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2020 Texas Longhorns Position Preview: Quarterbacks

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And just like that, three years with Sam Ehlinger as the quarterback of the Longhorns have gone by. Heading into his senior season, Ehlinger will try to take the Longhorns to a place that they have never been to, the College Football Playoff.

Besides Sam Ehlinger, the quarterback room finally looks to have some much needed depth. The candidates to replace Ehlinger in 2021 will be able to learn from him in 2020, which should help the team’s transition.

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However, the 2020 Longhorns quarterback preview is all about Sam Ehlinger. If you want a more in depth look at Sam’s potential successors for next season, click here. Today’s Longhorns position preview concludes our look on the offensive side of the ball. We have looked at the running backs, wide receivers, tight ends and the offensive line so far.

 

2020 Quarterback Preview:

QB1: Sam Ehlinger (Senior)

2019 Stats: 3,663 passing yards, 32 passing TDs, 151.8 QBR, 663 yards rushing and 7 rushing TDs.

Ehlinger’s Texas fandom has been well documented and it doesn’t hurt that he grew up less than 20 minutes away from the 40 acres. However, even Sam Ehlinger himself might not have dreamed of how successful he would be in burnt orange.

He is within 4,400 career passing yards of breaking Colt McCoy’s school record. Although in order to break that mark in 2020, Ehlinger would have to put up a Heisman Trophy-winning season. Numbers aside, this season provides Ehlinger and the Longhorns with a legitimate chance to win it all.

However, in order to even make it to the College Football Playoff, Ehlinger will need several members of his offense to step up. Ehlinger can no longer rely on throwing the ball to Devin Duvernay and Collin Johnson, as the pair of wide receivers have since graduated. He will need guys like Brennan Eagles and Jake Smith to take major steps in their progression in order to lead the Longhorns to a Big 12 title.

 

QB2: Casey Thompson (Redshirt Sophomore)

2019 Stats: 84 passing yards and 1 rushing TD.

Thanks to Sam Ehlinger, Thompson has not seen a lot of action on the field. Entering the 2020 season, Thompson will be the team’s second-string quarterback for the second year in a row. Casey’s role this season is to be game ready. He was able to showcase his mobility in the Longhorns’ 2019 spring game, however Thompson would benefit from receiving more snaps. Despite his current role, Casey is one of the leading candidates for next year’s starting quarterback job.

 

Fringe QB2 / QB3: Hudson Card (Freshman)

2019 High School Stats (courtesy of 247Sports): 2,288 passing yards, 24 passing TDs and 5 rushing TDs.

Entering the 2020 season, Card will compete with Thompson for the backup quarterback job. Hudson showed off his potential during his time as the quarterback at Lake Travis, however he will likely spend this season learning the ropes. He will provide necessary depth at the position while preparing himself for the 2021 quarterback battle.

 

QB3: Ja’Quinden Jackson (Freshman)

2019 High School Stats (courtesy of 247Sports): 1,711 passing yards, 21 passing TDs, 1,030 rushing yards and 16 rushing TDs.

One of the most exciting things to see out of Texas’s fall camp has been Ja’Quinden Jackson. Why? Because it has been great to see him back on the field after suffering a partially torn ACL last December. Jackson’s potential is off the charts, however I would not expect the Longhorns to rush him into action. Similar to Card, Jackson is best suited to use this season as a learning curve and to prepare himself for the 2021 starting quarterback battle.

 

Outlook:

What the Longhorns are starting to build at the quarterback position is very exciting. The team now has some serious depth and is starting to land some of the nation’s top talent. If several offensive weapons step up this season, expect Sam Ehlinger to have a monster year under new offensive coordinator, Mike Yurcich. The team’s success is contingent on Ehlinger’s arm, however the Longhorns’ backfield should take some pressure off of Sam in 2020. In addition, Texas’s other quarterbacks will be able to use this season to soak up Yurcich’s playbook, helping them to prepare for their 2021 quarterback battle.

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