Mendenhall endorses Armstrong as next-level quarterback

armstrong mendenhall
Brennan Armstrong and Bronco Mendenhall. Photo courtesy UVA Athletics.

Brennan Armstrong was a three-star coming out of high school. Now he’s very much in the mix for the NFL, the only question being, when?

“He’s absolutely in that realm. He’s not kind of on the fringe, he’s right in the middle of that realm,” UVA coach Bronco Mendenhall said of his second-year signal-caller, who is currently leading FBS in passing yards per game (394.6 yards per game).

Maybe more important to this discussion is that Pro Football Focus has Armstrong graded out as the fourth-best passer in FBS, and it’s not a mirage. He’s third in efficiency and in total yards on deep balls, #1 in yards and 18th in efficiency on intermediate throws.

We’re not talking dink-and-dunk to the backs stuff here.

“I don’t know how to endorse him or share what I think about him any more than I have starting from last year to this year. He’s really good,” Mendenhall said. “He can make every single throw, he’s tough, competitive, smart, durable. Anyone that doesn’t think that, I guess they’ll find out the hard way, right? All you have to do is watch him play, and the production speaks for itself.

“I’m really impressed. He has tons and tons of room to improve as well. But capability is right there in every level. I really think he’s a good player,” Mendenhall said.

All those nice things said, Armstrong is coming off his worst performance of his young career, graded out by PFF at an adjusted (since I first checked postgame) at 49.8, after completing 25 of his 44 attempts for 268 yards and a TD, and an INT that set up a third-quarter Miami touchdown.

That INT soured Armstrong post-game, which Mendenhall pointed to as a sign of his QB’s maturity.

“How refreshing to win, to win that kind of game, to battle, all that, then have your quarterback, the very first thing he’s thinking about is how to improve,” Mendenhall said. “Yeah, he was upset about his interception. Came right to me after the game and said, That one’s on me. I don’t have to say a thing, which is so remarkable and so refreshing, that accountability.”

Story by Chris Graham

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