Three Miami Hurricanes listed by PFF as more important than Greg Rousseau was

ORLANDO, FL - AUGUST 24: .(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
ORLANDO, FL - AUGUST 24: .(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

In their inaugural college football annual magazine Pro Football Focus lists three most Miami Hurricanes as the important players over DE Greg Rosseau before he opted out for the 2020 season.

The decision by redshirt sophomore defensive end Greg Rousseau to opt-out for the 2020 season is not as big of a loss as he is being made out to be using the rankings that Pro Football Focus has for Miami Hurricanes players. Three Miami players were ranked ahead of Rousseau as the most important players entering the 2020 season.

The additions of graduate transfers quarterback D’Eriq King and defensive end Quincy Roche and return to health of junior tight end Brevin Jordan were all ranked ahead of Rousseau who was projected as the fourth-best player on the Miami football roster entering the 2020 season before he chose to opt-out.

King and Roche were ranked the first and second-best Miami Hurricanes players in 2020 to match their jersey numbers with Jordan who wears number nine the third-best player. Roche is the top returning pass rusher in college football according to PFF’s grade.

King should bounce back after a tough four-game stretch before he was asked to redshirt last season by Houston coach Dana Holgersen. King was not as good of a fit in the Holgersen offense as he should be playing for new Miami offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee. Lashlee is one of the best offensive minds in college football

"1 D’ERIQ KINGQB | King’s limited 2019 was nothing short of atrocious, but we can’t let recency bias cloud how special his 2018 was. That year, he ranked second among FBS QBs in PFF grade, behind only Kyler Murray. He’s the perfect representation of a dual-threat QB."

King was graded the top player for Miami in the inaugural College Football Preview by PFF. The addition of King to the Hurricanes roster in 2020 is a huge upgrade. Miami should receive much better play in 2020 with King at QB and Lashlee calling the plays. King should be Miami’s best QB since 2016.

The addition of Roche is expected to be an upgrade at edge rusher for the Miami Hurricanes over Jonathan Garvin. Garvin had an excellent season in 2019 without the sack production. Garvin earned high grades as a pass rusher in 2019, but Roche was much higher according to PFF.

"2 QUINCY ROCHE EDGE In addition to landing one of the top QB transfers, Miami got one of the best non-QB transfers in Roche. At Temple in 2019, Roche had the second-best pass-rushing grade, behind Chase Young, and the fifth-most valuable season we have seen by an edge.Jonathan Garvin-QUINCY ROCHEGarvin had great pass-rush production for the Hurricanes in 2019 — he earned an 88.2 pass-rush grade over the course of the year (19th in FBS). That said, they got a golden ticket upgrade in Roche, who generated 0.55 win shares in 2019, as opposed to Garvin’s 0.15."

Jordan is one of the most productive pass-catching TEs in college football when healthy. After missing one game as a freshman in 2018, Jordan missed the final three games of 2019 with a season-ending foot injury. Jordan has 67 receptions for 782 yards and six TDs in his first two seasons.

"3 BREVIN JORDAN TE Jordan isn’t a complete TE, but he clearly checks the athleticism box at the position. He brings value after the catch, as 13 of his 35 catches had 10-plus yards after the catch. With King at QB, Jordan is in line for a monster 2020 breakout year."

Expect Lashlee to utilize Jordan’s athletic ability more than the two previous offensive regimes for the Miami Hurricanes. At 6’3, 245 pounds, Jordan is a tough matchup for defensive backs because of his size and linebackers because of his speed. If Jordan can stay healthy as PFF states he should have a breakout season in 2020.

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Rousseau had an 80.7 pass-rush grade from PFF and as they stated he was just starting to scratch the surface in 2019. The sure 2021 NFL first-round draft pick started only seven games last season. With more snaps, Rousseau would likely have challenged the Miami single-season sack record of 17 after reaching 15.5 in 2019.