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Cody Kessler | Quarterback

Team: USC Trojans
Age / DOB:  (22) / 5/11/1993
Ht / Wt:  6'1' / 215

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USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler "consistently shows very good anticipation and accuracy on short-to-intermediate throws", writes ESPN's Todd McShay.
The Trojans' 6-foot-1, 215-pound redshirt senior lit up Arizona State for 375 yards, five touchdowns and an interception on Saturday. "I was really impressed with Kessler's football IQ when I met with him prior to the Stanford game, and even though USC lost that game, Kessler still played well (3 TDs, 0 INTs, 94.8 adjusted Total QBR)," McShay wrote. "Quick side note: WR JuJu Smith-Schuster has made Kessler's life a lot easier this season. The true sophomore has 6 TDs already in 2015 and might be the most talented WR in college football." Kessler ranks second in the nation in pass efficiency. Sep 29 - 4:04 PM
Source: ESPN

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USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler currently ranks second to only Baylor QB Seth Russell in terms of pass efficiency.

Russell's logging a 218.9 rating while Kessler clocks in at 201.2. The Trojans' 6-foot-1, 215-pound redshirt senior leader is coming off a stellar performance against Arizona State in which he completed 19-of-33 passes for 375 yards, five touchdowns and an interception. Incidentally, that interception was the first he's thrown this season. While Russell might have him beat in terms of the raw numbers, Kessler has faced far, far tougher competition to this point. He'll get a rest this weekend before playing host to Washington on October 8.
Source: LA Times
Sep 28 - 6:03 PM

USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler completed 19-of-33 passes for 375 yards, five touchdowns and an interception in Saturday's 42-14 win over Arizona State.

Kessler's two main targets were Adoree' Jackson and JuJu Smith-Schuster, who combined to catch 234 yards' worth of his 375 on the evening. Four of his five touchdown passes came before halftime, as the Trojans bolted out to a 35-0 lead before hitting the locker room for orange slices. The interception was the first the 6-foot-1, 215-pound redshirt senior's thrown this season and just the 13th he's thrown over two-plus years as a starter. Through four games in 2015, he's logged 1,297 passing yards with a 15/1 TD/INT ratio. USC hosts Washington next weekend.
Sep 27 - 2:55 AM

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. believes USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler's draft stock is in the "first-round mix."

In the off season, Kiper noted that Kessler "lacks elite physical tools, but his anticipation and accuracy are ahead of the pack." Kiper ranked Kessler his No. 2 senior quarterback going into the season, right behind Michigan State's Connor Cook.
Sep 25 - 3:16 PM

ESPN's Todd McShay reports that all three of USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler's scoring passes against Idaho came on throws that traveled over 20 yards.

Deep ball accuracy was the biggest criticism of Kessler coming into this season outside of his frame (which he cannot improve), so early returns are promising. "Stanford is a different animal, though," McShay wrote. "The Cardinal's defense has allowed just 3.6 net yards per pass attempt so far this season, ninth overall in the FBS. Kessler will need to be at his best to continue his efficient play." The 6-foot-1, 215-pound senior has a 46/5 TD/INT rate since the start of last season.
Sep 18 - 9:28 PM

USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler completed 26-of-31 passes for 410 yards and three touchdowns in Saturday's 59-9 romp over Idaho.

The Vandal defense was no match for Kessler, who did most anything he wanted in the cruise to victory. Two of the three touchdowns went to the electric JuJu Smith-Schuster on passes of 50 and 41 yards. We don't want to take anything away from Kessler's performance here, but Idaho remains Idaho. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound senior was like a cat playing with a possibly-already-dead mouse. He'll have to combat live prey next week, as USC faces its first real test of the season in a home showdown with Stanford.
Sep 13 - 3:51 AM

USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler completed 19-of-26 passes for 236 yards and four touchdowns in Saturday's 55-6 win over Arkansas State.

It took Kessler one minute and 14 seconds to put the Trojans on the board. He did it in loud enough fashion, hooking up with JuJu Smith-Schuster on a 61-yard catch-and-run score. He would go on to throw a 14-yard touchdown as the quarter came to a close, plus two more over the course of the next two quarters as USC pulled away for the victory. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound redshirt senior has been compared to Drew Brees for his ability to perform at a high level despite the lack of a huge arm. Last season, he threw for 3,826 yards (69.7 completion percentage) with a gaudy 39/5 TD/INT ratio.
Sep 6 - 2:39 AM

NFL Media draft analyst Gil Brandt wrote that USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler "reminds you of Drew Brees in college."

