Even though Saturday’s SEC games were unaffected by Hurricane Matthew, there was so much sloppiness, they might as well have been played in a rainstorm. The eight quarterbacks combined for 11 interceptions, and that doesn’t count the four whose games were either delayed or postponed.
However, there were several quarterback duels that proved to be entertaining.
See how every SEC quarterback graded out Saturday:
Jalen Hurts: A-
Stats: 13 of 17 for 253 yards, 2 TDs, INT; 8 carries for 20 yards, 2 TDs
Don’t look now but Hurts is turning into a complete quarterback. Even though he was playing on the road against ranked Arkansas, the Alabama freshman diced up the defense like he was back playing against Houston North Shore High School. Hurts averaged 14.9 yards per pass attempt in the win and was responsible for 4 touchdowns. His 1 interception came after being hit while he was throwing. As Hurts continues to grow, so will Alabama.
Trevor Knight: B+
Stats: 17 of 34 for 239 yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs; 15 carries for 11 yards, 3 TDs
He might not fit the specific archetype we’ve come to expect from Texas A&M quarterbacks, but Knight has been an outstanding addition to the Aggies. Knight connected with Josh Reynolds and Christian Kirk for a combined 12 catches for 169 yards and 2 scores, which kept the defense honest. However, he made huge plays with his feet, including the decisive touchdown in double overtime. Texas A&M would not be a top-10 team without him.
Sean White: B
Stats: 14 of 18 for 204 yards, TD, INT
White’s numbers were modest, but he executed Rhett Lashlee’s game plan perfectly in Auburn’s win at Mississippi State. The workhorse running from Kamryn Pettway helped set up the pass, where White averaged 11.3 yards per pass attempt. If this efficient White can continue to show up the next few weeks, Auburn’s ceiling will quickly rise.
Austin Allen: B-
Stats: 25 of 48 for 400 yards, 3 TDs, 3 INTs
This grade is adjusted to show how much trouble Arkansas would be in without Allen in the lineup. Even though he threw 3 interceptions against Alabama, including a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown, Allen stood tall in the pocket and tried his best to withstand the Alabama front seven, even though the Crimson Tide broke through for 6 sacks and 12 QB hurries. He made as many plays as he could against the best defense in college football.
Joshua Dobbs: C
Stats: 28 of 47 for 398 yards, TD, 2 INTs; 17 carries for 57 yards, 2 fumbles
Dobbs was the ultimate feast or famine player on the day. He struggled at times during Tennessee’s double-overtime loss to Texas A&M but helped lead a massive comeback to tie the game at 35 at the end of regulation after an 18-yard pass to Alvin Kamara. However, he turned the ball over four times and threw a game-ending pick in the second overtime. Ultimately, the bad outweighed the good in the most prolific passing game of Dobbs’ career.
Nick Fitzgerald: C-
Stats: 17 of 34 for 181 yards, 2 TDs, INT; 17 carries for 61 yards
Fitzgerald’s final stat line wasn’t terrible, but he shrunk in the game’s biggest moments. Mississippi State fell behind 35-0 in the first half, all but ending the Bulldogs’ hopes of winning. Thirty-seven of Fitzgerald’s passing yards came on a throw to Keith Mixon to cut the deficit to 35-7. Ultimately, his performance was wholly inadequate to give MSU a chance to win.
Stephen Johnson: D
Stats: 10 of 24 for 49 yards, INT; 10 carries for 55 yards, TD
Johnson had a horrendous day throwing the ball for Kentucky, averaging just 2.0 yards per pass attempt against a solid-but-unspectacular Vanderbilt attack. However, his rushing yardage helped pace the offense in a much-needed win against the Commodores. This level of play won’t cut it against any other team on the Wildcats’ schedule.
Kyle Shurmur: D
Stats: 17 of 29 for 141 yards
Shurmur had an inconsistent performance against one of the worst defenses he will play this season, and his performance was not good enough to lead Vanderbilt to victory. Fifty passing yards came on the game’s final drive, when Shurmur led the Commodores down the field to the goal line, but he threw a series of incompletions as Kentucky held on for the victory.