You all remember Cardale “12 Gauge” Jones, right? The third-string quarterback that led Ohio State to the Big 10 Championship and then past both Alabama and Oregon to win the national championship last season? Well, he found his way into the starting lineup because of injuries, but believe me, this guy is talented.
After season-ending injuries to both Braxton Miller and J.T. Barrett, he took over the starting job midway through the Michigan game and went on an amazing run to bring back two championship rings and a Sugar Bowl trophy back to Columbus. Jones knows that he was put in that position due to those unfortunate injuries to his teammates, and now he is stuck right where he was to start the 2014 season.
Jones recently spoke with ESPN about taking a backseat to Miller and Barrett to begin the season.
“We as a team and me as an individual get a lot of praise for how well we did in those games, but I didn’t even grade out as a champion as far as coach’s standards. I haven’t proven anything yet,” Jones said.
“I haven’t proven anything to myself, my teammates, my coaches to label myself as a starter. That’s my opinion, my personal opinion. I’m kind of harder on myself than the coaches, but I was thrown into that position. I didn’t beat out J.T. [Barrett] going into the Michigan game. I didn’t beat out Braxton [Miller]. Unfortunately both guys got hurt, and luckily enough I was prepared to try to take advantage of the situation.”
Miller is back and will be throwing without limitations after a shoulder injury last year and Barrett already started taking snaps in the spring, albeit on a limited basis as well. Jones knows that he is going to have to work to have another chance at the starting job. He proved himself as a leader during the postseason last year and he hopes that he has a chance to show the nation just how good he can be.
Let’s just hope that the situation doesn’t arise thanks to more devastating injuries.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports