LSU’s 16 best individual offensive performances this century

Great teams are defined by great players. Great players are defined by great performances.

Here, we’ll be looking at LSU’s 16 best offensive performances this century.

Like I do with all lists, I’m going to add a disclaimer or two. The nature of lists is a subjective one. There isn’t always a noticeable difference between No. 7 and No. 8, for example.

I’ve tried to avoid recency bias and repeating the same player over and over. This whole list can’t be Joe Burrow and Ja'Marr Chase.

I’ve also taken context into account instead of just relying on the numbers.

With that out of the way, let’s dive right in.

Zach Mettenberger vs. Georgia (2013)

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This is one of only two losses to make this list.

In 2013, LSU faced Georgia with a national spotlight. College GameDay was there, and the game lived up to the hype with [autotag]Zach Mettenberger[/autotag] and Aaron Murray dueling it out.

This wasn’t just one of Mettenberger or LSU’s best games. It was one of the best performances in the SEC that year.

Mettenberger surpassed 350 yards while completing over 60% of his passes with three touchdowns and no picks. He was the only QB in the conference to do that against an SEC opponent that season.

Johnny Manziel did it, but it came against Duke in the bowl game. Mettenberger made play after play in a tough environment on the road.

Georgia delivered the final blow late and LSU couldn’t conjure up any magic late, but it was a great performance from Mett nonetheless.

Jayden Daniels vs. Alabama (2022)

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This is the most recent game on this list.

Daniels didn’t light the stat sheet up like some other performers on this list, but the numbers don’t tell the whole story.

It was the biggest game of the year for LSU and the first time [autotag]Brian Kelly[/autotag] faced Nick Saban at LSU. The Tigers had a chance to make a statement and they did.

On LSU’s first play in overtime, Daniels ran 25 yards for a TD. He delivered a perfectly placed ball to [autotag]Mason Taylor[/autotag] on the two-point conversion to give LSU the win.

Daniels threw for 182 yards and ran for 95 more. He totaled three touchdowns and didn’t throw a pick.

Against Saban’s Alabama, he’s the only QB ever to complete over 65 percent of his passes, rush for over 75 yards and total three touchdowns without an interception.

Leonard Fournette vs. Auburn (2015)

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This wasn’t Fournette’s breakout game, which came the year prior against Notre Dame, but this was the game that put Fournette at the center of college football.

There was nothing Auburn could do. Fournette was in a different class. Running over guys, throwing defenders off him, and showcasing breakaway speed.

Fournette ran for 228 yards and three touchdowns, but he did it on just 19 carries.

Jeremy Hill vs. Iowa (2014)

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On New Year’s Day in 2014, LSU faced Iowa in the Outback Bowl. LSU was without Mettenberger, and QB [autotag]Anthony Jennings[/autotag] struggled.

[autotag]Jeremy Hill[/autotag] was LSU’s offense this day. Iowa knew what was coming but it didn’t matter.

Hill ran for 216 yards and two touchdowns in his final game as a Tiger. Those 216 yards made up 72% of LSU’s total offense and were a career-high for Hill.

Tyrion Davis-Price vs. Florida (2021)

Tyrion Davis-Price
Tyrion Davis-Price

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Out of all the performances on this list, this one might fly under the radar. LSU beat Florida, but it was overshadowed when LSU announced its separation agreement with Ed Orgeron the next day.

However, Davis-Price set LSU’s single-game rushing yard record. That means something considering all the greats LSU’s seen come through at that position.

Davis-Price ran for 287 yards, over 100 more than his next-best career game. He scored three times, too.

Devery Henderson vs. Kentucky (2002)

The Bluegrass Miracle game. [autotag]Devery Henderson[/autotag] stole the show.

After Gatorade had already been dumped on the Kentucky sideline, [autotag]Marcus Randall[/autotag] reared back to throw in the final seconds. A tipped ball ended up in the hands of Henderson, and LSU won the game.

Henderson had five catches for 201 yards and three touchdowns, including that game-winner. He ran for 10 yards too and was a factor in the return game. He had 298 all-purpose yards on the day.

Fournette vs. Ole Miss (2016)

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Fournette appears again, this time for his 2016 game against Ole Miss. His 2016 season was riddled with injuries, but on this October night, he was vintage Fournette.

What makes this performance standout was the efficiency. Fournette posted a career-high 284 yards but needed just 16 carries to get there.

He had 25 yards through the air too, bringing his total yardage over 300. He had touchdown runs of 59, 76 and 78 yards.

LSU was up in the fourth and with Fournette’s nagging ankle, his workload tailed off. It it wasn’t for that, the night would have been even more prolific.

