Matt Barkley vs Ryan Tannehill – game tape

Some people believe Ryan Tannehill could be better than Matt Barkley. I strongly disagree with that suggestion. Very strongly. Below you’ll find six videos – the first three are all of Barkley’s throws against Minnesota, Arizona State and Arizona. The second three feature Tannehill’s throws against SMU, Oklahoma State and Arkansas.

I appreciate the significant difference in competition level and ideally we’d be able to compare both quarterbacks against the same opponents. We also have to take into account these are two of Barkley’s best performances at USC, including a record setting display against Arizona. I still believe there’s enough evidence here to prove my point – on every level but running ability, Barkley comes out on top. His ability to jump through reads, his grasp of play action, his accuracy on short, intermediate and deep routes and his technique/mechanics are all better in my view.

Despite certain claims that this will be a quarterback class for the ages, there really are only two players I can offer first round grades at the moment – Andrew Luck and Barkley. I have Tannehill in the second tier group of quarterbacks, alongside Austin Davis at Southern Miss and Landry Jones at Oklahoma.

Videos supplied by JMPasq



  1. Jmpasq

    i have Barkley against ASU as well

    • Rob

      Updated and included, alongside Tannehill vs SMU. John’s work excellent as usual.

  2. Colin

    I’m not terribly impressed by Barkley’s footwork. I think he tends to throw off his back foot too much. Other than that he looks great.

  3. diehard82

    Rob, I don’t find myself dissagreeing with you very often, but I just watched the Barkley ASU game and if that’s one of his best performances, I’m very dissappointed. I found myself drawn to Woods who is sensational and helped make some of Barkley’s throws look better than they were. Also to ASU linebacker Vontaze Burfict. I kept skipping back to re-watch certain plays and while most of the time Barkley had plenty of time in the pocket, his decision making was suspect, footwork inconsistent and his accuracy was lacking. Even though Woods and company got separation on virtually every play, Barkley routinely missed them with over-throws, not putting enough air under the throw, uncatchable balls thrown out of bounds, etc… Several completions were simply due to wide receivers making a great catch of a bad throw. Reminded me a lot of watching Jake Locker, except Barkley throws a prettier ball with good spin and spiral most of the time, and his receiving corps and O-line are better than Locker’s supporting cast. Now, I haven’t watched a lot of USC, so please tell me I picked his “bad” game.

    • Matt

      ASU was his worst tape. Rob meant Arizona and Minnesota were two of his better tapes.

    • Rob

      When I referred to Arizona, I was referring to the Wildcats and not Arizona State.

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