He hasn’t been officially pegged as Ohio State’s starting quarterback yet, but the expectation is that Justin Fields will be leading the Buckeye offense Aug. 31 to open the 2019 season.
If that happens, Ohio State will once again have a legitimate running threat behind center (no offense to Dwayne Haskins, but that simply wasn’t his strong suit). But don’t let yourself think that means Fields will be another J.T. Barrett or Braxton Miller – players who put up solid passing numbers but made their biggest impact with their legs.
Like Haskins last year, Fields is a thrower first. That’s how he wants it to be and there’s no secret as to the reason why.
He wants to be an NFL quarterback.
“I just look to throw first and then if nobody is open or the play breaks down, then I run,” Fields said. “I mainly just look to throw first.
“At the next level you won’t be able to just take the ball down and run. That’s a passing league, that’s what you do. That’s kind of why I came here.”
Historically, Ohio State hasn’t churned out many NFL quarterbacks. Haskins, though, is set to be a first-round pick this spring. That’s the effect new head coach Ryan Day had on the program as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, and it’s a trend he’ll try to continue now that he’s the head man.
But Fields knows he’ll still have to run sometimes to win in college. And while the NFL is the ultimate goal, he wants to help the Buckeyes put as many wins on the board as possible as well.
“Really, at the end of the day, you kind of just have to see what you have to do to win the game,” he said. “If there’s one game where I have to run more or a game where I have to pass more, it’s just anything you have to do to win.”