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OSU's C.J. Stroud Dazzles Fans with 'Special' Throws, No. 1 Pick Potential vs. ND

Adam WellsSeptember 4, 2022

Ben Jackson/Getty Images

Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud overcame a rough start to finish strong in Saturday's 21-10 victory over Notre Dame in a season-opening matchup between two Top 5 teams.

Trailing 10-7 late in the third quarter, Stroud led the Buckeyes on long touchdown drives on back-to-back possessions to grab the victory. The junior star was particularly effective when he was moving out of the pocket to create extra time for his receivers to get open.

Darius Butler @DariusJButler

CJ Stroud is making some SPECIAL throws on the run tonight.

Thad Brown @thadbrown7

This second half has been a clinic as to why CJ Stroud might be the #1 overall pick next spring. Some unstoppable, Josh Allen-esque scramble, roll and throw plays.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

C.J. Stroud escapes the pressure and Emeka Egbuka makes a RIDICULOUS catch ๐Ÿ˜จ<br><br>(via <a href="https://twitter.com/BigTenNetwork?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@BigTenNetwork</a>)<a href="https://t.co/kV9KReKuQ5">pic.twitter.com/kV9KReKuQ5</a>

Ohio State's first of those two touchdowns came at the end of a 10-play, 70-yard drive. Stroud was able to stay in the pocket on the final play, a 24-yard strike to Xavier Johnson on 3rd-and-11.

ESPN @espn

THIS GAME ๐Ÿ”ฅ <br><br>Ohio State takes the lead after this TD โฌ‡๏ธ <a href="https://t.co/w1KMdFRxik">pic.twitter.com/w1KMdFRxik</a>

After the defense forced Notre Dame to punt, Stroud and the offense went back to work with a game-clinching 95-yard touchdown drive that took more than seven minutes off the clock.

Even though most of the drive was engineered by chunk plays on the ground, Stroud went 4-of-4 for 36 yards through the air. He completed a 12-yard pass to Miyan Williams on 3rd-and-3 to keep the drive alive.

The Buckeyes will need to clean up a lot of things about their offense going forward, but having Stroud's elusiveness and arm talent at quarterback allows them to get away with many mistakes.

Benjamin Solak @BenjaminSolak

CJ Stroud out of the pocket has been something else tonight

Pat Forde @ByPatForde

Stroud hasn't been great, but he's made a couple huge throws on the run and gotten great catches on those plays.

Patrick โ€œDiddyโ€ Robertson @Made_Man_5

CJ Stroud arm talent is CRAZY!

Jac Collinsworth @JacCollinsworth

Stroud is a hell of a thrower on the run. His best throws are cruising at full speed

Mekka Don @MekkaDonMusic

CJ Stroud hasnโ€™t played his best game overall but heโ€™s been CLUTCH on 3rd down. He stayed poised and made unbelievable throws outside of the pocket. Love to see it .

Chase Brown @chaseabrown__

C.J. Stroud has shown some impressive elusiveness when receivers haven't been open initially. He looks a lot more mobile than a season ago.

Stroud's final stat line was fine, as he went 24-of-34 for 223 yards (124 in the second half) and two touchdowns. But he stepped up huge on the money drives that Ohio State needed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat against a quality opponent.

The Buckeyes could have one of the most complete teams in the nation if Stroud and the passing game get on track in the coming weeks. The defense held Notre Dame's offense to 253 yards. TreVeyon Henderson and Miyan Williams combined for 175 rushing yards on 29 carries.

Things will get easier for Ohio State over the next two weeks with home games against Arkansas State (Sept. 10) and Toledo (Sept. 17). Its next major test will likely come on Sept. 24 against No. 18 Wisconsin at the Horseshoe.

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