Not long ago I wrote an article comparing Jameis Winston to Johnny Manziel. Throughout the entire article I pointed out how Johnny Manziel continues to make poor decisions off the field while Jameis Winston seems to be quite upstanding with amazing character. As the college football season progresses it looks as if Jameis Winston is here to stay. Some felt as if the first few games were just a fluke. After watching much of the first half of the Boston College game I can say that is not the case. Winston came out slow with a few incompletions. Most young quarterbacks would have hung their head; Jameis did not. He finished the first half strong with 216 yards and three touchdowns. Even though he started the game with a few incompletions he still ended up 9 of 13 for the half. This tells me that the kid can bounce back from a tough situation.
Jameis Winston is Mature
At one point in the first half of the Florida State at Boston College game the Seminoles were down 17-3. There are a number of experienced quarterbacks that would have tried to do too much and get their team back in the game with one play. Famous Jameis methodically worked down the field a few times. He gained his confidence with some completions. By the time the half was over the Seminoles had scored 21 straight points. This is the sign of a very mature young quarterback. Having watched thousands of hours of college football in the last decade I can tell you that quarterbacks like this do not come around often.
There are a number of young quarterbacks that burst onto the scene of college football and have a few impressive games early in their career. After defensive coordinators get some game film of these players it is harder to throw for the big yards. Jameis Winston is still very early in his career so it will be fun to watch his progression. It is often true that young quarterbacks go in one direction or the other. They continue to grow and mature both on the field and in the classroom. These are the quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Andrew Luck that go on to impressive professional careers. There are other quarterbacks that let the success get to their head and they stop doing the hard work needed to succeed. There are hundreds of quarterbacks that have a few great games but never amount to anything.
The fact that Jameis Winston is such a mature young man makes me believe he will be the quarterback that continues to study the game while also studying in the classroom. I do not think that is the case with Johnny Manziel. I think Johnny Football has other things on his mind. He enjoys partying and going out way too much. While Manziel is at the party Winston is in the film room watching game tape of the teams coming up. I think we can all agree that Peyton Manning became the amazing quarterback he is today because of hard work. Peyton does not have the best throwing motion nor is he the most skilled. What he has is the best work ethic in the game of football today.
The ACC Helps Winston
Something that diehard college football fans recognize is the conference in which an athlete plays will greatly determine their stats. The ACC is not considered one of the strongest conferences in college football so Jameis Winston will have several layup games. Boston College was one of those games. When the game was over Winston had 329 passing yards and four touchdowns. No one will make the argument that Boston College is even a decent team. Other terrible teams in the ACC include Wake Forest and UNC. The University of North Carolina Tar Heels gave up 55 points to a very bad ECU team. This means that Florida State will likely be able to drop about 50 on them. With the upcoming schedule being rather weak look for Jameis Winston to have a huge year when it comes to stats.
I am a numbers guy but I do warn my friends about looking at stats too closely. Recognize that stats do not mean everything. Johnny Manziel is going to have huge stats this year because the Texas A&M defense is terrible. Some quarterbacks might not have the best stats but they are great leaders and great players. As it looks right now, Jameis Winston is going to have amazing stats and he looks to be a strong leader. As mentioned earlier, this is not common when it comes to freshmen in college.
The biggest game Jameis Winston will have in 2013 will likely be the Clemson game. Unless something unusual happens in the next two weeks it looks as if Clemson will play Florida State as one of the top three teams in the country. If Florida State continues to win and a few other teams take a loss this could be an ACC matchup of two top five teams. This has not happened in a very long time. Tajh Boyd, the quarterback of Clemson, recently set the ACC record for most touchdown passes in a career. The press will eat this alive as it will be young against old. Tajh Boyd is a senior and he has taken his bumps and bruises along the way. Jameis Winston is still a freshman and he has a lot to learn over the course of the next several years. That does not mean he will not perform well against the Clemson Tigers this year.
This game will be played at Clemson on October 19th, 2013. Interestingly, the FSU Seminoles will go into the game off a bye week. This gives them seven extra days to prepare. One would think Florida State would have the advantage with this being the case. It should be one of the more enjoyable ACC games to watch in 2013. If Jameis Winston and Tajh Boyd are both healthy it will probably be a very high scoring game.
Tajh Boyd vs Jameis Winston
Any other year and I would say that Jameis Winston is a lock for ACC Player of the Year with this type of play. This year, he might not even get a handful of votes. Tajh Boyd has already thrown for over 1000 yards and 9 touchdowns in the very early part of the season. Tajh Boyd is also a senior so he has been around the block a time or two. This is going to garner him even more votes from the media. It will also be hard for Famous Jameis to have any chance at the Heisman because there are so many great quarterbacks throughout the country. In the southeast alone there are big names like Johnny Manziel, Tajh Boyd, AJ McCarron, Aaron Murray and Stephan Morris. All of these quarterbacks have had outstanding years in the early part of the season. This does not include names outside the southeast like Teddy Bridgewater and Marcus Mariota. As we continue to progress through the 2013 it might end up being the year of the quarterback.
Not too long ago I wrote the article, “Is 2013 the Year of the Athletic Quarterback?” Well, it looks as if that prediction is coming true. It is truly enjoyable to watch the great quarterback play in college football this year. One of the things many NFL fans say about college football is the quarterback play is substandard. That is not an argument this year. There are eight to ten college quarterbacks that will have a great future in the NFL. These young men are throwing the pigskin around every Saturday afternoon or night. If you have yet to watch college football this year I would suggest checking out some of the games on CBS, ABC, ESPN or Fox Sports. You will be shocked at the stellar play from the quarterback position.
I will be the first to admit that I am a college football homer. I watch very little NFL football as I love the fervor and passion of college football fans in small towns. I also love to see student athletes succeed. One of my joys is to see young men and women graduate from college and move on to bigger and better things. This is sometimes related to athletics, but many times it is not. I feel as if most NFL players do not have a future outside of their athletic ability. If they get hurt there are few ways they can make help society. This is not true with college athletes. While there are some that have no desire to get a college degree there are many that are enjoying the chance to get a free education while doing something they love. Check out these young men on Saturday and enjoy their love of the game.