Drew Lock is setting passing records at Missouri to begin the season, but he’d probably like a do-over in his quest for one. The sophomore went 119 attempts before tossing his first interception of the year in his team’s 28-27 heartbreaking loss to Georgia on Saturday, the third-best pick-free streak to open a Tigers season since 2000.
Lock, in fact, threw 3 interceptions on the day, the most of any SEC quarterback in Week 3. He finished with 376 yards and 3 touchdowns on 23 of 38 passes. Lock’s 1,106 passing yards is the most in Mizzou history through the first three games of a season. The sophomore ranks fourth in the category in the FBS, trailing three Air Raid system signal-callers: Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes (1,493), Cal’s Davis Webb (1,359), and Washington State’s Luke Falk (1,106).
All of Lock’s picks against Georgia occurred in a second-half meltdown. The sophomore torched the Bulldogs secondary for 322 yards and 2 touchdowns in the first half, but a combination of poor decisions and defensive adjustments precipitated the turnovers. In the third quarter, he was 3 of 7 for 36 yard with 2 picks and a score as Georgia moved to a Cover 2 formation. Lock threw into double coverage on all 3 INTs, two intended for WR J’Mon Moore on his weak side, and another to freshman wideout Chris Black in the slot.
“The first one I just got greedy with my arm,” Lock explained after the game. “I felt like I could make a play and it’s something I wish that I could take back. The second one was kind of the same attack that I had in the first half — I just threw it behind him. It was a bad throw.”
Lock’s final interception hurt the most. Down 27-21 with 8:09 to go in the fourth quarter, the sophomore forced a pass into the end zone on third-and-5 from the Georgia 18-yard line. Intended for Moore, Bulldogs’ defensive back Quincy Mauger made an acrobatic grab to deny the touchdown. The pick terminated a 14-play drive and the Tigers went scoreless the rest of the game.
— Justen Gammel (@gamscout) September 19, 2016
Costliest INT of the Week
Lock’s final pick was costly, but not nearly as ruinous as Chad Kelly’s lone interception Saturday. The Ole Miss quarterback tossed a pick-six in the school’s 48-43 loss to No. 1 Alabama. It proved to be the Crimson Tide’s game-winning score.
Trailing 41-30, Kelly had few options down field on a third-and-9 play from the Alabama 20-yard line with 5:28 remaining. The pocket collapsed quickly. Instead of conceding a sack, Kelly rushed an ill-advised throw to his left with defenders bearing down. Linebacker Tim Williams raked the quarterback’s arm and the attempted pass fluttered over the line and straight into the arms of tackle Jonathan Allen. The senior marched 75 yards down the field for his first collegiate touchdown. Take a look:
Kelly took the blame after the loss. “It’s on me,” the senior signal caller told reporters after the game. “I gave them a free 14 points, just like that.” Kelly also coughed up a fumble at the Ole Miss 1-yard line in the third quarter, which the Alabama defense scooped up for a game-tying score.
Ugliest INT of the Week
Jacob Eason made his first truly poor play in a UGA uniform with his lone pick in the win over Mizzou. On the third play of the second half, the true freshman badly telegraphed a pass that Tigers’ backup safety and converted slot receiver Cam Hilton undercut and returned 27 yards to the Bulldogs 6-yard line. Mizzou scored a touchdown on the next play.
Eason redeemed himself, however, tossing a 20-yard touchdown pass to Isaiah McKenzie on a fourth-and-10 play with 1:31 remaining in the dramatic come-from-behind win.
Unluckiest INT of the Week
Tennessee’s Josh Dobbs gets credit for the most unfortunate INT on Saturday. His one pick on Saturday slipped through the hands of wide receiver Preston Williams, ricocheting off his facemask straight into the hands of Ohio cornerback Randy Stites. The sophomore wideout was guilty of trying to turn and run before looking in the pass. He owes Dobbs one.
Forgivable INT of the Week
Kentucky quarterback Drew Barker gets the free pass this week. On the third play of the Wildcats’ 62-42 home victory over New Mexico State, the sophomore looked all out of sorts after taking a hit on the previous snap. Barker faked a handoff the wrong way, and from a clean pocket, sailed a pass over his target’s head by nearly 10 feet. It landed straight into the arms of an Aggies defender.
The training staff escorted Barker to the locker room following the drive, and he never returned to the game. Fans later learned the starting quarterback aggravated a back injury that’s plagued him since the summer. Coach Mark Stoops told reporters in his weekly Monday press conference that it flared up in the 45-7 defeat to Florida in Week 2.
Barker’s stat line reveals maybe it occurred in the opening loss to Southern Miss; he is 7 for 17 for 47 yards and 4 interceptions since the first half of Kentucky’s 44-35 loss to the Golden Eagles. Nonetheless, dealing with back pain is tough and we give the Kentucky quarterback a little remorse following his most recent pick.
Below is a list of the SEC quarterbacks throwing interceptions last weekend, including their total number of picks on the season:
|NAME||TEAM||WEEK 3 INTs||TOTAL INTs|
|Luke Del Rio||Florida||1||2|
|Chad Kelly||Ole Miss||1||4|