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Where do ASU’s Jayden Daniels, UA’s Khalil Tate land in PFF’s QB rankings?

ASU quarterback Jayden Daniels (5) and Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate (14) (Photos by Kevin Abele, Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

ASU quarterback Jayden Daniels is in the upper quarter of NCAA passers, and Arizona’s Khalil Tate is one of the top 10.

That’s according to Pro Football Focus’ rankings of 130 college quarterbacks, which lists Daniels at No. 33 and Tate at No. 8 through five games of the season for both teams.

PFF said Daniels has played better since the opening game of the season, in which he was “very inaccurate” against Kent State.

Since that victory, the team has added three more wins to just one loss, and Pro Football Focus notes his impressive number of “big-time throws” to “turnover-worthy passes.”

After Week 1, Daniels has had five big-time throws, defined by Pro Football Focus as the most difficult and highest-value throws. Factors can include ball location in tight windows or little separation between receiver and defender, excellent timing, and is more often than not on deeper throws.

During that same span, Daniels only has four turnover-worthy passes. That one’s a little easier to define: a pass with a high chance of being intercepted or doing a poor job taking care of the ball. Fumbling can also play a factor here.

It appears a lot of the grading system is based off passing, so it wasn’t clear exactly how Daniels’ running ability factored in — though it PFF did incorporated that into his score:

He’s chipped in as a talented scrambler as well, gaining 202 of his 214 rushing yards on 25 scramble attempts and gained an additional 11 first downs on the ground. A new No. 5 is in town and the Sun Devil faithful have to be happy with the early results.

In Tucson, Tate broke out onto the NCAA scene in 2017 due to his running ability, and PFF was sure to note that in his ranking as the No. 8 quarterback this year. The site called Tate “perhaps the nation’s most electric dual-threat quarterback when healthy.”

Tate has 12 rushing conversions (first downs and touchdowns) on the season.

But it’s not just running for Tate. His passing grades are at “near-elite” levels, the site wrote.

That all goes without saying that he’s improved his passing grades to career-high, near-elite levels this year. He’s completing 67.5% of his attempts and averaging 9.1 yards per pass through the air. … as he continues to play at a healthy level, there may be no stopping him as he’s approaching overall grade levels he saw during his Heisman candidacy season of 2017.

LSU’s Joe Burrow is ranked at No. 1 with Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts and Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa at No. 2 and 3, respectively. Brock Purdy, a Gilbert Perry High School graduate, is No. 9 at Iowa State.

ASU plays against Washington State and Arizona faces Washington on Saturday.

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