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Heisman Watch: Week 2

A weekly look at the favorites, risers, fallers, and the moments that surround college football’s most hallowed award

Texas A&M v Clemson Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Each week at STS I’ll be bringing you a Heisman update. Clemson has two stars that will contend for the award and hopefully bring the trophy to the foothills for the first time. Odds from DraftKings will be updated weekly.

The Favorites

Trevor Lawrence

(Current Odds 3.5-1, Preseason Odds 2.25-1)

Last Week: 24-35, 268 yds, 1 td, 1 int, 1 td rushing in 24-10 win vs. Texas A&M

Year to Date: 64% comp, 436 yds, 2 td, 3 int, 7 car, 13 yds, 2 td rushing

Trevor Lawrence remains your Heisman favorite despite lackluster passing numbers through two games. Why is he still #1? Because he has led the best team in the nation past the toughest opponent on their schedule and can put up gaudy numbers the rest of the way. The biggest hurdle between him and New York will be putting up numbers while only playing 3 quarters per game.

Tua Tagovailoa

(Current Odds 3.5-1, Preseason Odds 2.5-1)

Last Week: 16-24, 227 yds, 3 td, 2 car, 33 yds 1 td rushing in 62-10 win vs. New Mexico St.

Year to Date: 76% comp, 563 yds, 7 td, 0 int, 7 car, 48 yds, 1 td rushing

Tua has started 2019 much like he did 2018 - putting up jaw dropping numbers against a lackluster schedule. Expect him to be your frontrunner by the end of September with games coming against UofSC, Southern Miss, and Ole Miss. The question is, how will he handle LSU, Mississippi State, Auburn, and presumably Georgia down the stretch?

Joe Burrow

(Current Odds 8-1, Preseason Odds 80-1)

Last Week: 31-39, 471 yds, 4 TD, 1 Int in 45-38 win vs. Texas

Year to Date: 82% comp, 749 yds, 9 td, 1 int, 10 car, 10 yds, 0 td rushing

Jeuax Burreuax burst onto the Heisman scene last week following an incredible out-of-conference performance against #9 Texas. If you want to win a Heisman you’ve got to perform your best when the lights are brightest. Burrow led LSU on three 4th quarter scoring drives in a tough road environment. He deserves the kudos, and Heisman bump, he received this week. Is LSU’s offense a flash in the pan or here to stay? Can the Tigers beat Alabama on the road in November? Regardless, Burrow has the voter’s attention.

Jalen Hurts

(Current Odds 9-1, Preseason Odds 12-1)

Last Week: 14-18, 259 yds, 3 td, 8 car, 47 yds in 70-14 win vs. South Dakota

Year to Date: 83% comp, 591 yds, 6 td, 1 int, 24 car, 223 yds, 3 td rushing

Hurts went scorched earth against lowly South Dakota in just over two quarters of action this past weekend and remains firmly in the Heisman race. His combination of elite passing numbers and rushing yardage will make him an easy choice to get to New York. Will voters be willing to vote for an Oklahoma QB three straight years? Can we get Lincoln Riley a Heisman? Hurts will have to play near-perfect football this season to convince voters he’s more than a system QB.

Justin Fields

(Current Odds 10-1, Preseason Odds 9-1)

Last Week: 20-25, 224 yds, 2 TD, 9 car, 42 yds, 2 tds rushing in 42-0 win over Cincinnati

Year to Date: 76% comp, 458 yds, 6 td, 0 int, 21 car, 103 yds, 3 td rushing

The Justin Fields hype train hasn’t ratcheted up yet but, rest assured, the train will soon be leaving the station. Fields, much like Hurts, has put up eye popping numbers early in the season against easy opponents. His combination of passing and rushing will keep him in the race as long as he keeps winning - along with Ohio State’s top notch media team. If he can keep Ohio State from Buckeye-ing a loss against a middling B16 team in October he will have a serious shot to claim the trophy during blue blood matchups vs. Penn State and Michigan to finish the season.

Hanging Around

Jonathan Taylor

(Current Odds 16-1, Preseason Odds 16-1)

Last Week: 19 car, 102 yds, 3 tds rushing, 3 rec, 17 yds, 1 td receiving in 61-0 win vs. Central Michigan

Year to Date: 35 car, 237 yds, 6.8 avg, 5 td, 5 rec, 65 yds, 3 td receiving

Taylor had another phenomenal week against Central Michigan and has shown the ability to catch and run the ball in early 2019. It is telling that his Heisman odds haven’t moved from their preseason +1600 despite his 8 touchdowns in two games. The Badgers are on bye this week but will face Michigan the following week in a game that could stoke Taylor’s candidacy.


Travis Etienne

(Current Odds 22-1, Preseason Odds 14-1)

Last Week: 16 carries, 53 yds, 0 tds, 4 rec, 52 yds in 24-10 win vs. Texas A&M

Year to Date: 28 car, 258 yds, 9.2 avg, 3 td, 5 rec, 55 yds, 0 td receiving

Etienne’s odds took a hit following a less-than-stellar game in primetime against Texas A&M. A running back’s road to the Heisman is nearly impossible without memorable moments during their biggest games. He could bounce back into the race with some incredible games during the ACC schedule. A ridiculous yard per carry average and 20+ touchdowns would be necessary for ETN to make a case for the trophy.

D’Andre Swift

(Current Odds 22-1, Preseason Odds 14-1)

Last Week: 6 car, 67 yds, 2 tds rushing, 1 rec, 9 yds, 1 td receiving in 63-17 win vs. Murray St

Year to Date: 22 car, 216 yds, 9.8 avg, 2 td, 1 rec, 9 yds, 0 td receiving

Swift’s season has gone as expected to date with easy wins and great stats against the likes of Murray State and Vanderbilt. His 9.8 ypc average puts him in elite company early and could remaining astoundingly high while running behind Georgia’s acclaimed offensive line vs. a weak SEC East. Look for him to continuing padding stats this week against Arkansas State.

Maybe Next Year

Adrian Martinez

(Current Odds 40-1, Preseason Odds 20-1)

Last Week: 16-26, 290 yds, 2 td, 1 int, 19 car, 66 yds, 2 td rushing in 34-31 loss to Colorado

Year to Date: 60% comp, 468 yds, 2 td, 2 int, 32 car, 72 yds, 2 td rushing

Everyone’s preseason darkhorse candidate has exited the race following a second half collapse against Colorado. Martinez could put up great numbers the rest of the year but the Cornhuskers don’t appear to have a talented enough team to propel any player to Heisman status.

Heisman Moment of the Week

LSU leads Texas on the road 37-31 with 2:38 remaining in the 4th quarter. Joe Burrow - facing pressure from a 7 man rush - steps up in the pocket to hit Justin Jefferson in stride for a game-sealing 61-yd touchdown pass. Horns down everywhere.

He Won’t Win it, but...

Rondale Moore deserves a few moments of your attention. The best wide receiver in football not named Jerry Jeudy posted 13 catches, 220 yards, and a touchdown in route to a 42-24 win over Vanderbilt. Moore’s electrifying playmaking ability is what makes Purdue an upset special pick every week and led to the memorable Ohio State upset in October of last year. Through two games this year Moore has 24 receptions for 344 yards and 2 touchdowns. If you get a chance to watch Purdue’s offense wreak havoc on the top tier of the B16 this year, do.

TenDay’s Ballot After Week 2

1) Joe Burrow

2) Jalen Hurts

3) Tua Tagovailoa

4) Trevor Lawrence

5) Elijah Sindelar

Bonus Best Bet: Justin Fields 10/1