ESPN's ranking of QB Tiers

Feb 19, 2020
Aidan O'Connell is in Tier 3. So per ESPN, he's a top 15 QB this year? Interesting writeup about him that I didn't know about.

Tier 1: Heisman or bust (3 players)
Tier 2: Heisman waiting room (3 players)
Tier 2a: What's a guy gotta do to get some Heisman love around here (1 player)
Tier 3: Pretty... pretty good (8 players)

Tier 3 / O'Connell comments:
"If you're nitpicking these guys, you simply don't like fun, but for the sake of it, each of these guys comes with some sort of asterisk...."

"But the most interesting name in this tier might be O'Connell. There were just five players to post a Total QBR of 85 or better last year. Three are in our top tier. Another won the national championship. The fifth player is O'Connell. O'Connell finished with 3,708 passing yards and 28 touchdowns and completed nearly 72% of his passes. Only four other Power 5 QBs who didn't play for Leach hit those marks in a season during the playoff era: Joe Burrow, Mac Jones, CJ Stroud and Baker Mayfield."

Tier 1 - Ohio State CJ Stroud
Tier 3 - Aidan O'Connell
Tier 7 - Michigan Cade McNamara and JJ McCarthy
Tier 7 - Michigan State Payton Thorne
Tier 7 - Maryland Taulia Tagovailoa
Tier 9 - Penn State Sean Clifford
Tier 9 - Minnesota Tanner Morgan
Tier 11 - Wisconsin Graham Mertz
Tier 13 - Indiana
Tier 14 - Nebraska
Tier 15 - Iowa
Tier 18 - Northwestern
Tier 18 - Illinois
Tier 18 - Rutgers

Other notables:
Tier 13 - Syracuse's Garrett Shrader
Tier 16 - Cal Jack Plummer
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Redshirt Freshman
Jul 25, 2021
Reading between the lines, it sounds like AOC could almost be 2b in this list.
?? They made a category for one player if he was 2B they would do the same. At best they are saying he is 8th best qb with a drop off from 7. I think that’s very fair. Typically good enough to get drafted in 6th or 7th round and make a practice squad. I don’t think he is heisman material but has a higher ceiling than 8th best QB if he continues to show the skill he did second half of last season without wright and bell.


May 29, 2001
If they were doing a tier for the overall team, we know IU would be at the Tier 18.
Are you talking tiers or tears?

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Redshirt Freshman
Jul 25, 2021
There are 6 starting QB's in the Big Ten worse than Graham Mertz? :oops:
There are a lot of unknowns this year in the big ten for starting QBs. Tommy Devito at Illinois could be a decent QB, not sure how he is tier 18. If Casey Thompson gets a grip on his career (pun intended), he could be a very good qb. Don’t know how you go from being a starting qb at Texas with good numbers playing through an injury to “tier 14”. ESPN hates the big ten.