Former Ole Miss quarterback Shea Patterson was one of the most sought after transfers this past offseason, but one college football expert believes he would have lost the starting job in 2018 had he stayed with the Rebels.
According to Sports Illustrated’s Andy Staples, senior Jordan Ta’amu, who took over after Paterson experienced a knee injury late last season, would have retained the starting job even if the former starter hadn’t transferred.
Patterson signed with Michigan in April and was granted immediate eligibility, despite having started 10 games during his first two seasons at Ole Miss.
The former 5-star prospect took over for the Rebels during the final three games of his freshman season after former starter Chad Kelly experienced a torn ACL and a torn lateral meniscus.
Patterson threw for 2,259 yards, 17 touchdowns and 9 interceptions on 166 of 260 passing in 2017, despite being limited to just 10 games. He finished eighth among SEC quarterbacks in passing yards and sixth in passing touchdowns, prior to experiencing a torn PCL on Oct. 21.
Ta’amu took over in his absence and also recorded impressive numbers, despite limited playing time.
Ta’amu also led the Rebels to a 3-2 record as a starter during their final five games.
However, it’s hard to imagine that Patterson — who many believed would have been one of the best returning quarterbacks in the SEC — would presumably lose his starting job after returning from injury.
Still, the Rebels should be fine with Ta’amu under center, especially after five games as the team’s starting quarterback.
He was going to lose the starting job to Ta’amu. That’s not really a knock on Patterson. Ta’amu is just really good. They can both be very productive starters.
— Andy Staples (@Andy_Staples) May 17, 2018