Missouri Football: Drew Lock complimented by Super Bowl-winning QB

COLUMBIA, MO - SEPTEMBER 16: Quarterback Drew Lock
COLUMBIA, MO - SEPTEMBER 16: Quarterback Drew Lock /

The Missouri Tigers have a quarterback with an NFL arm on their roster, but Drew Lock has yet to completely grasp the cerebral aspect of his craft.

In the 27 games that Lock has played for Missouri, one thing is for certain: He lacks the ability to consistently read a defense, and makes some costly pass interceptions at the worst times.

So far, 2016 was the season where Lock achieved his best pass-completion percentage, at 55%. In 2015, he completed 49 percent of his passes, and so far this year, he’s completed 50%.

The freshman and sophomore years are mostly developmental for quarterbacks, as well as for most skill players on a team, but by the time they reach their junior and, sometimes, senior years, athletes are expected to have attained as high a level of performance as possible.

Missouri Tigers Football
Missouri Tigers Football /

Missouri Tigers Football

For the most part, quarterbacks are pretty well adjusted to the collegiate-level of competition by mid-season of their second year. While Lock’s numbers from his second year are solid, he still made some decisions which left most of us believing he’d have his play cleaned-up by the start of the 2017 season.

We heard it in the offseason, then around the spring game, and we heard it again at the SEC Media Days: Lock stated he’d spent the winter working on his defensive reads and improving aspects of his game, such as pass accuracy.

Against Missouri State, Lock basically looked the part which a quarterback in his third year should. The Tigers’ defense was mostly atrocious, but Lock did his part and led Mizzou to a 29-point win over Missouri State.

Against the Bears, Lock completed 47 of 94 pass attempts for 521 yards, 7 touchdowns, and an interception. He had a 61.8% completion percentage and a 252. 5 quarterback rating. These are, of course, inflated statistics against an FCS opponent.

For comparison sake, on completion percentage alone, Lock achieved a 60% rating or better against four teams – Eastern Michigan (64.9), Georgia (60.5), Delaware State (72.2) and Arkansas (61.5) – in 2016.

Against Georgia, the Tigers lost by one point, and against Arkansas, Missouri rallied from a significant deficit to steal the win from the Razorbacks.

Three of those games were wins. The Tigers’ fourth win was over Vanderbilt, in which Lock achieved a 59.5% completion percentage.

So, what did former NFL quarterback Trent Dilfer have to say about Lock? “Lock has top 10 arm talent of CFB QBs I’ve studied.”

I’d be remiss if anyone ever doubted Lock’s talents as a quarterback. He’s put them on full display against non-FBS opponents. It’s his decision making that gets him in trouble against higher-skilled defenses.

Here’s something we’ve already heard 1,000 times: Lock makes his worst decisions against


FBS opponents. Lock’s “telegraphed” passes get the Tigers into more trouble against FBS opponents, because unlike FCS opponents, the Tigers usually can’t recover from those mistakes.

Beyond Lock’s bad judgement and consistently poor reads, receivers still have to do their part by catching passes and securing the ball, especially in the endzone. Seeing a receiver get stripped of the ball in the endzone would become any other team’s rallying point: Play to the whistle.

Next: SEC releases 2018 football schedule

We can all agree that play calling has done very little to aid in the Tigers’ recovery, and Odom’s defensive play calling is weak, but if Lock could work on the mental aspect of his game, then Missouri could get something positive going on offense, at least.