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Friday, March 4, 2016

Auburn's Quarterbacks: Then & Now

Last week we looked into the offensive line and and the T.E. positions. Looking ahead at what Auburn might try to accomplish, and of course list the players names that are on the roster for the spring practice sessions.

For the official 2016 spring roster click HERE

Let's talk Quarterbacks today. Shall we?

My answer to that question is: We might as well get this over with. 

Honestly though, it is the hot topic when we talk Auburn football this preseason. Amazing what a difference a year makes. 

This time last year we were all sure that Jeremy Johnson was going to be Auburn's starting QB and with all of the glowing reports of Sean White's days of Trent Dilfer and the Elite 11 Quarterback Challenge, everybody just knew we had a solid backup to Johnson when it came to mop up time. 

Yeah. Never really materialized.

Jeremy Johnson was tabbed to be the Auburn starter, and what we saw was a shell of what we had come to expect from Jeremy.
Gus Malzahn w/ Johnson. photo by

**stats from

As the season progressed Johnson's output started to decline, and the number of Interceptions kept increasing. The most troubling aspect of the Johnson decline was when he started holding onto the ball longer, and eventually getting sacked, instead of throwing the ball away. This eventually led to Gus inserting Red Shirt Freshman Sean White into the lineup.
Sean White. photo via

**stats from

Regardless of the reasoning, Auburn's quarterback play was dismal at times in 2015. Not all of which can be blamed on the QB's. We will address some of them when we talk about the Wide Outs in our next post.

Gus Malzahn and his staff went out and recruited the top Dual-Threat QB in the JUCO ranks, and signed John Franklin III. Franklin comes to Auburn with world class speed, and what has been described as a very strong arm. Think Nick Marshall with a better arm at this point in his career. 

In Senior Marcus Davis'  first press conference this spring, he eluded to the voluntary passing sessions with newcomer John Franklin III. 
 Plus, Tyler Queen is healthy now. Gus says that Queen is on a "pitch count." Meaning the Doctors have limited the amount of full throws that Tyler Queen can make to keep him on a healthy recovery. A recovery from elbow surgery. 

""The procedure is “similar” to Tommy John surgery that many baseball pitchers undergo to repair the ulnar collateral ligament in their elbows, and Malzahn said the hope is to have Queen back in the fold for spring practice next March.""

When the fall camp starts there will be another name in the mix for the starting QB job. Heralded Dual-Threat QB Woody Barrett. Barrett is the guy that Gus Malzahn said they've recruited for three years to bring into their system.

The hope of course is that in 2016 quarterback play will be much improved.

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