SDS is continually counting down the top 25 players in the SEC for 2013, and we’re not stopping until we get to No. 1. I know you’ll agree with every single one…
No. 25 Zach Mettenberger, QB, LSU (SR)
2013 stats: 192 of 296 (64.9%), 3,082 yards, 22 TDs, 8 INTs
Why he’s No. 25: Zach Mettenberger was one of the most improved players not only in the SEC, but also in college football. Mett threw just 12 TDs and seven INTs in 2012, and he made a big jump with 22 TDs and eight INTs this past year. He finished with the second highest passer rating behind Johnny Manziel, and he averaged 10.4 yards per attempt, the highest in the SEC.
Because Mett’s game took a jump, it allowed RB Jeremy Hill and WRs Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry to put up some sick numbers. The quartet was so explosive, and the offense overcompensated for a defensive setback. For the first time in school history, LSU finished with a 3,000-yard passer, 1,000-yard rusher and two 1,000-yard receivers, and Mett, under new OC Cam Cameron, was the catalyst for a much-improved, destructive and balanced offense.
Mettenberger made quicker, more decisive decisions with the football, and he really increased his value as an NFL quarterback. Yes, he’s lethargic and slow around the pocket and struggles escaping any kind of pressure, but his accuracy is surgical when given proper time to find an open receiver.
Mett’s game went to levels I didn’t think were possible, especially after being one of the more underachieving quarterbacks in the 2012 season.
Photo Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports