During the quarantine, we’ll be breaking down one player per day, per position as voted on by Washington football fans on our Twitter!
This was a close vote, but Washington football’s all-time leader in passing yards, touchdowns, and wins edged out Jake Locker in our first vote.
Jake Browning was a top-100 recruit coming out of Folsom, California, and he won the starting job before his true freshman season and went on to have one of the most storied careers in Husky history. That career included two Pac-12 Championships, the second-highest finish for any Husky in Heisman voting, and two blowout wins against Oregon that snapped their 12 game win streak over Washington.
During his four years at quarterback, Washington reached three New Year’s Six bowl games, including a matchup against Alabama in the College Football Playoff at the Peach Bowl when he was only a sophomore and a Rose Bowl berth against Ohio State following his senior year. He also set the single-season passing touchdown record at Washington with 43 during his unreal sophomore season.
Browning quarterbacked the Huskies to some of the biggest wins in school history, including the 70-21 win at Oregon, the thrashing of #8 Colorado in the 2016 Pac-12 title game, and the 10 point comeback in the last two minutes at home against Utah in 2017.
His true legacy has always been a hotly debated topic among Husky fans, as his struggles with arm strength (especially after a shoulder injury during his sophomore year), some questionable decision making, and a major regression after the record-setting second year. But that shouldn’t take away from the fact that Browning was at the helm through the rebirth of Washington football, and along with Chris Petersen, led the program back to relevance on a national level.
After Washington, Browning signed as an undrafted free agent with the Minnesota Vikings. The deal included a $140,000 signing bonus, which is the largest signing bonus ever given to an undrafted free agent straight out of college.