D’Eriq King and Jaelan Phillips named to PFF top 101 2020 CFB players

Oct 10, 2020; Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 10, 2020; Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports /

Miami football players, quarterback D’Eriq King and defensive end Jaelan Phillips were named two of the top 101 2020 college football players by Pro Football Focus earlier this week. King was ranked the 48th best player during the 2020 season and Phillips 54th. Phillips transferred to Miami in January 2019 and King in January 2020.

The addition of King to the Miami football program was a significant upgrade at QB for a Hurricanes offense that lacked leadership and playmaking ability at the position in 2019. The hiring of offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee from SMU during the 2020 offseason was also a huge addition for the Hurricanes.

Led by King, Miami was 26th in scoring and 32nd in total offense in 2020. With King and Lashlee back for the 2021 season, the Hurricanes should improve offensively. King is one of the most dynamic players in college football and was named the best returning player who could have entered the 2021 draft but is returning.

King leads a Miami offense that returns almost everyone but tight end Brevin Jordan in 2021. Jordan decided to leave for the NFL following his junior season. King will have junior Will Mallory and incoming freshman Elijah Arroyo leading the Hurricanes TEs to throw to in 2021. Experience and depth will help Miami in 2021.

"48. QB D’ERIQ KING, MIAMI (FL)King was everything The U had hoped for: An elite dual-threat. He made numerous plays both through the air and on the ground in his first season with the Hurricanes, resulting in a 90.6 PFF grade for the season (10th in the FBS). On 111 runs (85 designed, 26 scrambles), Kind totaled 26 runs of 10 or more yards.He produced more than 10 yards after contact on thirteen of those, the most at the position. As a passer, King hardly put the ball in harm’s way. He consistently made the right decision and came in at No. 3 in the FBS in turnover-worthy play rate (1.7%)."

The Miami defense loses more than the offense. Jaelan Phillips decided to forego two seasons of liability to enter the NFL Draft where he will likely be a first or second-day selection. Miami also loses graduate transfer

Quincy Roche

who decided to give up one more season of eligibility to enter the NFL Draft.

"54. EDGE JAELAN PHILLIPS, MIAMI (FL)Everyone was excited to watch Gregory Rousseau and Quincy Roche form one of the best pass-rush tandems in college football in 2020, but Rousseau elected to opt out before the season started.This opened the door for UCLA transfer Phillips to see substantial action, and surprisingly, he helped give Miami that top pass-rushing duo we all thought we were going to see with Rousseau and Roche."

In addition to Phillips and Roche, the Miami defense also lost backup DE/LB Patrick Joyner who transferred to Utah State to join former Hurricanes co-defensive coordinator Ephraim Banda. The remainder of the Miami defense will return in 2021. The Miami defense took a huge step back in 2020.

Next. D'Eriq King top CFP player returning who would have entered draft. dark

Miami will have one of its most experienced teams throughout the roster in 2021. The return of King will be a huge part of that. King and Phillips played a huge part in the Hurricanes improving from 6-7 in 2019 to 8-3 in 2020. The end of the season was disappointing but King and Phillips created many special moments in 2020.