- Graduate transfer QB Anthony Brown has chosen Oregon for his final year of eligibility
- Brown was a three-year starter at Boston College, but only played half of the 2019 season after suffering a leg injury
- Read below to see how this move will impact the Ducks’ National Championship and CFP odds
Oregon has added one of the most experienced quarterbacks available on the transfer market in Boston College’s Anthony Brown.
Is this the type of move that will bolster the Ducks’ Four-Team CFP odds and chance at a National Title?
2021 National Championship Odds
Odds taken April 2nd
Brown’s Experience an Asset
Brown arrives in Oregon after spending three seasons as the starter for Boston College. His CFB career has unfortunately been hampered by injuries, including in 2019 when he played just six games before suffering a season-ending leg injury.
In 28 career games as a starter for the Eagles, Brown recorded 4,738 passing yards and 40 TDs with 20 interceptions. He also had 423 yards rushing.
With Justin Herbert off to the NFL, the Ducks were in need of some experience at the QB position. Brown has proven when healthy that he’s a solid dual-threat QB with a strong arm and good deep ball. The Eagles’ offense wasn’t anything special under Steve Addazio, so Brown has the talent to improve in a different offensive scheme.
Redshirt sophomore Tyler Shough was the Ducks’ first-team QB in limited spring practices and projected to be the starter before Brown transferred. He may still end up in that role when the season eventually starts, but I expect a fierce battle in training camp. Oregon may have gotten Brown as an insurance policy or for his veteran presence, but a three-year starter isn’t transferring to a new school just to sit on the sidelines.
Does landing Brown make Oregon worth betting on to win a title or make the CFP?
Ducks Remain Tier Below
Oregon’s National Championship odds are still being listed at +2500 following the move. It’s hard to see these odds improving too much considering Brown isn’t even guaranteed to walk right into the starting role. The Ducks should still be considered a contender when you consider that the majority of starters from their defense unit that ranked 22nd nationally last season are returning.
— Oregon Football (@oregonfootball) March 10, 2020
A big reason to shy away from placing an early longshot bet on the Ducks is the talent powerhouses Clemson and Ohio State are returning. The Tigers have another cakewalk of a schedule in the ACC behind offensive stars Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne, while the Buckeyes seem destined for another run with Heisman favorite Justin Fields after coming up short in 2019.
Odds to Make 2021 College Football Playoff
Navigating Front-Loaded Schedule Will Be Key
The Ducks appear to have some decent value at +500 to make the CFP. Now that they have an experienced QB to go with an elite defensive unit, they have a realistic shot at returning to the CFP for the first time since 2014-15. They will have to navigate a tough early schedule, however, including playing Ohio State in Week 2.
I’d advise holding off betting Oregon to make the playoff until you see how they perform against the Buckeyes in Week 2. The Ducks managed just two losses in 2019 yet didn’t make the CFP. Considering they have to face some solid Pac-12 teams in Washington and USC later on, there will still be value betting on them to make the CFP depending on how they perform against Ohio State.
Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Florida, Auburn, Penn State and Notre Dame are all programs that can also be considered longshot contenders in 2020. Adding Brown isn’t the type of move that suddenly gives Oregon a major edge, especially considering SEC teams such as Florida are returning their starting QB.
Brown has the potential to be a great fit and challenge Tyler Shough for snaps. Given the Ducks difficult schedule, however, this isn’t the type of move that should make you immediately throw down money on them making a serious run in 2020.
I like the experience and potential Brown brings to the table, so if the Ducks pull off an upset in Week 2, I’d look to bet on them making the CFP. But for now, this move just solidifies my pick of Oregon winning the Pac-12 for a second consecutive season.
Pick: Oregon to win the Pac-12 (+225)
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