In a no-brainer, the analytics site Pro Football Focus (PFF — yes, my former employer), selected Cal QB Chase Garbers as the most valuable returning player on the Cal football team in 2020.
Not a whole lot of context was given in the article that gave a ‘most valuable returner’ for all 130 teams but the choice of Garbers for Cal is unsurprising as the majority of ‘plus-play’ quarterbacks made the list across the nation. In total, 26 different quarterbacks were given the ‘most valuable’ moniker for teams across the country.
Like Wilson, Cal’s Chase Garbers had his 2019 season derailed by injuries, but he was a good signal-caller when on the field for the Golden Bears. He owned a 76.6 PFF passing grade and was particularly great when going deep by tossing 14 big-time throws versus just one turnover-worthy play on his 41 20-plus yard attempts. Cal brought in Bill Musgrave to revamp its offense in 2020, so it will be interesting to see how Garbers fares in his fresh system.
Again, no real context was given at how the selections came about as the writeup began with “Using PFF’s advanced database, we present the top player on all 130 FBS college football teams” as its launch point. It begs the question at how the choices were made but here we are.
Not sure if I disagree with Garbers as the best choice here but I can’t not think that this was just a blanketed decision looking at one subset of numbers across all 130 teams. Arguments can be made that Cam Bynum and Elijah Hicks would be ‘more valuable’ this season since they’re replacing two NFL talents.
Fine, maybe not replacing, but will be increasingly counted on in the backend as the veteran leaders in the secondary that is now without Jaylinn Hawkins and Ashtyn Davis.
Garbers is a solid choice and definitely not one that I’d be compelled enough to craft an argument for not being there over some other players that made the choice for the other 129 teams.
Do you agree? Is Garbers the most valuable player returning to Cal in 2020? Other than Garbers, who would you pick?