Could Mayfield’s “antics” cost him the Heisman? If this race were closer, it might be possible, but the Sooners’ QB is running away with the award as of now.
The key to catching Mayfield is the ability to play for a conference title (meaning 2 games/opportunities to shine). That means Jonathan Taylor, Malik Rosier, JT Barrett, and Kelly Bryant will have such a stage. Bryce Love, Kerryon Johnson, and Jalen Hurts could also find themselves in such a position to rise should things go their way this weekend.
Overall, there remains some intrigue in the race. Mayfield could falter and another will still need a couple big performances to overtake the leader. Still, there is definitely a clear front-runner meaning the dynamic will need to change if anyone but Mayfield is to hoist the Trophy.
Others considered: QB Lamar Jackson (Louisville), RB Rashaad Penny (San Diego State), QB J.T. Barrett (Ohio State), QB Kelly Bryant (Clemson), and DB Minkah Fitzpatrick (Alabama)
10. QB Mason Rudolph [Last Week: #6] (Oklahoma State)—Despite throwing for 425 yards, the Cowboys’ QB tumbles after a loss to KSU. The inability to play for the Big 12 title means Rudolph won’t likely even earn an invite to NYC.
9. QB Jalen Hurts [Last Week: #9] (Alabama)— The Tide were able to put Mercer away early, and Hurts was perfect on just 7 passes. However, he managed an astounding 457.4 rating and tossed 3 TDs.
8. RB Josh Adams [Last Week: #8] (Notre Dame)—Adams regained a little ground by running for 100+ yards against Navy. He needs a big game against Stanford to earn an invite.
7. QB Malik Rosier [Last Week: #7] (Miami)—The Hurricanes’ QB threw for just north of 200 yards but also tossed two picks in a scarier than expected contest against UVA. His opportunity to gain enough traction for an invite will come against Clemson.
6. QB Khalil Tate [Last Week: #4] (Arizona)—Prior to this week, Tate’s lowest rushing total since Week 2 of the season was 137 yards. His 32 yards against the Ducks on Saturday definitely harm his chances of an invite to NYC. Still, despite not coming on until mid-season, his numbers are eye-popping.
5. RB Kerryon Johnson [Last Week: #10] (Auburn)— The fact that Johnson missed Week 2 (a key game against Clemson) and Week 3 and did not carry the ball more than 20 times until Week 5 harms his numbers (he is 22nd in rushing). Still, he may have the best chance to overtake Mayfield if he can put together big games against Alabama and Georgia (again).
4. RB Bryce Love [Last Week: #3] (Stanford)—Though stepping down from his torrid pace, Love put together solid numbers against Cal with 101 rushing yards. Now, however, he has fallen to #2 in rushing. His last chance to make a statement comes this week against Notre Dame.
3. RB Saquon Barkley [Last Week: #5] (Penn State)—Finally! Barkley was able to break free against lowly Nebraska, putting forward his best totals in both rushing and receiving since Week 4.
2. RB Jonathan Taylor [Last Week: #2] (Wisconsin)— Taylor came up big once again with 132 rushing yards against a stout Michigan D. He will need a huge performance against Ohio State to pass Mayfield. The freshman is #3 in rushing.
1. QB Baker Mayfield [Last Week #1] (Oklahoma)— The Sooners’ signal caller did not need to do much against Kansas for his team to win nor was much required to stay in the lead for the Trophy. Still, he threw for 257 yards with 3 TDs. Perhaps the greatest threat to his candidacy are his antics that, well, make him hard to like.