AJ McCarron: 6'4", 214 lbs., senior, Mobile, AL
Nick Marshall: 6'1", 210 lbs., junior, Pineview, GA
McCarron: 190-277 passing, 2399 yards, 23 TDs, 5 INTs, 165.1 QB rating; 20 rushes, 5 yards, 0 TDs
Marshall: 108-185 passing, 1530 yards, 9 TDs, 5 INTs, 138.5 QB rating; 123 rushes, 823 yards, 9 TDs
Best Performance of the Year
McCarron: 20-29, 334 yards, 4 TDs, 0 INT at Texas A&M
Marshall: 11-23, 236 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INT; 20 rushes, 100 yards, 2 TDs vs. Texas A&M
So What We're Saying Is
Texas A&M's defense is horrible.
McCarron: The term "game manager" is often used to describe a conservative, weak-armed QB, but the fact is McCarron has been productive against even the best defenses he's faced in his career. Remember Ken Dorsey? How he was phenomenal at Miami but an afterthought in the NFL? McCarron has a much higher pro ceiling. Probably not a first round pick but someone you want to have on the roster and try to develop, certainly. And hey, Alabama hasn't leaned on McCarron to throw 40 times a game, but with that ground game, would you with any QB?
Marshall: Every offense needs a quarterback who's well-suited to the task, and Marshall is most certainly that. He's an adequate passer for what Auburn asks him to do, and if that sounds like faint praise please recall that Tommie Frazier and Jamelle Holieway were adequate passers for what Nebraska and Oklahoma (respectively) asked them to do and they've both got rings to show for it. Marshall's very strong in the read option game, but it's his playmaking ability scrambling from the pocket that sets him apart from most QBs.