The 2021 college football season has mostly come to a close, and the football world is looking ahead to the showcases that follow for players who have declared for the 2022 NFL Draft. There is a host of talent across several positions in the East-West Shrine Bowl. Here’s what you need to know about each quarterback in attendance—all of which are expected to be late-round selections or priority UDFAs.
Dustin Crum, Kent StateCrum and the Golden Flashes didn’t end the season or his career in the way that was desired, dropping a 52-38 game against Wyoming in the Potato Bowl after losing the MAC Championship, 41-23 to NIU. The Potato Bowl was still a phenomenal showing for Crum in his own right, though, with one of the biggest highlights of the dual-threat quarterback’s outing being a 73-yard deep touchdown pass that capped off his career and showed his arm strength and accuracy. Crum completed 64.1% of his passes for 3,238 yards with 20 touchdowns and six interceptions. He also had 703 rushing yards and 12 scores on the ground. That brings him to career totals of a 66.7% completion percentage, 7,449 passing yards, 55 touchdowns, 12 interceptions, 2,071 rushing yards, and 24 rushing touchdowns.
Jack Coan, Notre DameIt’s been an up and down season for Coan, but the highs have been notable. Coan finished out the season with a 65.7% completion percentage, 3,150 passing yards, 25 touchdowns, and seven interceptions. Coan had a good game in the Fiesta Bowl, setting a bowl game passing record against No. 9-ranked Oklahoma State as he completed 36 of 88 passing attempts for 509 yards with five touchdowns and one interception. Despite some success in his lone season as Notre Dame’s starting quarterback, Coan is largely seen as a game manager—a conservative quarterback who will take care of the football and do well in situations where a conservative mindset is called for. There are question marks surrounding how well he can consistently take shots and deal with more aggressive play-calling when big-time moments are needed. We may get some answers during Shrine Bowl week.
D’Eriq King, Miami (FL)This is a good opportunity for King to bounce back and show what he brings to the table after playing in just three games in the 2021 season due to a shoulder injury. Within that small sample size lies a turnover issue. King threw for 767 yards and three touchdowns but turned the ball over six times, so taking care of the football is certainly something he’ll want to do in this showcase. King is a versatile quarterback who will continue to show his vast skill set during Shrine Bowl week. Over a lengthy college career, King completed 63.1% of his passes for 8,378 yards with 76 touchdowns and 19 interceptions.
Brock Purdy, Iowa State2021 wasn’t a perfect season for Purdy, but he showed a lot of growth between this past year and the one before. In 2020, he struggled in several aspects, especially with pocket awareness. But 2021 was a different story and finished out the year with a completion percentage of 71.7%, 3,188 passing yards, 19 touchdowns, and eight interceptions. Over four seasons at Iowa State, Purdy holds multiple Cyclones records and completed 67.7% of his passes for 12,170 yards with 81 touchdowns and 33 interceptions. Despite some of the success he’s had this year with a standout “Brocktober,” Purdy will be eager for redemption after he didn’t put on the best performance in the Cheez-It Bowl, completing 59% of his passes with one touchdown and one costly interception in the 20-13 loss.
Skylar Thompson, Kansas StateThompson, like King, also struggled with injury this season. Thompson, who has been solid in most aspects whenever he’s fully healthy, appeared in nine regular-season games this season and was able to return to action to end the year off with a big Texas Bowl win as the Wildcats downed the LSU Tigers 42-20. This marked Thompson’s first appearance since Nov. 20, as he completed 21-of-28 passes for three touchdowns with zero interceptions. The Shrine Bowl presents a good opportunity for him to build off that strong performance. Thompson finished the season with a completion percentage of 69.5%, 2,113 passing yards, 12 touchdowns, and four interceptions.
EJ Perry, BrownPerry may be the least-known name on this list. He’s one of the best players to ever come through Brown and brings to the table good athleticism, throws with touch, and works the pocket well. Perry completed 66.5% of his passes for 3,034 yards with 23 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. He also had seven rushing touchdowns in 2021. Perry might be the most intriguing quarterback to watch during Shrine Bowl week, as he could be a 2022 NFL Draft riser.
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