Texas A&M Football

Johnny Manziel's Updated 2013 Heisman Outlook After Win over Mississippi State

COLLEGE STATION, TX - NOVEMBER 09:  Johnny Manziel #2 of the Texas A&M Aggies celebrates a touchdown pass in the third quarter during the game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs at Kyle Field on November 9, 2013 in College Station, Texas.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images
Tyler BrookeSenior Analyst IINovember 10, 2013

Johnny Manziel led the Texas A&M Aggies to another big win on Saturday, and now he's making a run for his second consecutive Heisman Trophy.

The Aggies won 51-41 over the Mississippi State Bulldogs, putting up well over 500 total yards of offense.  Manziel was huge, completing 30 of 39 passes for 446 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions.  He also showed off his legs a bit, running for 47 yards.

Although the three interceptions were a problem, the five touchdowns and nearly 500 yards of total offense continue to cement Manziel as a Heisman front-runner.

COLLEGE STATION, TX - NOVEMBER 09:  Johnny Manziel #2 of the Texas A&M Aggies drops back to pass in the first half during the game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs at Kyle Field on November 9, 2013 in College Station, Texas.  (Photo by Scott Hallera
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Marcus Mariota has fallen out of the race for the Heisman with Oregon's loss to Stanford, at least for now.  As it stands, it's probably a race between Manziel and Florida State's Jameis Winston.

When looking at the passing numbers between the two players, Manziel has a pretty sizable advantage now.  He's thrown at least four touchdowns in four consecutive games and is simply lighting up the scoreboard by himself.  

Manziel vs. Winston Passing Stats
PlayerCompAttComp %YardsTDINT
Johnny Manziel23031573.033133111
Jameis Winston16624069.22661267
ESPN.com

The only advantage Winston has statistically is with turnovers.   He's thrown just seven interceptions this year compared to Manziel's 11, although Johnny Football makes up for it with the huge numbers everywhere else.

As a passer, Manziel has improved from last season. He's completed a higher percentage of passes, and although he's thrown more interceptions, he's done a better job going through his reads and finding the open man.

On the ground, Manziel is having no problem beating out Winston.  Winston isn't a quarterback who focuses on running, while Manziel is more of a dual-threat player.  With an advantage through the air and on the ground, Manziel is the front-runner statistically.

Manziel vs. Winston Rushing Stats
PlayerAttYdsAvgTD
Johnny Manziel1106115.68
Jameis Winston531573.03
ESPN.com

While the numbers for Manziel are superior, Winston has the advantage in wins.  Manziel and the Aggies have two tough losses to Alabama and Auburn, while Winston and the Seminoles haven't lost yet.

Although wins aren't counted on an individual basis, Florida State is currently undefeated and has been blowing out even the toughest opponents, with Winston leading the way.  He's been a true leader for the Seminoles and hasn't been forced to make as many plays with the rest of his team dominating.

This creates a very interesting situation for the voters.  Both players have made their cases so far this year, but it will be up to the voters to determine if they value wins over numbers.

What makes Manziel such a great Heisman candidate is his ability to make something out of nothing.  He uses his legs to extend plays, doing whatever it takes to make something happen on offense.  It doesn't always turn out well, but it certainly makes him the most exciting player to watch in college football.

Right now, Manziel is certainly in contention for the Heisman Trophy, and his only competition seems to be Winston.  However, if he can keep having huge games like he has recently, his numbers could very well force to voters to select him once again.

 

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