When Georgia Tech starting quarterback Vad Lee decided to transfer to James Madison University, it left a spot to be filled at the QB position. Lee’s decision to move on leaves head coach Paul Johnson with a huge decision to make concerning who is going to be the signal-caller for Tech going forward.
Johnson could go with sophomore Justin Thomas, who has at least taken a few snaps in his short collegiate career, or he could turn to the new kid on the block in freshman recruit, Matthew Jordan.
Matthew Jordan stands 6-foot-2, 200 pounds which is a solid size for a quarterback. When you factor in that Jordan runs a 4.5 second 40-meter dash to go along with that size, you have a potential college prodigy that could run Johnson’s option offense and be a beast to tackle when he keeps the ball. Jordan, according to composite rankings, was ranked as the No.31 dual-threat player at the QB position.
It’s not as though Justin Thomas didn’t have flashes of brilliance in the few times that he took the field. He completed 9 of 17 passes last season for 131 yards with a TD and two picks. He also averaged 7.1 yards per carry, rushing 33 times for 234 yards and two TDs, which is actually a feather in Thomas’ cap.
This really isn’t a clear cut decision for Johnson, especially since neither one of these kids has a lot of experience. So this is going to have to come down to who he feels is going to give him the best chance of winning, not just for this season, but also in the future.
The likely scenario is that both quarterbacks will enter spring practice with an equal chance at winning the starting job. Johnson should seriously consider giving Jordan plenty of first team reps, since that size at 6-foot-2 and speed at 4.5 seconds is going to be hard to pass up.
The question will come up as to if it would be best to redshirt Jordan, and give him a chance to learn Johnson’s option offense and grow into a comfort level. While some Tech quarterbacks have shown that kind of time is needed, Johsnson should himself open to the idea of playing Jordan come regular season.
Justin Thomas’ size does not knock your socks off, and neither does the fact that in the few passing attempts he did have, he threw two picks. If Johnson is serious about wanting to put the ball in the air a little bit more he should see what young Jordan has to offer.
Matthew Jordan should at least get the chance to show what he can do during spring ball, he has the tools that could fit the direction where Paul Johnson and the Yellow Jackets want to go.
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