The Kelly Bryant era begins in Missouri with high expectations, though their postseason future is in question as they await word on their bowl ban. Currently, they would not be able to play in the SEC Championship or a bowl. Even if they don’t go because of a penalty, Missouri has the potential of being a sleeper in the SEC East. Florida looked like a beatable team in their season opener against the Miami Hurricanes and didn’t show much to solidify a spot as the clear favorites.
They were up against a good Miami defense, but their offense was awful. Feleipe Franks looked lost on the field and failed to carry out basic plays for Florida. The former Clemson Tiger is primed to be the best quarterback in the SEC East. It isn’t like Bryant was bad for Clemson. He helped them win games last season before transferring.
Clemson just couldn’t afford to keep Trevor Lawrence on the bench. Lawrence is a generational player that doesn’t come around often. He is a shoo-in to be the top pick in the draft when he becomes eligible to play in the NFL. It was a good problem to have for Clemson, with Lawrence and Bryant both capable of starting games. However, it also was a given that Bryant was not going to be content with being a backup. He’s already proven he can be a starter.
Drew Lock left school for the NFL, so there was an opening at Missouri for Bryant. It’s a perfect offense for Bryant’s skill set. The Tigers are going to give him the freedom to pull it back and use his talented legs to pick up yards. Bryant went to a perfect team to put his talent on display for NFL scouts.
Not only is a nice fit, but he gets to put on in the best conference in football. Bryant and Missouri draw Wyoming in their season opener. Wyoming have some talent to replace, especially on defense, but we’ll see if they can surprise in the Mountain West. They’ve relied on their defense to win games recently. In any event, this is a nice early season test for the Cowboys. Head below for our free Missouri vs. Wyoming pick.
Missouri Tigers vs. Wyoming Tigers NCAAF Week 1 Betting Odds:
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Missouri vs. Wyoming Pick:
Despite possibly nothing to play for this season team wise, Kelly Bryant is playing for the most important goal of all. He will be looking to impress scouts at the next level. He isn’t a gunslinger like Drew Lock is, but what he makes that up with his rushing ability. Lock was a pure pocket passer, who operated best taking the snap out of the shotgun and sitting there and flinging the ball. Bryant is going to move around and keep Wyoming guessing. He plays a lot like a Cam Newton-lite.
The defense will be centered around linebacker Logan Wilson. He led the team in tackles and is garnering attention from the NFL already. Wilson is great and all, but he isn’t going to have a lot of help this season. Gone is standout defensive end Carl Granderson, who was the only pass rusher the team had in 2019. The Cowboys’ defensive line is going to be thin and small this season. Nose tackle Sidney Malauulu is not with the school any longer as well. Wyoming are going to get pushed around upfront against good offensive lines.
Missouri happens to have a very good offensive line and rushers. Three offensive linemen return and both running backs for Mizzou. Larry Rountree and Tyler Badie are going to be a load to handle for Wyoming in this contest. Rountree broke out late last season for 1,216 yards and is set to top that in 2019.
Badie provides the Tigers with a nice change of pace back. Combined with Bryant’s ability to run the ball, and the addition of wide receiver Jonathan Nance, this offense has the potential to be even better without Lock. Nance led Arkansas in receiving yardage in 2017 before transferring to Mizzou.
Look for Missouri to handle Wyoming at the line of scrimmage. Bryant is going to have all day to throw. Rountree likely puts up big numbers in this game as well. Wyoming doesn’t get an elite SEC defense in this game, but they’re going into this season without their two leading receivers from a season ago. Leading rusher Nico Evans is not at Wyoming, too. Starting QB, Tyler Vander Waal, is back, though he is beginning the season as a backup to Sean Chambers.
Chambers is more of a dual-threat option than Vander Waal. He is going to provide Wyoming with a more dynamic offense, but has zero starting experience. Chambers appeared in four games a season ago and didn’t attempt a pass. Wyoming used him as a runner, ultimately rushing for 329 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Expect him to take off often in this one, but the results are likely not going to be great against the Mizzou defense. The Tigers were underrated against the run last season. They allowed just 126.5 rushing yards per game in the SEC for 22nd in the nation. Missouri will throw a lot of experience at Chambers in this contest, including their entire secondary returns.
The air in Wyoming might be Missouri’s biggest enemy in this contest. However, this Cowboys team isn’t going to be able to take advantage. I locked this wager in at 14.5 two months ago and still like Missouri at -17.5. Look for a 42-21 win for the Tigers here.