Michigan State has taken a giant leap forward on the offensive side of the football this fall. Led by Heisman hopefuls junior running back Kenneth Walker III, and junior wide receiver Jayden Reed the offense looks light-years better than what we have seen in years past.
Walker and Reed get a majority of the credit for the turn-around this season which they deserve, although sophomore quarterback Payton Thorne has been criminally underrated when given the credit for the success of the offense.
Thorne ranks in the top half of the Big Ten and country in a number of passing statistics such as passing yards, average per attempt, longest pass, touchdowns, interceptions, and passer rating.
Thorne ranks fifth in the Big Ten in passing yards with 1,236 through five games.
Third in the Big Ten in average per attempt at 9.5 yards per attempt.
He has the second longest pass with an 85 yard completion.
Tied for third in touchdown passes with 11.
He has thrown only one interception, no other quarterback with at least 1,000 passing yards has less.
His passer rating of 169.3 is second in the Big Ten as well behind only Ohio State's CJ Stroud.
Thorne isn't flashy, more or less has simply just 'done his job' for the team this season but he's done it well. Last season Michigan State struggled to find consistent quarterback play last fall but this season with Thorne taking the reign Michigan State has found their stride as a top offense in the Big Ten again.
While Walker and Reed deserve huge credit for the turnaround, Thorne's play so far has been vastly underrated. Thorne has been a top five quarterback in the Big Ten and the numbers prove it.