In an ongoing countdown of the Top-20 players in college football by, Kessler joins the party at No. 13. Draft analyst Brandt called the 6-foot-1, 215-pounder "very smart, very accurate," while fellow expert Bucky Brooks said that Kessler "might lack the big arm that scouts covet, but there isn't a better game manager in college football." He completed 69.7% of his passes last season, good for 3,826 yards and a 39/5 TD/INT ratio.
Aug 29 - 4:36 PM

TFY Draft Insider Tony Pauline compares USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler to Mark Sanchez.

He means it as a compliment. "That’[s] not a knock as I believe if Kessler is used correctly, unlike the way Sanchez was during much of his career with the New York Jets, he can start and be a successful signal caller on Sunday," Pauline wrote. "Kessler is an accurate passer who does not make mental errors but has size limitations." Pauline graded Kessler as a Rds. 2-3 prospect. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound Kessler threw for 3,826 yards (8.5 yards per attempt) on 69.7 percent completions with a 39/5 TD/INT ratio last year.
Aug 22 - 8:07 PM

ESPN's Phil Steele says USC redshirt senior Cody Kessler is the best Heisman contender in the nation.

"The previous five Heisman Trophy winners were all quarterbacks," Steele wrote. "If you average out their Heisman-winning seasons, they threw for about 300 yards per game and had a 68.9 completion percentage with a 36-7 TD-to-INT ratio. Kessler's numbers last season were: 294 ypg, 69.7 percent with a 39-5 ratio. It also doesn't hurt to have all five starting offensive linemen back, as well as several weapons at receiver and tight end." The 6-foot-1, 215-pound Kessler also averaged 8.5 yards per attempt on 69.7 percent completions.
Aug 16 - 5:46 PM

Pro Football Focus graded USC redshirt senior Cody Kessler as the clear top returning QB in the FBS.

Kessler is in a tier of his own, according to PFF's grades, with Cal's Jared Goff behind. The grades then become very similar, with WKU's Brandon Doughty, TCU Trevone Boykin and Clemson's Deshaun Watson round out the top five. Kessler is very successful in USC's offense since he handles a pocket very well and will work to multiple reads and levels of the field. As previously blurbed, Penn State's Christian Hackenberg was graded as PFF's worst quarterback in the FBS.
Aug 10 - 12:26 PM

USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler is a "smart, accurate player who avoids mistakes and reliably gets the ball in the hands of USC's ample playmakers," notes Sports on Earth's Matt Brown.

"For how many times Kessler has been called underrated, maybe he still is somehow underrated," Brown wrote. "With a better offensive line, Kessler is poised for a big senior season." He pegs Kessler as the No. 14 college football player in the country. The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder completed 69.7 percent of his attempts and threw for 3,826 yards (8.5 yards per attempt) with a 39/5 TD/INT ratio last year.
Aug 9 - 8:58 PM

CBS Sports Rob Rang believes USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler is a "good - not great - NFL prospect because of some physical limitations."

"The fact that the talent around him and scheme in which he's enjoyed such great success have inflated his production," Rang wrote. The USC prospect passed for 3,826 yards and 39 touchdowns, while throwing just five interceptions, completing 69.7 percent of his attempts in 2014. Kessler will have to prove to scouts this season, that he's more than a product of the system.
Source: CBS Sports
Aug 5 - 2:31 PM

USC coach Steve Sarkisian isn't concerned about his players getting overconfident following the media choosing the Trojans to win the Pac-12 in 2015.

"It's somewhat of a beauty contest right now," Sarkisian said. "I really don't think our guys are concerned with it." Oregon has won four of the last six Pac-12 titles, but of course lost Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota (amongst others) while the Trojans return three-year starter Cody Kessler (amongst others). "We don't need all the cameras and we don't need all the spotlight," sophomore linebacker Su'a Cravens said. "That comes with USC, but we don't need it. I think that's what makes us great."
Jul 31 - 9:25 PM

USC redshirt senior QB Cody Kessler said he returned to school to win the national title.

"I didn’t come back to win a Heisman or be an All-American, as nice as those honors are," Kessler said. "I came back because I’m tiring of losing four games a year. I came back because I wanted to win a Pac-12 title, a national title. I really think this could be that year. We could be the team to do that." Reminded that Matt Barkley said just about the same thing a few years back, Kessler stressed that the Trojans were realistic about the work it will take to achieve such a goal. "How could we be [overconfident]?" he said. "The last two years have been ... humbling." Kessler boasts a pristine career 59-12 TD/INT rate. "It’s to the point now where everyone feels like it’s done," Kessler said of the adversity that defined much of his first four seasons at USC. "It feels like we’re back."
Jul 26 - 8:16 PM