Darron Thomas

Scheming up a Storm

Oregon had something they haven’t had at any time in recent memory this past season; a potent passing game. Since Mark Helfrich has taken over the reigns from Chip Kelly, the Ducks’ passing attack has gotten stronger every season, culminating...

Chip Kelly a Racist?!

In one of his more ridiculous commentaries, one of many delivered over the years, ESPN First Take host Stephen A. Smith seemed to suggest current Philadelphia Eagles head coach and former University of Oregon head coach Chip Kelly is a racist,...

“He might be the next…” Seriously?

Now that National Signing Day is over, the voices will gradually increase in both volume and number throughout every college football program with one of the most overused phrases: “He might be the next (insert name of former great player...

Oregon’s Future QB Situation — How Much Does Experience Matter?

And just like that … Marcus Mariota is out the door and ready to start what promises to be a brilliant career in the NFL. After such a historic season, it is natural to see him take the leap to...

Thanks For the Memories: Tribute to Our Skinny Hawaiian

With the upcoming departure of Marcus Mariota, I’d just like a moment to review and reflect on our beloved Skinny Hawaiian’s astounding career. In the coming days you will likely hear from ESPN how Mariota’s stock has fallen because of...

What Could’ve, Should’ve Been: A Look Back at the 2010 BCS Championship

With Oregon on the verge of what could be the greatest season in the history of the program, I’d like to take you back to the biggest game that the Ducks have ever played in. Let’s go back to that...

Chip Kelly’s No-Huddle: A Growing Staple for NFL Offenses?

A pickup basketball game between the football coaches of the University of New Hampshire and Brown University in the 1990s was the first of many meetings between two future NFL head coaches. Then-New Hampshire running backs coach Chip Kelly and a Brown assistant coach named Bill O’Brien exchanged ideas about X’s and O’s on the first of many occasions. O’Brien was …

Mark Helfrich Assaulting Record Books With Chip Kelly’s Best QB

Entering what is now the second spring of the Mark Helfrich era at Oregon, Chip Kelly’s influence remains visible across all facets of the Oregon football program.  From the up-tempo style of play Kelly initially installed as a coordinator to the commitment to unique and cutting-edge preparation with a focus on continuous daily improvement – as well as maintaining the invaluable coaching continuity — are all lasting hallmarks of his vision.

While Helfrich will inevitably put his own stamp on the program, he will be coaching a roster made up of many of Chip’s recruits for the next few years.  Even so, Helfrich likely served a substantial role in landing these recruits as offensive coordinator – one of which, quarterback Marcus Mariota, might be the very best of that bunch.

Mark Helfrich

Mark Helfrich

With that in mind, let’s compare the most productive quarterbacks of the Chip Kelly era.

Career Passing Yards
475/722 6,342 yards – Marcus Mariota
449/733 5,910 yards – Darron Thomas
444/695 5,129 yards – Dennis Dixon
313/544 3,891 yards – Jeremiah Masoli
168/309 1,660 yards – Brady Leaf
80/152 952 yards – Justin Roper
45/83 580 yards – Bryan Bennett
45/66 483 yards – Nate Costa

Career Rushing Yards
202 carries 1,467 yards – Marcus Mariota
248 carries 1,386 yards – Jeremiah Masoli
258 carries 1,208 yards – Dennis Dixon
132 carries 635 yards – Darron Thomas
67 carries 42 yards – Brady Leaf
62 carries 365 yards – Bryan Bennett
36 carries 139 yards – Nate Costa
32 carries 86 yards – Justin Roper

Total Touchdowns
77 – 63 pass/14 rush – Marcus Mariota
75 – 66 pass/9 rush – Darron Thomas
51 – 28 pass/23 rush – Jeremiah Masoli
50 – 38 pass/12 rush – Dennis Dixon
15 – 9 pass/6 rush – Bryan Bennett
11 – 9 pass/2 rush – Justin Roper
10 – 9 pass/1 rush – Brady Leaf
5 – 2 pass/3 rush – Nate Costa

Total Interceptions
21 – Dennis Dixon
17 – Darron Thomas
11 – Jeremiah Masoli
10 – Marcus Mariota
9 – Brady Leaf
6 – Justin Roper
3 – Bryan Bennett
1 – Nate Costa

Career Wins
24 (appeared in 31 games) – Darron Thomas
23 (appeared in 26 games) – Marcus Mariota
20 (appeared in 24 games) – Jeremiah Masoli
8* (appeared in 40 games) – Dennis Dixon
0** (appeared in 35 games) – Brady Leaf
3 (appeared in 16 games) – Bryan Bennett
2 (appeared in 16 games) – Nate Costa
1 (appeared in 10 games) – Justin Roper

*-Dixon was on the roster or played in parts of 32 total team wins.

**-Leaf often split time or finished games Dixon started. He was 0-2 during games against Oklahoma and at Washington State.

Mariota will likely be collecting more hardware in 2014.

Mariota will likely be collecting more hardware in 2014.

As you can see from the numbers, Mark Helfrich has been afforded the most productive quarterback of the Chip Kelly era by almost every measurable statistic.  Should Mariota be able to continue along this trajectory during his upcoming junior (and likely final) season, his numbers across the board will be exponentially higher than any of his predecessors.  His win total is on track to obliterate the career win numbers for the long line of greats who have played in Eugene.

When you add in his school records already achieved for most touchdowns, and also becoming the first Oregon QB to amass over 4,000 yards in a season at the end of last year, Duck fans in 2014 will suddenly find themselves watching simply the greatest quarterback in school history.  And it won’t even be close.

Top photo by Kevin Cline

 

Darron Thomas Officially Signed by Portland Arena Football Team

/

Former UO standout Darron Thomas is being brought back to the state of Oregon. The new Portland Arena Football team has signed Thomas to a free-agent contact, confirmed by head coach Matthew Sauk.

[tweet_embed id=388403818406240256]

Thomas had an illustrious career for the Ducks. His collegiate debut came in a loss to Boise State at home when the Ducks’ pulled his redshirt mid-game. Then after a redshirt in 2009, Thomas beat out Nate Costa for the starting quarterback job in 2010 guiding the Ducks to a national championship appearance. As a junior, Thomas brought the Ducks’ their first Rose Bowl victory in close to a century but surprisingly declared for the NFL Draft rather than returning for his final year of eligibility.

Thomas bounced around from league to league, never in the NFL, and now appears to have a long-term home in Portland.

Comment below, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @EDN_Sports

1 2 3 7