BYU’s Brady Christensen Putting Together Season That Compares To Penei Sewell

Dec 10, 2020, 10:46 AM | Updated: Dec 30, 2020, 2:09 pm
Brady Christensen - BYU Football...
BYU offensive tackle Brady Christensen has put together an impressive 2020 season. (BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey)
(BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey)

PROVO, Utah – BYU junior Brady Christensen might be the most underappreciated player in college football. The star left tackle for the Cougars is putting together a 2020 season that rivals one of college football’s best offensive lineman ever.

Christensen is closing in on the best Pro Football Focus grade ever set by Oregon’s Penei Sewell in 2019.

Sewell, a former Desert Hills star in St. George, set the PFF record in 2019 with a 95.8 grade. Christensen is on pace to beat Sewell’s record-setting mark with a 97.0 grade this season.

How Pro Football Focus determines their grades is based on “contribution to production” on a given play.

Here’s how PFF describes its grading scale.

Each player is given a grade of -2 to +2 in 0.5 increments on a given play with 0 generally being the average or “expected” grade. There are a few exceptions as each position group has different rules, but those are the basics. The zero grade is important as most plays feature many players doing their job at a reasonable, or expected, level, so not every player on every play needs to earn a positive or a negative.

Brady Christensen by advanced metrics is performing better than Penei Sewell

Christensen ranking above Penei Sewell is notable because Sewell is viewed as a top-five pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Sewell opted out of this season with the Ducks to prepare for the Draft. Christensen has a decision ahead of him on whether he will forego his senior year to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft after the season.

Last season, Sewell’s play garnered a little bit of Heisman buzz from college football’s national media. Sewell was a unanimous first-team All-American and recipient of the Outland Trophy. Christensen wasn’t named a semifinalist for the Outland despite his dominance in 2020 in both passing and run blocking.

It might be time for national pundits to start recognizing the talent of Christensen, who’s putting together a record-setting season as the foundation of BYU’s high-powered offense.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m., KSL Newsradio). Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper and the KSL Sports app.

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