Barrett Sallee has written one of those typical “it’s May, so let’s post about something” pieces, in this case, a look at Joshua Dobbs’ Heisman possibilities. It’s a fair look in that he’s not advocating either way – and as he notes, Dobbs is currently tenth on the early list – so it’s something I didn’t really pay attention to in the sense that, sure, it could go either way.
Until I saw this.
At which point, I was suddenly in wait a minute mode. With whatever preseason hype he’s getting, Dobbs couldn’t have been that mediocre a passer last season, could he? Actually, he could and he was. His passer rating for 2015 was 127.01. That was good for eighth in the conference and 70th nationally. His average yards per attempt, 6.7, was a full yard less than Grayson Lambert’s. Sure, for a quarterback, he’s a dynamic runner, as we saw when he played Georgia, but to see all this as a basis for projecting him to become one of the best players in the country this season borders on wishful thinking, doesn’t it?
I’m not saying this to knock Dobbs, who by all accounts is a great kid and a terrific student. But I am wondering if some of what we’re all projecting for Tennessee this season is based on the prevailing wisdom that it’s one of the few teams in the SEC that has a big advantage at quarterback based on having a returning starter there. If that turns out not to be the case and what we’ve seen from Dobbs is really about all they’ll get, what’s a more realistic appraisal of the Vols’ chances?