QB Justin Fields, Ohio State
HOMETOWN (HIGH SCHOOL): Kennesaw, GA (Harrison)
247 RATING: .9998
POSITION RANK: 2
Passing: 3,601 yards (67.4%), 45 touchdowns, 3 interceptions
Rushing: 750 yards (4.2 ypc), 14 touchdowns
Passing: 3,273 yards (67.2%), 41 touchdowns, 3 interceptions
Rushing: 484 yards (3.5 ypc), 10 touchdowns
Justin Fields Breakdown
– Arm strength
– Short to medium throws
– Deep passes
– Field vision
Justin Fields bet on himself. He left Georgia after being highly recruited, and took his talents to Columbus to play for Ohio State. Doubt crept in after he made the decision, but his new teammates welcomed him with open arms. After a full year as a starter, and a trip to the College Football Playoff, it’s no longer a matter of if he fits in with the Buckeyes. It’s how good they can become with him running the show.
Fans in Columbus weren’t sure what they were getting when Fields came to campus, but they quickly found out last year. First, they saw the arm strength that allows him to make deep throws and also zip the ball into tight windows. His accuracy on short to intermediate throws is impressive because he doesn’t need much of an opening to fit the pass. What he’ll need to improve upon is his deep passes and touch.
Fields has a strong arm, and there’s not a throw that he can’t make, but sometimes he tries to force the ball into a window that’s not there when he could lob it over a defender. At times he gets too focused on one man and tries to make something happen that’s not actually available, and staring down his receiver lets the defense close any windows. It also leads to turnovers, though those aren’t a concern, but they can become one.
Opposing defenses not only have to defend Fields’ arm, but tackling him becomes a challenge as well. His pocket presence makes him aware of a collapsing pocket and he seems to know where pass rushers are even if he can’t see them. If a defense has a hand on him, he’s too strong to be taken down with an arm tackle, and he’s able to stay upright while keeping his eyes downfield at the same time. Once he’s in the open field, his speed takes over from there. Now that he’s had a full year of experience with the Ohio State playbook, he can elevate his game to another level, which is scary considering he dominated without having an in-depth knowledge of what was going on. Good luck stopping that.