In Forth Worth, Texas this past Saturday, the TCU Horned Frogs, who were coming off a National Championship appearance, and the new-look Colorado Buffalo traded punches the entire game. One team showed finesse and athletic ability in its success, the other was more rigid and power-driven in their approach.
Both had their success at times, but one specific player announced himself to the world after dominating two years prior.
At this point in college football, anyone who shares the same blood as Deion Sanders is going to have a target on their back. Rational or not, that is just the reality of the college football landscape. On Saturday, the new-look Colorado Buffalo had plays made by both Shilo Sanders at cornerback and Shedeur Sanders at quarterback. In the case of the quarterback named Sanders, he showed that he was more than just someone who could pick apart a SWAC defense.
Shedeur Sanders Ripped Apart TCU
While Caleb Williams stole the show on Saturday with his acrobatics, Sanders did it with his pinpoint passing display. While his arm strength can impress at times, he relied more heavily on his mobility to avoid pressure in the pocket before putting the ball where the receiver could make a play.
In the process of demonstrating an accurate arm, he did enough to pass for a school-record 510 yards while going 38 for 47 on his passing attempts. While a passing chart is unavailable, from watching the game twice over, Sanders took chances and didn’t take the easy way out with his passing. While he did get some help from some massive run-after-the-catch plays from running back Dylan Edwards, the bulk of his passing came via the air.
Last year TCU’s passing defense only allowed 252 passing yards on average per game, Sanders doubled that mark. The current team has some NFL talent led by cornerback Josh Newton but the Colorado receivers couldn’t be contained and when they did, Sanders threw them open. That ability to throw receivers open, or only where they can make a play on the ball, is something NFL teams look for.
What Does His NFL Potential Look Like?
The 2024 NFL Draft quarterback group is about as loaded as it has ever been. A large part of that is the NIL era keeps quarterbacks around longer such as Michael Penix Jr., Grayson McCall, and Jordan Travis. Pair that with new, younger talent becoming draft-eligible such as Caleb Williams, Quinn Ewers, and Drake Maye and it becomes a crowded dance floor.
In the situation of Shedeur Sanders, he is finally playing on a national stage after dominating the FCS and leading Jackson State to two historic seasons.
The knock on Sanders was the competition he faced wasn’t up to par, but that didn’t stop analysts from seeing what Steve McNair, Joe Flacco, and Carson Wentz could be at the time. Unlike those other three, Sanders used and had the benefit of the transfer portal and now, along with his dad, has national attention.
While that does come with more scrutiny, it also comes with more praise as well. After one game the nation is buzzing, and eventually so will scouts. Shedeur Sanders has the arm talent, decision-making, and NFL bloodlines that teams and media love to elevate. What separates Sanders from his father is he is doing it while being a lot more quiet.
Make no mistake about it though, if Shedeur Sanders can impress folks against the stiff defenses in the Pac-12, he will be as loud as his dad was when he entered the league in the historic 1989 NFL Draft class.