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Is Drew Lock a top flight quarterback?

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One national outlet thinks he’s got a ways to go.

NCAA Football: Missouri at West Virginia
Can Drew Lock become a top tier QB?
Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

You may as well put a “5” after the jersey number of the Missouri Tiger’s quarterback.

Rising junior Drew Lock was ranked 35th in the country among starting quarterbacks by Athlon after throwing for 3,399 yards and 23 touchdowns in his first full season in charge. Lock will have essentially all the same talent around him when he returns in 2017 for his junior season, including a thousand yard running back, a thousand yard receiver and the entire offensive line.

Lock falls right near the middle of the SEC quarterbacks listed here, with Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham (12), Arkansas’s Austin Allen (14), Georgia’s Jacob Eason (21), and South Carolina’s Jake Bentley (24) ranked ahead of him. Ranked behind Lock are Kyle Shurmur (48) of Vanderbilt, Jarrett Guarantano (62) at Tennessee, Drew Barker (76) at Kentucky, and Feleipe Franks (77) at Florida.

Ranked immediately behind Lock is Idaho’s Matt Linehan (36), who Missouri plays in their third game this season. Other non-conference match-ups include David Blough (45) of Purdue and familiar foe Bryant Shirreffs (124) on the road against Connecticut.

You may recall Drew Lock was the #7 rated pro-style quarterback in the 2015 recruiting cycle, behind #1 rated Josh Rosen who is ranked 10th, and #3 Jake Browning who is ranked 5th according to Athlon. Notably, Arkansas quarterback Ty Storey was rated just ahead of Lock in that class and is currently the backup for Austin Allen.

There’s certainly something to the observation that a deeper look at Lock’s numbers reveal areas in need of improvement. Lock had the same number of turnovers against Georgia (3) as he did in back to back blowout losses on the road to the elite defenses of Florida and LSU, plus all ten of his interceptions came against SEC opponents.

Lock’s home-road completion percentages splits also do him no favors, dropping from 60.8% to 46.6%. Better competition also hurt him as his 53.3% passing in conference play was fairly reflective of his 54.6% overall rate. Of course, last October was Missouri’s toughest stretch as the Tigers lost four straight vs LSU, Florida, Middle Tennessee State and Kentucky and Lock’s completion rating dipped to 46.8% before rebounding in November.

The SEC suddenly lacks for star-power from the quarterback position and Drew Lock could look step into that limelight. National writers are keeping an eye on him and his progress, specifically with regards to his ability to read defenses. But as we at Rock M Nation noted here “His progression in this regard will determine whether Mizzou tops out as a top-30 or top-40 offense”.

So what do you think of the rankings? Should Lock be seeded higher? Lower?

Poll

Is Drew Lock ranked accurately?

This poll is closed

  • 35%
    Too low
    (293 votes)
  • 10%
    Too high
    (88 votes)
  • 54%
    About right
    (455 votes)
836 votes total Vote Now