Utah, BYU Well Represented In Best CFB Players From 2019 Ranking
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Pro Football Focus included a list of local players in their recent ranking of the 101 best college football players from 2019.
Five University of Utah players were selected, headlined by Zack Moss at number 14 while BYU added two local players.
The list was constructed based on PFF’s play-by-play grades, however, some leeway was granted to individual players based on “factors such as positional value, workload as a percentage of respective teams snaps and level of competition on a game by game basis.”
As mentioned above, Zack Moss was the highest-ranked player from the state of Utah to be listed, coming in at number 14.
Moss forced 87 missed tackles on his 234 carries in 2019 generating 1,412 yards and 1,042 yards after contact. The premiere back averaged 4.5 yards per carry in 2019 which was the second-best average for running backs that carried the football at least 200 times.
Tyler Huntley joined the party at number 50 after a spectacular senior season that put both himself and the Utes back in the spotlight.
Huntley finished 2019 with a 73.1 percent completion percentage, good enough for second in the country only behind Heisman and National Championship winning quarterback, Joe Burrow.
Julian Blackmon was listed at number 52 as the one time cornerback turned safety lit up the skies in 2019 with four interceptions and five pass breakups before eventually suffering a season-ending knee injury during the first half of the Pac-12 Championship game.
As dominant as Blackmon was in coverage, he was also very savvy on the ground as he missed just 7 of his 59 tackle attempts in 2019.
Despite being potentially the best shut down cornerback in all of the west, former Ute Jaylon Johnson dropped to number 85.
While Johnson did not see the football come his way all that often, when the ball did make its way to his side of the field he only allowed a 44 percent completion percentage. As good as he was deflecting passes, Johnson just missed 2 of his 39 solo tackle attempts.
The first BYU player joins the long list of players from the state of Utah at number 86. The physical safety had a breakout season for the Cougars finishing 2019 with 36 solo tackles, 1 interception, and 4 pass breakups.
Lee was a dominant figure in the BYU secondary and was frequently relied upon to disguise defensive packages making life nearly impossible for opposing offenses to operate smoothly.
Just up the road in Salt Lake City lived another safety, Terrell Burgess who was listed at number 88 according to PFF.
Burgess was another safety that had a breakout year in 2019, finishing the season with one interception and four pass breakups while not allowing a touchdown all year on his side of the coverage. Despite blitzing just 46 times, Burgess was able to pressure opposing quarterbacks on 15 separate occasions.
Brady Christensen was the final member from the state of Utah to make the PFF list, coming in at number 95.
Christensen spent 542 snaps in pass protection during the 2019 season and just gave up 13 total pressures and one combined sack. Rather efficient numbers if you ask PFF. Over the final six-game stretch he closed the season out with elite pass-blocking grades while giving up just three quarterback pressures over that time.
Christensen set the tone for a bigger and stronger 2020.