Ranking Mizzou Football’s Top 10 Players
After four weeks, Mizzou fans have gotten a good look at the football team. More specifically, fans have gotten a chance to see which players have made an impact and can become stars for the Tigers.
So which players are the best to don a Mizzou uniform this season? The following are the top ten Mizzou football players, based on how they have played up to this point in the season.
1. DT Sheldon Richardson
Despite receiving a ton of criticism early in the season, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson has been Mizzou’s most valuable player by far. Richardson struggled in the Georgia game after calling out the Bulldogs. Since that game, however, Richardson has been a terror for the opposing team’s offensive lines. The behemoth of a tackle has gotten into the backfield consistently and is maturing before our eyes. If Richardson keeps this play up, he will hear his name called early at the NFL Draft in April.
2. CB EJ Gaines
EJ Gaines might be one of the most underrated players in all of college football. No one ever talks about Gaines, but he might be the best cover corner in the SEC. When an opposing offense faces Gaines, they simply can’t throw to his side of the field because he shuts it down. This season, Gaines has also made an impact coming in and making tackles on running plays. Gaines might be quiet, but he is one of college football’s most complete cornerbacks.
3. WR Marcus Lucas
A casual fan might not realize this, but Marcus Lucas has been the best and most consistent player on Mizzou’s offense so far this season. Lucas didn’t get much playing time last season at a crowded position, but he has emerged as a number one receiver and breakout star this year through four games. Lucas leads all Tigers receivers in receptions, yards, and touchdowns. The wideout can get down the field vertically, but can also make a catch to keep possession with the Tigers. Whenever Mizzou needs a big play through the air, look for Lucas’ name to be called.
4. LB Will Ebner
Senior captain Will Ebner received an extra redshirt year at Mizzou after suffering a season-ending injury last year, and he has capitalized on his opportunity. Ebner has been all over the field for the TIgers this season, leading the team in total tackles and stopping opponents running games in their tracks. Whenever a player gets tot the second level against Mizzou, look for Ebner to be there to make the tackle for the Tigers.
5. RB Kendial Lawerence
Questions emerged when it was announced that starting running back Henry Josey would miss the entire season with an injury, but Kendial Lawrence has silenced the doubters and gotten the Tiger ground game going. Lawrence has emerged as a quality starter this season and has often been the difference-maker on Mizzou scoring drives so far this season. When offensive coordinator David Yost calls Lawrence’s number, the running back has made big plays and is the key to the Tigers success offensively for the rest of the year.
6. WR TJ Moe
While TJ Moe isn’t at the top of the Mizzou player power rankings, he is without a doubt the most reliable player on the team. Whenever the Tigers need an energy boost or a big play on offense, they can count on Moe to produce. Moe is a valuable safety blanket at receiver for the quarterback and you can always count on him to fight for the extra yards to help the team out.
7. S Kenronte Walker
Generally, safety is one of the weaker positions on the Mizzou football team, but Kenronte Walker has changed that fact this season. There weren’t many expectations for Walker heading into the season, but he has played very well and emerged as a leader of the Tigers secondary. The safety has knack for making big plays, including forced fumbles and bone-crushing tackles. Walkers biggest play, however, was his game-sealing interception at the goal line in the fourth quarter against Arizona State that ensured a Tigers victory.
8. RB Marcus Murphy
While Marcus Murphy is listed as a running back, his special teams contributions are what make him valuable to the Mizzou football team. Murphy might be the best punt returner in the country, leading all of college football in punt return touchdowns with three. His return touchdown against Central Florida last week was one of the main reasons why the Tigers were able to overcome a struggle and get the win. Murphy is an instant spark for the Tigers and fans have to think touchdown every time he touches the ball.
9. CB Kip Edwards
While EJ Gaines is the corner no one wants to throw to on the Mizzou football team, Kip Edwards has done an excellent job and has held his own on the other side of the field. No team has really thrown all over Mizzou and Edwards has been a major reason why. The corners biggest plays have been in the turnover department, where he has one interception and three fumble recoveries. Edwards has a nose for the football and his play has been a major contributor to the Tigers’ success. He did struggle with tackling against South Carolina, but then again, everyone did in that game.
10. LB Donovan Bonner
Of all the players on the Mizzou roster, Bonner has been the most pleasant surprise so far this season. There were literally no expectations for Bonner entering the season as he started out as a backup on the depth chart. However, injuries to Will Ebner and Zavier Gooden have caused Bonner to play and he has simply been outstanding. In fact, Bonner has forced the coaches to include him in a rotation at the linebacker position. Bonner has been a consistent tackler when playing this season, and he is deserving of a surprise spot on the Mizzou player rankings.