From Hendon Hooker to Spencer Rattler to KJ Jefferson, who is the SEC's second-best QB?

Blake Toppmeyer John Adams
USA TODAY NETWORK
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The SEC is loaded with veteran quarterbacks and returning starters for the 2022 season.

Alabama's reigning Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young headlines the group, but the talent runs much deeper than one or two guys.

On this edition of "SEC Football Unfiltered," a podcast from the USA TODAY Network, hosts Blake Toppmeyer and John Adams each draft four SEC quarterbacks as they try to build the best four-deep quarterback depth chart.

Toppmeyer gets the No. 1 pick, but Adams insists his contingent is better, top to bottom.

Here are their picks:

Toppmeyer Pick 1: Bryce Young (Alabama) – Accurate, poised and mobile, Young is the complete package.

Adams Pick 1: Spencer Rattler (South Carolina) – The main knock on Rattler is that he lost his starting job to Caleb Williams at Oklahoma. Well, the SEC East features no Williams. Rattler displayed excellent accuracy at OU. He'll be the East's top QB.

Adams Pick 2: Hender Hooker (Tennessee) – A true dual threat, Hooker keeps defenses on their toes. He operates Josh Heupel's up-tempo offense to near perfection.

Toppmeyer Pick 2: KJ Jefferson (Arkansas) – Jefferson flies under the radar a bit, but he's poised for a monster season. He throws a good deep ball, and he's a bulldozing runner. He'd be the perfect complement to Young.

Toppmeyer Pick 3: Will Rogers (Mississippi State) – Speaking of flying below the radar, I bet you didn't know Rogers ranked third nationally in passing yards last season. Labeling Rogers a product of Mike Leach's air-raid system doesn't give him enough credit for his skills. He'd fit fine into any system.

Adams Pick 3: Jaxson Dart (Ole Miss) – Lane Kiffin knows quarterbacks. If Kiffin thinks Dart, the Southern Cal transfer, is worthy of being an SEC starter, I'm willing to trust that judgment.

Adams Pick 4: Max Johnson (Texas A&M) – Johnson showed moments of promise at LSU but didn’t have enough support around him or good enough pass protection. His talents will blossom with the Aggies.

Toppmeyer Pick 4: Myles Brennan (LSU) – Time to roll the dice with my final pick. Brennan is as veteran as they come. He flashed his talent in the first three games of the 2020 season but hasn't played since, due to injuries. I'm banking on Brennan going out with a bang.

Left to right: Hendon Hooker, KJ Jefferson, Will Rogers and Spencer Rattler

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Later in the episode

  • Toppmeyer selects Arkansas as his sleeper team for the 2022 season, despite the Razorbacks' tough schedule. He likes the combination of Jefferson plus a strong crop of incoming transfers. Adams reminds Toppmeyer that Missouri was his sleeper for 2021, and the Tigers failed to live up to expectations.
  • Pressed to supply a sleeper team of his own, Adams offers South Carolina. He's doubling down on his bullish stance toward Rattler.

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Blake Toppmeyer is an SEC Columnist for the USA TODAY Network. John Adams is a senior columnist for the Knoxville News Sentinel. If you enjoy their coverage, consider a digital subscription that will allow you access to all of it. You can also subscribe to their podcast, SEC Football Unfiltered. They also host a podcast focused on Tennessee football, The Volunteer State.

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