’s Fields’ de facto backup from last season, Stroud.
We tend to agree at this point, but Ryan Day and staff have gone out of their way to proclaim and reiterate that it is an open competition and that all three are in the mix for earning the starting spot.
No matter. Anthony Treash of PFF went ahead and took Stroud as the starter and ranked him amongst the rest of the 130 FBS starters. And … you may be more surprised than a coherent Jim Harbaugh answer at a press conference as to where he landed. We wonder if we want to put too much stock in a writing crew that said Ryan Day was NOT one of the best 20 coaches in college football, but we digress.
NEXT … Where PFF ranked C.J. Stroud among all starting FBS quarterbacks
C.J. Stroud – No. 20 overall in all of FBS
Team Brutus quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) calls out a play during the Ohio State Buckeyes football spring game at Ohio Stadium in Columbus on Saturday, April 17, 2021. Credit: USA TODAY Sports
What Treash Says
“Stroud has a broad range of outcomes, considering he has yet to take a dropback at the college level. Yet, he will be going to a good situation and looks to have the traits to enjoy immense success as the Buckeyes’ starting quarterback.
“The 2020 top-50 recruit and No. 2-ranked pro-style quarterback in the class, according to 247Sports, will follow in the footsteps of Justin Fields, who was college football’s most valuable player in the 2019 and 2020 seasons. It’s a tall task, but again, the tools are there. He has proven to have a big arm and can be a threat on the ground, as he showed on his lone carry in 2020 that resulted in a 48-yard touchdown.”
NEXT … What we say
C.J. Stroud – No. 20 overall QB in all of FBS
COLUMBUS, OH – APRIL 17: Quarterback C.J. Stroud #7 of the Ohio State Buckeyes passes during the Spring Game at Ohio Stadium on April 17, 2021 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
What We Say
We’re at least going to give Treash credit for being forward-thinking here. All you have to do is look as far back as both Justin Fields and Dwayne Haskins to show that a first-year starter under center at Ohio State can bust on the scene. In fact, taking those two examples into account, No. 20 might not be giving Stroud enough credit.
So yeah, we can see it. Stroud will have a very good offensive line, arguably the most talented and deep wide receiving corps in the country, and should be able to get yards in bunches in a system that seems to allow talented and athletic kids to develop and shine.
The only way this thing goes off the rails is if one of the other two quarterbacks competing for the starting job actually win it. Then, we say go ahead and plug either Miller or McCord in this spot.
To get a look at the complete rankings of all the starting quarterbacks in college football for the 2021 season, head on over to PFF’s website.
Ohio State football 2021 projected depth chart, post-spring offense
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