Landry Jones: Oklahoma Needs Him Consistent in 2010

Luke McConnellCorrespondent IJanuary 26, 2010

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 05:  Quarterback Landry Jones #12 of the Oklahoma Sooners at Cowboys Stadium on September 5, 2009 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

When Sam Bradford went down against BYU in the 2009 season opener, redshirt freshman Landry Jones was thrown right into the thick of the college football world.  

Jones certainly wasn't expecting to be playing this season except maybe in mop up rolls after the Sooners rolled over an opponent on the strength of an offense that averaged 50 points a game in 2008.  

However, once Bradford was down, Jones was the man. And he made the most of it. Sometimes.  

Although Jones was far from the only problem for the Sooners this year, he certainly didn't help the cause in certain games by being woefully inconsistent throughout the season.

Jones' stats were very good. He threw for 3,198 yards with 27 touchdowns. However, he also threw 14 interceptions, one of which cost the Sooners the game against Texas; another five were against Nebraska that prevented Oklahoma from overcoming a single touchdown deficit and lead to the lowest offensive output of the Bob Stoops era.  

Jones also had games where he lit up the stat sheet, throwing for a school record six touchdowns against Tulsa and five against Texas A&M. Statistically, Jones' best game was against Kansas State when he went 26-37 for 294 yards and four touchdowns.  

Oklahoma needs that Landry Jones to show up for every game in 2010.  

Coming into spring practice, the starting job will be Jones' to lose, but if he falters or continues to show inconsistency, redshirt freshman Drew Allen or highly touted true freshman Blake Bell could step up and claim the starting job.

There are two things that Jones needs to do to improve as a quarterback.  

First, he needs to work on his accuracy. Jones completed 58.1 percent of his passes in 2009 but that number definitely needs to be higher for the Sooners to be more effective on offense. Some of the incompletions were drops, but many were just throws that were off the mark. Picking up the completion percentage will do a lot for him.

Second, Jones needs to work on checking off his options. Many times, Jones made up his mind on who he was throwing to as the play came in. This was the reason for many of his interceptions. A good quarterback can go through his options and choose the best one. Jones needs to work on that in the spring and summer so that he can become a better passer.

Oklahoma survived a year full of injuries and inconsistency with a winning record and big bowl victory. The Sooners will be looking to return to the main stage in 2010 and to do that, Landry Jones will need to be a consistent quarterback. If he can, the Sooners will be back in the national spotlight very soon.