Joe Burrow and Trevor Lawrence were two of the college quarterback’s most exciting prospects in recent years.
On Thursday Night Football, the two No. 1 overall picks face off on the big stage for the first time as Burrow and the Bengals host Lawrence and the Jaguars in the prime-time showdown.
These two players have a history both with each other and with opposing teams. Burrow and Lawrence met in the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship. Burrow will face his former coach, Urban Meyer, who was at Ohio State before Burrow transferred to LSU. Lawrence will have to watch his former teammate Tee Higgins, who tallied more receiving yards with Lawrence than any other player, catch passes from another QB.
These two quarters took different paths to this prime-time game. Let’s see how they got there.
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The path to becoming the overall first choice was very different for the two appellants.
Coming out of high school, Burrow was a four-star prospect, the nation’s No.210 in the 2015 class by 247Sports, and had signed up to the top school in his home state of Ohio.
Burrow was the Buckeyes’ replacement behind JT Barrett from 2015 to 2017. After Barrett left, Burrow faced Dwayne Haskins for the starting spot at Columbus, and when it emerged that Haskins would get the role, Burrow transferred to LSU. .
He started straight away at Baton Rouge, completing 57.8% of his passes for 2,894 yards with 16 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also ran 128 times for 399 yards with seven touchdowns. His senior campaign was historic, however, as he completed 76.3% of his passes for 5,671 yards with 60 touchdowns and just six interceptions, while rushing 115 times for 368 yards and five touchdowns. His 60 TD assists were the most in a single FBS season, and the result of 2019’s success as the Heisman Trophy to go along with many other accolades. Along the way, he led the Tigers to an unbeaten season and a national championship.
Burrow ended his LSU career with a 68.5% completion percentage with 76 touchdowns, 11 interceptions and 8,565 passing yards, as he rushed 243 times for 767 yards and scored 12 touchdowns.
Lawrence was a five-star prospect, but not just any five-star. He was an almost perfect recruit coming out of high school. According to 247Sports, he is the seventh highest-rated rookie since 2000, as he received almost unanimous praise as the best player in class of 2018.
Kelly Bryant was named Clemson’s starting quarterback to start the 2018 season, but after four games Lawrence passed him on the depths board. From there it was on another planet as the team went undefeated and won the national championship. That season, Lawrence completed 65.2% of his passes with 3,280 yards, 30 touchdowns and four interceptions.
In three seasons at Clemson, Lawrence has never lost a regular season game. In 2019, he took them to the college football playoffs again before falling to Burrow and LSU. The following year, Clemson reached the CFP again, only to be eliminated in the semifinals by Justin Fields and Ohio State.
Although Lawrence never walked away with the Heisman Trophy, his talent shone in the numbers he posted with the Tigers. He ended his career with a 66.6% completion percentage, 10,098 passing yards, 90 touchdowns and just 17 interceptions. He also ran 231 times for 943 yards and 18 touchdowns.
national championship 2019
Burrow and Lawrence have faced each other only once: the 2020 College Football Playoff National Championship.
It was a clash between the two undefeated Tigers at LSU and Clemson. LSU toppled Oklahoma in a 63-28 semifinal mauling, while Clemson survived a late Buckeyes push to win 29-23 to reach the final.
Clemson was the reigning National Champion, and while Burrow had led his team to a historic season, Clemson appeared to be Burrow’s toughest enemy of the season.
It turned out to be just the fourth tightest game of the season for LSU, a testament to the powerful offense he has displayed throughout the year. Only Auburn, Alabama and Texas finished within one touchdown during the year.
The two teams were tied after the first quarter, but LSU outscored Clemson 21-10 in the second quarter to take a 28-17 lead. Clemson added eight points in the third quarter, but LSU scored two more touchdowns to win 42-25.
Burrow finished the game with an unreal statistic of 31 passes for 49 with 463 yards and five touchdowns. His top receiver – and now Bengals teammate Ja’Marr Chase – caught nine of those passes for 221 yards and two touchdowns. Lawrence went 18 for 37 with 234 yards and lost a fumble, and he added 49 rushing yards and a score in 10 carries.
First global choices
This match was Burrow’s last in a Tigers uniform. He entered the 2020 NFL Draft as a clear favorite to go first in the overall standings, and he did so with the Bengals selecting him after finishing 2-14 last season with Andy Dalton as a quarterback. -back.
Lawrence had his final season with Clemson in 2020 before also choosing to leave for the NFL. Like Burrow, he was the favorite by far to be selected first overall. After a dismal 1–15 season, the Jaguars were given the pick.
Both quarterbacks immediately began their professional careers as starters. Like Lawrence, Burrow also went into his first three games without a win, though his numbers are much more promising – 64.54% completion rate, 821 passing yards, five passing touchdowns, a interception; 16 rushes for 64 yards and a score. His first victory came in week four against the Jaguars. Burrow’s first season ended early as he tore up his ACL and MCL in Week 11 against Washington. He finished the year with a 65.3% completion rate with 2,688 passing yards, 13 touchdowns and five interceptions, as he rushed for 142 yards on 37 carries with three touchdowns.
Burrow looked healthy in Week 1 when he helped the Bengals beat the Vikings 27-24 with 20 of 27 passes completed for 261 yards and two touchdowns. He struggled the following week against the Bears when he was selected three times and had only a 63.3% completion score, but rebounded in Week 3 with three touchdown passes and a 77.8% completion score with 172 yards. He was held back a bit in the rushed play, carrying the ball just six times over nine yards.
Lawrence is still looking for that first victory. He threw three touchdowns in Week 1 but also had three picks as he completed just 28 of 51 passes for 332 yards. The following week against the Broncos, he collected just 118 passing yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. Last Sunday it wasn’t much better as he collected 22 of 34 yards for 219 yards with a touchdown and two other picks. He had nine carries for 46 yards in those three games and lost two fumbles.