Reaction: Boyd Says He's Nation's Best QB
By Eric Russell
Tajh Boyd was on ESPN Radio's SVP and Russillo show Tuesday afternoon and the Clemson quarterback said something many Clemson fans may be thinking heading into the this college football season. He thinks he's the best quarterback in college football.
When asked if he believed he was the best signal caller in college football Boyd went with the predictable response.
"Personally, I think so," Boyd said during the phone interview. "I feel like I bring a lot to the table as far as throwing the ball, being able to running the ball."
Before everybody overreacts and jumps to absurd conclusions about the validity of the statements, it would be fair to point out that Boyd may be right in his evaluation of his skills at quarterback. When it comes to passing the ball he ranks with the likes of last season's Heisman winner Johnny Manziel, Alabama star A.J. McCarron and other top quarterbacks like Aaron Murray and Teddy Bridgewater. Boyd completed 67 percent of his passes last season, the same as McCarron and Manziel. He threw for more yards than any of the aforementioned quarterbacks with 3,896 yards. Boyd also tied Murray for most touchdowns, tossing 36 in the 2012 season.
Not to mention Boyd ran for 514 yards and 10 touchdowns. However, Boyd also said in the radio interview that he feels he's a passer at heart.
"I really consider myself more of a passer than a runner. I don't really like the stigma of being labeled as a dual-threat quarterback," Boyd said. "I feel like I'm more of a guy that can make things happen with my feet, but essentially I like to to sit back there and throw it around."
Boyd's passing game has evolved during his time as a Clemson starter. Before last season he said he wanted to improve his accuracy and consistency, and he did. As a junior he improved his completion percentage by eight percent.
The only thing Boyd has lacked is the hype factor, as evidenced by him being snubbed in most of last year's All-American team voting. Collin Klein even managed to find his way onto the AP and Sports Illustrated second team and Boyd was relegated to honorable mention honors. Not to say that Klein didn't have a big year for Kansas State, but his season wasn't on par with Boyd's campaign statistically.
In addition, Phil Steele omitted Boyd from his preseason All-American list, choosing Manziel, Braxton Miller, McCarron and Bridgewater instead to fill out his four teams. Oversights seems to be a theme for both Boyd and the Tigers, which he said have been hampered by the perception of them not winning signature games. Winning more of those signature games would go a long way in helping others around the nation take notice of Boyd as a top-notch quarterback. His first chance will come in the season opener against Murray and Georgia.
For now the only measure to go off is past performance, and based on what he's shown in the big moments last season, Boyd's lofty opinion of himself is spot on. Not too many college quarterbacks could make such bold declarations on national radio and be correct, but Boyd is certainly one of the few.