PFF: No. 25 ASU football overrated in preseason AP poll

Aug 19, 2021, 8:26 AM
The Arizona State Sun Devils offense and defense line up during the college football spring scrimma...
The Arizona State Sun Devils offense and defense line up during the college football spring scrimmage of the Arizona State Sun Devils on March 28, 2021 at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Arizona State Sun Devils football program snuck in as the last team in The Associated Press Top 25 rankings this preseason, but Anthony Treash of PFF thinks the team is overrated heading into the 2021 season.

His reasoning? Treash is not sold on quarterback Jayden Daniels and the Arizona State offense.

Quarterback Jayden Daniels has yet to prove he can successfully execute a downfield passing offense, as the 2019 No. 35 overall recruit has led the program to the third-worst passing grade in the Pac-12 over the last couple of years.

In 2019, Daniels became the first true freshman in program history to start the season opener at quarterback. He played in 12 games, throwing for 2,943 yards with 17 touchdowns and two interceptions.

However, the offense as a whole was No. 96 total offense out of 130 teams in 2019, averaging 24.8 points per game. The Sun Devils were the No. 95 offense in terms of average yards per game with 372.1.

Only playing four games in 2020, the Arizona State offense was inconsistent at best. In losses to Southern California and UCLA, the offense had five turnovers between the two games and averaged 22.5 points.

However, in the Sun Devils’ wins against Arizona and Oregon State to end the year, they didn’t turn the ball over once and averaged 58 points between the two games, most notably scoring 70 on the Wildcats.

While Treash isn’t very high on Daniels as a passer, he’s just as down on the group of receivers he will be throwing to.

Yes, he is a dangerous weapon on the ground, but that can only get this team so far, especially with its lackluster receiving room.

The Sun Devils have plenty of options at receiver but lack a true No. 1 option for Daniels. Ricky Pearsall, Johnny Wilson, L.V. Bunkley-Shelton and Geordon Porter are amongst the names of wide receivers Daniels could rely on in the passing game, as well as tight ends Curtis Hodges and Jalin Conyers.

Joining the Sun Devils in Treash’s overrated team’s is the No. 7 Iowa State Cyclones and a fellow Pac-12 team, the No. 11 Oregon Ducks.

Arizona State kicks off its 2021 regular season under the lights of Sun Devil Stadium against Southern Utah on Sept. 2. at 7:30 p.m.

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PFF: No. 25 ASU football overrated in preseason AP poll