2023 Ohio State spring football Kyle McCord

Kyle McCord Willing To Do Whatever It Takes To Get Job Done

To hear some people tell it, Ohio State’s quarterback competition will come down to the arm of Kyle McCord or the legs of Devin Brown. Brown is the more mobile option, while McCord is seen as the more standard pocket passer.

The truth of the matter, however, is that the job is going to be won by the quarterback who moves the ball the best and takes care of it better than anybody else. And the irony is that that will likely be decided instead by the feet of Kyle McCord and the arm of Devin Brown.

The backlash to CJ Stroud’s lack of running last year has some people thinking Brown’s mobility may give him an advantage, but it’s not like McCord is a stationary target just biding his time in the pocket until somebody strikes him down.

“Yeah, I would just say a playmaker,” is how McCord described himself as a quarterback this spring. “Whatever the team needs me to do to win, that’s what I’m gonna do. Obviously, I think that the film will speak for itself, but at the end of the day, I’m just a competitor.”

Like Stroud, McCord would prefer to win with his arm first, but the thing about college football is that defenses don’t care about your preferences.

“Once I got to college, I think you realize that in order to play at this level, you have to be a good athlete,” McCord said. “And so that’s one of the things with [strength] coach Mick [Marotti] and his staff I’ve been focusing on, just speed and agility. And it’s not necessarily how fast your 40 time is. I think a lot of it is how quickly can you take a hard reset and get back on platform. Or can you evade the rush and get outside the pocket and extend the play? So just working in ways like that, I think had been a pivotal point of my training. And I think coach Mick and his staff have done a great job of that.”

Why Rush Things?

Even though Stroud didn’t gain many yards running last year, he certainly evaded the rush as McCord is talking about. Stroud was also able to reset and make accurate throws. McCord saw all of Stroud’s skill set on display in the playoff game against Georgia. In and out of the pocket, Stroud was always in command.

Like most quarterbacks, McCord has made a home in the pocket, but he’s no shut-in.

“In terms of getting outside the pocket, I think that’s something I’ve always been pretty comfortable with and something obviously I work at lot,” he said. “And then obviously getting the feel of when are you able to make a move in the pocket, or when do you have to escape in the pocket? I think that’s always something the more reps at, you get better at.”

Subscribe Promo banner

As McCord and Brown compete this spring, even though they won’t be permitted to be hit by the defense, evading the pass rush will still be key. And so will fighting on every play to pick up a first down by any means possible.

And for McCord, that’s what he believes he does best.

“Just being a competitor, I think is extremely important,” he said. “I think you look at last year, we played some teams that gave us different looks, which require you to run different things. And then you’re gonna have a game like Northwestern where you can’t really throw the ball that much. And you have to compete in other ways, whether it’s running the ball like CJ did last year. I would just say just competing, that would be the biggest thing.”

The quarterback competition will begin to ramp up over the next week as the Buckeyes finally put the pads on. They will hold their first spring scrimmage next Saturday.

Kyle McCord will get to show his full repertoire of skills over the next few five months or so, but the one that will carry him the furthest is the one that simply gets the job done.

Which is exactly how he wants it.

Go to discussion...