Perhaps you disagree, but at least on paper, I see Ole Miss’ Chad Kelly as the best quarterback Georgia will face this season. So I got a little excited when I saw this blurb:
Does QB Chad Kelly have enough talent around him to reach or exceed last year’s numbers?
“He has enough at the skill position, but what he has at left tackle is a big question mark and could greatly impact his game. Kelly was much better the second half of last season. [Emphasis added.] His turnovers were down, his decisions were better, and he ran the ball more. Two things happened: He grew into his position, and he added a potential No. 1 overall pick at left tackle in Laremy Tunsil. Tunsil, suspended for the first seven games last year, is now gone, and the starter could be a redshirt freshman or true freshman.
“Laquon Treadwell is gone, but the Rebels have recruited well and have guys I think will make plays at wide receiver that most folks haven’t heard about yet. Kelly will be more poised and comfortable, but they’re going to have to do some things to buy him time until they become settled at left tackle.”
Great, hunh? Except when I pulled up Kelly’s game log from last season, that’s not the story his passer rating told. To start with, his most impressive performance of the season may have come in game three (mid-suspension, in other words) against Alabama, against whom he averaged more than ten yards per attempt and racked up a 171.35 rating, sixteen points higher than his season average.
Tunsil’s first game back was against Texas A&M and that may have been Kelly’s worst game of 2015. He wasn’t particularly stellar against Auburn the following week. In those two games combined, he threw five interceptions. He did have some good games down the stretch, particularly against Arkansas (although Ole Miss lost) and Oklahoma State, but overall, I don’t see the dramatic improvement claimed in the above quote, either.
Now that being said, if Ole Miss starts a true freshman at left tackle, that may indeed pose a problem, but I don’t see where Laremy Tunsil made Chad Kelly what he was last season.