Tennessee football is 4-0 thanks largely to quarterback Joshua Dobbs. The Volunteers senior has played at the level of Clemson Tigers’ Deshaun Watson.
Since August, we have been ridiculed at All for Tennessee because of a post we did about Joshua Dobbs’s potential to be better than Deshaun Watson.
The Clemson Tigers fan base rolled in and trashed the article from the start, constantly joking about how off-target we were. It spread through the blogosphere like wildfire as a laughingstock article that nobody believed.
And after the first game of the season, it picked up steam again thanks to Dobbs’s struggles.
But mysteriously, the chatter stopped shortly after that. Clemson fans had to worry about their own challenges with Watson. That started with putting away the Auburn Tigers. Of course, Watson struggled against those might Troy Trojans the next week, but he put them away.
And then he began to pick up steam against South Carolina State and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.
Meanwhile, after the Appalachian State game, Dobbs came away with five total touchdowns against the Virginia Tech Hokies, added another three against the Ohio Bobcats, and had the game of the year against the Florida Gators with 300 passing yards and four touchdowns to go with 80 rushing yards and a touchdown.
All of a sudden, through four games, Dobbs has only 70 fewer total yards than Watson. Meanwhile, he has five more total touchdowns. And while Watson has a better QBR, Dobbs has a better Adjusted QBR.
Want to talk schedule strength? Dobbs has faced far and away the statistically toughest defense in the Florida Gators, ranked No. 8 in rush defense and No. 10 in pass defense. None of Clemson’s opponents have reached the Top 10 in either category.
Yet, as we already mentioned, Dobbs torched them for more passing yards, passing touchdowns, rushing yards, and rushing touchdowns than Watson has had in any of those categories against any team he’s played this year.
But we don’t need to stop there. Virginia Tech also is ranked higher in both categories than any team Clemson’s faced so far. And Dobbs had five total touchdowns against them.
So at this point, it’s not so ridiculous to say that Joshua Dobbs is at least on par with Watson, is it? And we also didn’t bring up the massive struggles on the Tennessee offensive line.
Given those facts, you could make a strong case that Dobbs is better.
After all, Tennessee has not had the luxury of playing an FCS school. So no matter how you slice it, through a third of the college football season, Dobbs and Watson are in the same spot.
Yes, Lamar Jackson is light years ahead of both right now in numbers. And Watson has a chance to show what he can do once again on a huge stage.
But as of right now, Watson fans can’t really laugh off the idea of Dobbs being in his league.