Kellen Mond took several steps forward from 2017 to 2018; what can we expect from the Texas A&M football quarterback in 2019?
When Jimbo Fisher took over for Texas A&M football it was like wiping the slate clean and starting over for most players on the offensive side of the ball, especially for those who had spent years under Kevin Sumlin running his air raid offense. Fisher wasn’t going to mess with all that. He had a system that had won him a national championship and was going to implement his concepts.
It forced the quarterbacks on the roster to undergo yet another competition for the starting job. Nick Starkel must have figured the job was his until proven otherwise. He beat out Kellen Mond for the starting spot under Sumlin in 2017 and only lost it when he got hurt in the opener against UCLA. He eventually earned it back and finished the season strong, throwing for 499 yards and four touchdowns in the Belk Bowl.
However, it was Mond, who showed drastic improvement and clearly more upside in Fisher’s first offseason, taking the job from Starkel. He wouldn’t relinquish it for all of 2018 and the team finished 9-4 and second place in the SEC West. Just look at the statistical improvements Mond made from year one to year two.
- Completion percentage: 51.5 to 57.3
- Adjusted yards per attempt: 5.6 to 7.7
- Touchdown/ Interception ratio: 1.33 to 2.66
- Quarterback rating: 108.8 to 135.0
Even beyond the stats, the eye test difference was remarkable when watching Mond in 2018. He was much more patient, more willing to make multiple reads and work through his progressions, and much more accurate.
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So, this begs the question, what can we expect from Mond in year two under Fisher? Here are some stats of Jimbo’s quarterbacks at Florida State who started at least two years. These are second year as full time starter stats.
- Christian Ponder: 68.8 percent completions, 8.1 adjusted yards per attempt, 14 touchdowns, seven interceptions, 147.7 quarterback rating
- E.J. Manuel: 68 percent completions, 8.8 adjusted yards per attempt, 23 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, 156.1 quarterback rating
- Jameis Winston: 65.3 percent completions, 7.7 adjusted yards per attempt, 25 touchdowns, 18 interceptions, 145.5 quarterback rating.
Multiple things to note here. First, each one of these players had better stats than Mond even in their first years as starters. Second, it’s interesting to note Winston had remarkable fall off from his Heisman campaign in his first year, though still put up good numbers, and Manuel and Ponder each got better from year one to year two.
It’s reasonable to expect a quarterback guru like Fisher to continue Mond’s progression and to see much improvement in year two. Mond threw the ball 415 times last season, if you take that, plus a not unrealistic 62 percent completions with 8.3 adjusted yards per attempt, Mond’s stat line would look something like this:
- 3,403 yards, 25 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, 146.6 quarterback rating
Mond has already been recognized by multiple outlets as one of the better quarterbacks in the country for the 2019 season. Many who analyze the game are expecting big things from him in year two. Would the above stat line be enough improvement in your eyes to be recognized as one of the best?