Washington football needed to add some depth at the quarterback position for 2021, and they’ve done just that
After two quarterbacks entered the transfer portal in the last few weeks, Washington football has turned to the portal themselves to add some quality depth. No college team ever wants to go into a season with only two scholarship quarterbacks, so this was a very important move for Jimmy Lake and his staff to make.
They also went out and added a very talented graduate transfer in former Colorado State quarterback Patrick O’Brien. Originally a four-star recruit from San Juan Capistrano, California, O’Brien committed to the University of Nebraska out of high school. He transferred after just one year with the Cornhuskers, and sat out the 2018 season.
His best season was in 2019, when he played in 11 games for the Rams, and he threw for 2,803 yards and 13 touchdowns against seven interceptions. 2020 wasn’t nearly as successful, as he threw for 591 yards over the team’s four games, and just three touchdowns to go with two interceptions.
He’ll be walking into a stiff competition on Montlake, with incumbent starter Dylan Morris and incoming five-star freshman Sam Huard in his way. This was most likely a depth move as Morris and Huard are much better long term options at the position, since O’Brien only has one year of eligibility remaining.
While the Huskies have multiple walk-on quarterbacks on the roster, going into a season with two quarterbacks on scholarship is a recipe for disaster. If one gets injured, the team is just one step away from possible catastrophe. While teams have definitely managed with a walk-on quarterback before, they usually aren’t the best option for a Power 5 team who want to compete for a national title. O’Brien at the very least is giving this team an extra body at the position.
If he doesn’t end up as the starter, he’s an experienced option that can help the younger players in the room learn and grow during his final year in college.