In recent years, Ohio State has produced several Quarterbacks that have made it to the NFL but that have not panned out for the teams that picked them up. With the news that Dwayne Haskins has declared for the NFL draft, today we’ll be looking at previous Ohio State quarterbacks and evaluating whether or not Haskins can break the trend of former Buckeye quarterbacks who have been unable to find success in the NFL.
Troy Smith 2003-2006
The 2006 Heisman Trophy winner was selected by the Ravens in the 5th round of the 2007 NFL draft. Smith’s career with the Ravens lasted just 3 seasons where he played in just 14 games, completing only 48 passes for 558 yards and 3 touchdowns. He then played one season with the 49ers and played in 6 games, completing 73 passes for 1,176 yards with 5 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. The Heisman Trophy winner showed flashes with his time in the NFL, but couldn’t manage to get significant playing time. Smith retired from the NFL in 2014 after playing 2 seasons in the CFL.
Terrelle Pryor 2008-2010
Terrelle Pryor was selected by the Raiders in the 3rd round of the 2011 supplemental draft. Pryor has moved around from the Raiders to the Browns, Redskins, Jets and Bills, and is now a free agent after stints with the Jets and Bills this season. As a quarterback, Pryor’s numbers are 175-311 for 1,994 yards with 9 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. After failing to find significant success at the quarterback position, Pryor transitioned to play wide receiver. As a wide receiver, he has caught 115 receptions for 1,563 and 7 touchdowns. Pryor’s best season as a pro came in 2016 as a wide receiver with the Browns, when he managed to catch 77 passes for 1,007 yards and 4 touchdowns. With him now a free agent, his career may be over if there are no teams that will give the 29 year old another chance.
Braxton Miller 2011-2015
Braxton Miller was drafted by the Texans in the 3rd round as a wide receiver. In his two seasons with the Texans, Miller caught 34 passes for 261 yards and two touchdowns. After the Texans got Keke Coutee in the 2018 draft, they didn’t have much of a need for Miller and cut him before the regular season. He has since been added to the Eagles practice squad and the latest news on Miller is that he has been practicing as a cornerback for the Eagles with all the injuries their secondary has sustained. With the likes of Golden Tate, Nelson Aguilar, and Alshon Jeffery at wide receiver, the Eagles are deep at the position but Miller has potential to be a great playmaker if called upon. Miller is the type of player that needs the right system,and I personally think that the Patriots could potentially benefit from Miller as a slot receiver.
Cardale Jones 2013-2015
Cardale Jones was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the 4th round of the 2016 NFL draft, after only starting 11 games for the Buckeyes. The Bills traded Jones to the Chargers for a conditional pick, and he is currently the 3rd string quarterback behind Philip Rivers and Geno Smith. Jones could eventually get his shot at a starting gig but in the meantime he should take full advantage of sitting behind Philip Rivers, watching closely and learning how to become a great quarterback. Jones has played in just one game in his young NFL career, completing 6 of 11 passes for 96 yards and an interception. Philip Rivers isn’t getting any younger and we’ve seen what Geno Smith can do from his time with the Jets, so it could be just a matter of time before Jones gets a shot to start for the Chargers.
J.T Barrett 2014-2017
Barrett wasn’t selected in the NFL draft, but was signed by the Saints to a three year deal as a UDFA. He has since been added and dropped from the Saints practice squad 11 times, and is currently a free agent. The Saints clearly see something they like in Barrett, but they already have 3 quarterbacks on their roster in future Hall of Famer Drew Brees, trade candidate Teddy Bridgewater, and project player Taysom Hill. with Brees’ career soon coming to an end and Bridgewater as a potential trade candidate, Barrett could soon find himself back on the Saints roster after this season ends.
Dwayne Haskins 2017-2018
In 2017, Haskins had small playing time with former teammate J.T Barrett starting. With just 57 passing attempts, Haskins completed 40 of them for 565 yards and 4 touchdown passes and one interception. In a full season starting for the Buckeyes in 2018, Haskins was a Heisman Trophy candidate. Haskins completed 373 passes on 533 attempts for 70.0 completion percentage, with 4,831 yards, 50 touchdowns, and 8 interceptions. His rushing totals were not nearly as good, as he rushed for 108 yards on 78 carries but managed 4 additional touchdowns on the ground. Ultimately, the Heisman went to Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray who ran for over 1,000 yards and 12 touchdowns and had over 4,000 yards passing and 42 passing touchdowns. I believe if Dwayne Haskins is drafted by the right team, like the Giants where he can learn from Eli Manning (if he decides to play another season) and play with Odell Beckham Jr, Saquon Barkley, and Evan Engram, the Giants would have one of the best young offenses in the league and Haskins could definitely break the trend and become a great quarterback in the NFL.