Heading into the fourth week of the season, the 2013 Heisman Watch is heating up! Week three put Heisman-hopefuls Johnny Manziel and A.J. McCarron on the same field, and the quarterbacks didn’t disappoint. Who’s ahead on the list, you might ask? Here’s my updated top 5!
5. AJ McCarron
Making is debut in the Heisman Watch, AJ McCarron comes in at No. 5. In just two games, McCarron has rolled with the Crimson Tide’s high-powered offense, completing 30-of-52 attempts for 422 yards and five touchdowns with just one interception. Unlike most SEC teams, the Tide don’t run a fast-paced, flashy, kill-you-with-speed spread offense. Alabama wins on efficiency, and if you watch their offense at its best, they’re virtually unstoppable.
They pound the ball inside, and when McCarron throws, he stays in the pocket like an old-school gunslinger. His style of play is so different from the other quarterbacks on the list, and that’s exactly what makes him so appealing. McCarron’s ability to lead this classy offense lands him at five, but expect the senior to make some moves up the list as the season continues.
4. Teddy Bridgewater
The junior Cardinal fell from the top spot after his less-than-Bridgewater performance on the road against Kentucky, where he completed 16-of-28 passes for 250 yards and one touchdown. Yes, you read that correctly, just one touchdown! It seems as if Teddy Bridgewater is in fact human! It’s not that his performance was bad, it just wasn’t as good as it was in the first two games.
The scary thought is, it took Bridgwater a while to get going against Kentucky, who was supposed to be one of Louisville’s few difficult opponents this season. If he wants to stay in the watch, Bridgewater’s going to need to dominate his cupcake schedule, starting tomorrow versus Florida International.
3. Tajh Boyd
Clemson had the third week of the season off, but Boyd took to the field last night to start the week 4 games against NC State, and he didn’t disappoint. Boyd threw for 244 yards and three touchdowns on 24-37 passing, and has yet to throw an interception in the 2013 season. Now, his passing numbers for the season look like this: 683 yards and six touchdowns. Rushing the ball, Boyd’s been efficient as well, running for 90 yards and three touchdowns on 32 carries.
Long story short, Boyd’s putting up Heisman numbers against better-than-average opponents, something most of the list can’t say.
2. Johnny Manziel
Oh, Johnny Football, what are we going to do with you. I’m begrudgingly putting Manziel at No. 2 this week, and I say begrudgingly because I honestly don’t think Mr. Football has any chance to repeat his 2012 award. However, number’s don’t lie, so here goes nothing.
There’s no way around it, Manziel balled out against Alabama, completing 28-of-39 passes for 464 yards and five touchdowns. Manziel did throw two poor interceptions, but that’s going to happen to a young, gutsy quarterback trying to prove himself against the best team in the nation. Manziel also ran the ball 14 times for 98 yards, showing how dynamic and explosive he truly can be. Even though the Aggies came up short against the Crimson Tide, Manziel did show that he can play under the pressure, and that his skill wasn’t a one year flash-in-the-pan. The only question is how long will it last before his ego and pride get in the way.
1. Marcus Mariota
This week’s top dog on the 2013 Heisman Watch list is none other than Eugene’s newest star, sophomore quarterback Marcus Mariota.
This guy can do it all, literally. Last week against Tennessee was the first time the quarterback didn’t run for 100 yards, only earning 27 yards on 6 carries. Instead of running all over the Vols and occasionally dropping a pass or two in the end-zone like previous weeks, Mariota showed off his arm, throwing for 456 yards and four touchdowns on 22-of-33 passing.
If you haven’t been able to catch an Oregon game yet this season, you’re missing out. Just to recap why he’s no. 1, enjoy these stats: 49-82, 889 yards, seven touchdowns, 0 interceptions, 15 carries, 262 yards, four more touchdowns.
Don’t agree with my no. 1? Use the poll and vote below! Just remember, number’s don’t lie, folks.