Heisman Watch: Top Ten Trophy Candidates

The Associated Press

Quarterbacks continue to dominate the Heisman picture as Christian McCaffrey tumbles all the way out of the list.

While there is still a lot of season left to play, I am limiting the list just to the top ten—removing the “Others to Watch” category, which is not needed at this stage of the season.

10. QB Seth Russell (Baylor)—There are limited undefeated Power 5 teams at this point with Russell at the helm of one. Baylor could make a run, and Russell has put up big stats in the past.

9. RB Dalvin Cook (Florida State)—Cook has put up massive numbers in his last three contests, but his candidacy is hurt by his team’s failure to live up to expectations. He has, however, emerged as the top running back vying for attention.

8. QB Greg Ward (Houston)—A couple of interceptions in the loss that derails his team’s playoff hopes really kills his candidacy. He needs a big second half to mount a comeback in the race.

7. QB Jalen Hurts (Alabama)—The freshman quarterback just put together his best game and seems to be improving. He will have plenty of opportunities to showcase his skills as the team enters the heart of SEC play.

6. ATH Jabrill Peppers (Michigan)—I understand the argument from the Peppers apologists, and I am a huge fan of his game. However, while this three-dimensional (offense, defense, and special teams) player is impactful, I am not sure he stands out enough on D to make a strong enough case.

5. QB Trevor Knight (TAMU)—Undefeated and riding high, the Aggies owe much to the transfer Knight. His 53% completion percentage is a certain strike against him, but, he is the unquestioned mid-season SEC MVP.

4. QB Jake Browning (Washington)—Statistically, Browning has not put up massive yardage, but his 23-2 ratio is mighty impressive as he leads a Huskies team ready to make a playoff run.

3. QB JT Barrett (Ohio State)—The Buckeye signal caller really struggled throwing the football against Indiana, but he did a lot with his feet. A visit to Wisconsin this week and matchups against Nebraska and Michigan ahead will give him chances to make a statement.

2. QB Deshaun Watson (Clemson)—Despite his marks from last season, Watson has yet to really wow. That said, his team is in the thick of the playoff hunt, his stats are still solid, and he beat Jackson head to head.

1. QB Lamar Jackson (Louisville)—Jackson did not play this week but still maintains his lead in the Heisman race.


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