There was a big change to the 2022 recruiting class when top player Quinn Ewers decided to reclassify to 2021. With Ewers now attending Ohio State this year, five-star and LSU commit Walker Howard takes over the top spot at quarterback. Howard is a Louisiana native and has been committed to the Tigers since June of 2020.
Howard is ranked as the 21st best player in the country and second-best in Louisiana in the 247sports composite. He goes to a school that recently produced a number one overall pick in Joe Burrow.
In 2020, LSU had a few quarterbacks start for them in Max Johnson, Myles Brennan, and TJ Finley. Finley transferred to Auburn in the offseason, and Brennan’s 2021 season is in doubt due to an arm injury. The battle now comes down to Johnson and true freshman Garrett Nussmeier. If they can’t take control of the job, Howard might be able to when he arrives on campus.
Howard is listed at 6’1”, 195 pounds, so he is a little shorter than what teams look for. However, with quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray having success while being undersized, it’s not an issue. Howard led St. Thomas More to a state title in 2020. He finished the season with 3430 passing yards and 42 TDs in ten games.
One thing that stands out when watching Howard is his movement outside the pocket. On the second play of his junior highlights, he moves to his left and finds a receiver in the endzone. He can also take the ball and run with it for yards. His highlights showed him did this on a draw play, taking it for a 25-yard touchdown.
Of course, being a quarterback is more than just having a good pair of legs. Luckily for Howard, he has good accuracy, touch and can get the ball out of his hand quickly. On the first play of his highlights, he did just that by getting the pass over the defender’s hands and right into the receivers. Howard hit his receiver in stride multiple times on his highlights.
Howard can also work well from inside the pocket. He moves around it staying away from defenders and keeps his eyes downfield. There’s a play where Howard moved up to get away from multiple rushers coming at him and found a receiver inside the five. He’ll also stand in there and take a hit after releasing the ball.
Howard’s arm is not to be messed with, as he’s able to throw it 40 yards downfield with no problems. There was a play where he threw it from his own 30, and the receiver caught the pass on the opponents’ 25.
Howard can try to do too much with the football at times. There are times when he’ll throw it in situations that would be picked at the college level. He’ll also try to move around a little too much while trying to find someone downfield. Doing that too often will lead to sacks.
Howard could see the field early for LSU if things go right for him. Even if he doesn’t, Howard still has the potential to be a productive quarterback in the SEC.