On the biggest stage he was masterful, completing 20-of-28 passes for 264 yards and 4 TDs in Bama’s dominating BCS Championship Bowl win over Notre Dame.
After all was said and done, his TD/INT ratio was 10:1 (30 touchdowns, 3 interceptions).
His completion percentage and yards per attempt were exceptional last year at 67.2-percent and 9.3 YPA, respectively.
McCarron has re-branded himself to NFL scouts from the “Greg McElroy-game-manager” type to a legit starting QB prospect at the next level.
3) Jake Matthews, LT, Texas A&M – Grade: 28.8 (9.5 T / 9.5 Prod / 9.8 Proj)
Matthews comes from one of the greatest football families in history. His dad is Hall of Fame tackle Bruce Matthews. His brother, Kevin, also played at A&M. His uncle Clay Matthews, like his dad, played 19 NFL seasons and went to four Pro Bowls. He also has two cousins currently in the NFL. Clay Matthews III is one of the best pass rushers in the game, and his other cousin Casey is on the Philadelphia Eagles roster.
Jake will be the next to join the list, and he’ll likely do so as one of the top three picks in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Last season, Matthews manned the right tackle spot because Luke Joeckel – the No. 2 overall pick in the 2013 draft – was the incumbent at left tackle.
Even with Joeckel at the left spot, many scouts and coaches think Matthews was, is, and will be the superior player.
His gene pool would suggest that’s probably a wise assumption.
2) Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M – Grade: 29.0 (10.0 T/ 10.0 Prod/ 9.0 Proj)
One more time, just so they sink in: 3,706 passing yards, 26 TD, 9 INT
1,409 rushing yards, 21 TD
1 Heisman Trophy
The only thing holding Johnny Football back is how his talent translates to the next level.
He’s already established himself as one of the greatest college football players of all-time, and I don’t think that’s hyperbole.
No one has ever had a freshman season in the same stratosphere as Manziel’s in 2012.
But at just 6-feet-1 and with unspectacular arm strength, will his magic run out at the next level, or is he the next Russell Wilson? Judging by his tweets this offseason, we may find out in 2014…
1) Jadaveon Clowney, DE, S. Carolina – Grade: 30.0 (10.0 T / 10.0 Prod / 10.0 Proj)
He’s a full point better than the Johnny Football.
His tackles register on the Richter scale.
His dreadlocks are a trophy from a bare knuckle brawl with The Predator.
He would have intercepted the Immaculate Reception.
Nick Saban recruited him to be his defense. His entire defense.
All-State is insured by his hands.