Here’s where Emory Jones lands in 247Sports SEC quarterback power rankings

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Quarterbacks like Emory Jones are becoming increasingly rare. In the age of the transfer portal, it’s not often you see a fourth-year former blue-chip passer on a team that he has never started a game for. Jones has bided his time over the last three seasons as a backup to both Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask.

Though he would have been a hot commodity in the transfer portal at any point in that span, Jones stuck it out. And now, he’s finally this team’s quarterback. Though he faced a bit of a challenge in the offseason from Anthony Richardson, who looks like a stud in the making, Jones separated himself in fall camp and was named the starter.

He’s a very different player than Trask and Franks were. While those guys were big, gunslinging quarterbacks with limited mobility, Jones is a much better athlete and can make a lot more plays with his legs. With that being said, he also has a very strong arm for a 6-foot-2-inch quarterback and his accuracy (especially on the run) has been notable despite limited action.

The SEC saw a lot of turnover at the quarterback position this offseason after the two best players from last year — Trask and Alabama‘s Mac Jones — both were drafted. There aren’t many quarterbacks in this league without some questions, including the player who ranks No. 1 in 247Sports’ SEC passer power rankings.

Georgia’s J.T. Daniels didn’t see the field until late in the year last year, and coach Kirby Smart probably regrets it. He was clearly the best option over D’Wan Mathis and Stetson Bennett. But Daniels is seeing legitimate Heisman Trophy hype this offseason, and he’s yet to demonstrate that level of success.

The inexperience of many of the passers in this league is a reason why Jones, who will make his first career start against Florida Atlantic on Saturday, already ranks No. 5.

The battle for the No. 5 spot in this ranking heading into this weekend’s openers was perhaps the toughest of them all. Look, Emory Jones will have no trouble producing in Dan Mullen’s system, an offensive scheme the Gators’ fourth-year coach he says will cater to his quarterback’s strengths this season. The idea Florida’s offense may not be as explosive as it was last season with Jones back there at quarterback is silly. If anything, losing Kyle Pitts and Kadarius Toney are the primary factors in that projection, not quarterback play. Given Mullen’s career track record, I’d expect both Jones and Anthony Richardson to play this fall with Jones handling the bulk of the workload with success.

You don’t have to go out on a limb to project a successful season for Jones. Coach Dan Mullen has always gotten good production out of his quarterbacks, and that has held true every season he’s been at Florida.

The only other SEC passers who rank above him are Ole Miss’ Matt Corral, Alabama’s Bryce Young (who has also never started a game) and LSU‘s Max Johnson (who led the victory over the Gators in the Swamp as a true freshman last year).

If Florida’s offensive line struggles in run blocking and its defense struggles to stop the pass again, it could be a tough year as far as competing to win the SEC East. But regardless, Jones should continue on the legacy of productive Mullen-coached quarterbacks.

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