LSU Football: Comparing Anthony Jennings to Zach Mettenberger

Jake MartinCorrespondent IIIMay 2, 2013

COLLEGE STATION, TX - OCTOBER 20:  Zach Mettenberger #8 of the LSU Tigers throws against the Texas A&M Aggies at Kyle Field on October 20, 2012 in College Station, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

After watching LSU's spring game, it's mostly agreed that Anthony Jennings is the quarterback of the future for the Tigers.

Is the future sooner rather than later? Do we have another quarterback controversy on the horizon in the bayou?

If it's anything like Jarrett Lee and Jordan Jefferson, I speak for all LSU fans when I say, "God, let's hope not." As promising as Jennings looks, Zach Mettenberger is LSU's quarterback for 2013. Deal with it.

That, however, doesn't mean that his successor in 2014 isn't better than him in certain areas.


Arm Strength and Accuracy 

An area that Mettenberger holds a strong advantage over Jennings in is his arm strength. In fact, he holds this advantage over most quarterbacks in the SEC.

Distance has never been a problem for Mettenberger. Actually, I take that back. Mettenberger has done his fair share of overthrowing at LSU. What Mettenberger needs to improve upon is controlling his deep balls, but airing it out with a strong arm serves no problem for him.

Now, the accuracy department is a totally different topic. Mettenberger showed flashes last season that gave Tiger fans belief that he could be a top quarterback in this conference. But then he has performances such as the Arkansas and Texas A&M games. InconsistencyIt's a pain to watch, isn't it?

Let's look at last season with a glass-half-full approach, though. Mettenberger did show that he is capable of putting the ball where it needs to be, as he completed 24 of 35 passes against Alabama. You know, the best defense in the nation last year.

For that flash of brilliance, and because we all know he has one of the strongest arms in the SEC, Mettenberger gets the edge in this department.



For you Jennings fans out there, don't worry—he's about to make up some ground on Mettenberger. In fact, he's going to make up that ground in a hurry.

While Mettenberger stands flat-footed in the pocket, Jennings scrambles around and makes big plays with his feetat least that's what he did in high school. He averaged over five yards per carry, and he was evasive in the spring game.

That elusiveness was visible in the spring game, as Jennings maneuvered his way around the pocket to create windows and running lanes.

This may be Jennings' greatest strength, while mobility is certainly Mettenberger's biggest weakness. Watching Mettenberger hold the football for longer than three seconds in the backfield makes fans uneasy because they know the inevitable is about to take place.

If he holds the ball for that long, his chances of getting sacked are about as great as a Christmas tree getting cut down with a man standing in front with a chainsaw in hand. Timber!


Intangibles and Experience 

Mobility isn't the only thing Mettenberger needs to work on. He has to improve his pocket presence so he can know when to get rid of the football before the rush gets to him.

That falls under the intangibles category, and quite frankly, that leaves the door open for Jennings to hold another advantage over Mettenberger.

Not so fast, my friend. With one year of experience under Mettenberger's belt, his intangibles should improve a little bit. And honestly, that's what separates him from Jennings right now.

He has more experience against elite-level competition, and though he's struggled, he's also played exceptionally well against the likes of Alabama and Mississippi State.

Jennings' future at LSU could be brighter than Mettenberger's, but as of now, Mettenberger is best fit to lead this team to victory in 2013. Will the Tigers reign supreme in 2013? The results mostly fall on Mettenberger's shoulders.