Tuesday, November 19, 2013

NIU’s Lynch looks like prototypical A11FL quarterback


The mind’s eye can be very powerful.

And ever since the A11 Football League has announced a spring 2015 kickoff for its first full season after a slate of showcase games in the spring of 2014, my mind’s eye has gone to which professional and college football players would be good fits in the new pro football league – especially at quarterback.

One player whose play and statistics keep standing out is Northern Illinois redshirt senior quarterback Jordan Lynch. An A11FL quarterback needs to be able to produce at a high level as a runner, a passer and a decision-maker – and Lynch certainly fits that bill.

It’s one thing to show Lynch’s career statistics, because they are gaudy (3,696 yards and 39 touchdowns rushing, and 5,533 yards, 48 touchdowns and 11 interceptions passing), but what sets Lynch apart is two things – consistency and being a winner.

In nearly two seasons as a full-time starter, Lynch has started 24 games. He’s had at least 100 rushing yards in 17 of those games. He’s has at least 200 passing yards in 16 of those games.

Lynch has had at least 300 total yards of offense in 18 of his 24 collegiate starts. His career-high in rushing yards is 316 yards (on 32 carries with three touchdowns) on October 19 against Central Michigan, and his career-high in passing yards is 407 yards (25-for-36, three touchdowns, one interception) on November 14, 2012, against Toledo.

And Lynch has had a 90-yard run and a 73-yard pass in his collegiate career.

In other words, Lynch isn’t a one-trick pony. And not only is Lynch productive, he’s a winner – a 22-2 record as a starter, 10 straight wins to begin 2013 and a berth in the Orange Bowl, something previously unheard of for a Mid-American Conference program.

Unfortunately for Lynch, the same old tired excuses as for why he won’t be a productive professional quarterback crop up – he’s 6-foot and 216 pounds (talk to Drew Brees), he plays in the MAC (talk to Ben Roethlisberger) and he’s too much of a runner (talk to Colin Kaepernick).

Following NIU’s 48-27 home win over Ball State last week, Lynch told the media he thinks his best is yet to come. He very well might be right.

And, in my mind’s eye, that yet-to-come best is running, throwing and winning for the Illinois A11FL team, beginning in the spring of 2015.

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