Joe Burrow at Texas A&M (2018)

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This might not be No. 1 on this list, but it’s certainly the gustiest performance. Having to lead LSU’s offense through seven overtimes, Burrow’s level of play didn’t tail off.

He threw for 270 yards and ran for 131 more (not including sack yardage). He was responsible for six touchdowns on the night.

Burrow took hit after hit and hung in there. LSU lost in heartbreaking fashion, but this was just a hint at what Burrow would be delivering in 2019.

Josh Reed vs. Alabama (2001)

(AP Photo/Bill Haber)

Reed is LSU’s all-time leading receiver, and on this day, he racked up 293 yards on 19 catches with a touchdown.

The 19 catches remain a program record.

He returned two kicks for 40 yards, bringing his all-purpose total well over the 300 mark. The man throwing to him, [autotag]Rohan Davey[/autotag], had a record-setting day with the help of Reed.

Kayshon Boutte vs. Ole Miss in 2020

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This game doesn’t have the same stakes as some of the others on this list.

The circumstances surrounding the game were a bit strange too. It was tucked away late in December in the COVID season that everyone wants to forget. It was rainy and the crowd was nothing resembling what fans have come to expect from Tiger Stadium.

If an apocalypse movie was set at an LSU game, this would have been it.

[autotag]Kayshon Boutte[/autotag] gave the Tigers something to cheer for though. His 308 receiving yards set an SEC record and helped LSU win a shootout against Lane Kiffin’s Ole Miss.

[autotag]Max Johnson[/autotag] force-fed Boutte, the freshman sensation, and it worked. LSU didn’t have many bright spots that year, but this was one of them.

Rohan Davey at Alabama (2001)

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As mentioned, Davey had his own offensive explosion on Josh Reed’s big-day.

This is the most prolific passing performance in LSU history. Even Burrow didn’t surpass it.

Davey threw for 528 yards, still an LSU record. He completed 79.5% of his passes despite throwing 44 times. Only six other QBs have done that or better this century. Davey is the only one to do it while also throwing for 500+ yards.

Davey averaged 12.0 yards per attempt and threw two touchdowns. LSU won the game.

Joe Burrow at Texas (2019)

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Burrow has several games that could have made this list. This isn’t the first time we’re seeing him, and it won’t be the last.

I chose this one because of its magnitude. LSU was on the road in a much anticipated top-10 matchup. College GameDay was there, and ABC put it on Saturday night.

Burrow delivered with 471 yards and four touchdowns. But it’s not just the numbers, it’s the way Burrow did it.

LSU needed a third-down conversion late in the game. Burrow found Jefferson to seal the deal in the now famous “3rd and 17.”

It was one of a few Heisman moments Burrow had that year.

Justin Vincent vs. Georgia (2003)

Justin Vincent LSU
Justin Vincent LSU

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

With an SEC title and trip to the national championship game on the line, running back [autotag]Justin Vincent[/autotag] had a career day.

Vincent ran for 201 yards and two touchdowns. He averaged 11.2 yards per carry and scored twice.

He did this against a Georgia defense that ranked third in the nation in scoring defense and allowed just 3.1 yards per rush.

201 yards were a career-high for Vincent and this was a big moment on LSU’s road to its first national title since 1958.

Ja'Marr Chase vs. Clemson in 2020

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Chase’s 221 yards and two touchdowns against Clemson helped propel LSU to a national title.

Down seven, Burrow found Chase for 52 yards to put LSU on the board. Chase later scored the go-ahead TD in the second. The Tigers didn’t look back from that point, leading the rest of the way.

221 yards remains a playoff championship game record. We didn’t know it at the time, but this would be the last game Chase played as a Tiger.

Justin Jefferson vs. Oklahoma in 2019

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The four-touchdown game.

LSU piled on Oklahoma in the first-half, thanks to a scoring explosion from [autotag]Justin Jefferson[/autotag]. The Sooners had nothing. Burrow and Jefferson were on a different planet.

Jefferson caught 14 passes for 227 yards and four touchdowns. LSU won the game and advanced to the title game.

Joe Burrow vs. Oklahoma (2019)

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Like Davey and Reed, Burrow and Jefferson make another QB-to-WR tandem to make this list.

Burrow notched eight total touchdowns en route to a playoff victory and national title birth. The eight touchdowns remain a program record, and he did it in one of the sport’s biggest moments.

LSU had 49 points at the half as Burrow did his work quick. He could have done whatever he wanted that day had LSU kept its foot on the gas.

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Story originally appeared on LSU Tigers Wire