Heisman Power Rankings: Jackson retains top spot, contested by fellow pivots

Heisman Power Rankings: Jackson retains top spot, contested by fellow pivots

The Score - NCAA Football

Week 6 provided a lot of interesting thought and discussion pertaining to the race for this season's Heisman Trophy.

Some of the popular candidates throughout the season were able to remain consistent and, in one particular case, reinsert his name into consideration, while a couple of dark horses have forced their way into the discussion.

5. Jabrill Peppers, LB - Michigan

Jabrill Peppers has become the first primarily defensive player to crack the Heisman Power Rankings this season. Peppers put forth a display on both sides of the ball Saturday during one of the most one-sided bloodbaths in recent memory as Michigan embarrassed Rutgers with a 78-0 trouncing. The junior made the most of his opportunities on offense, finding the end zone twice on three carries, totaling 74 yards, including a 63-yard run that set up the Wolverines' opening touchdown. Peppers' versatility has been largely unparalleled in college football, and is worthy of cracking this week's Heisman rankings.

4. Deshaun Watson, QB - Clemson

The preseason favorite to take home the Heisman, Deshaun Watson returns to the rankings after a somewhat slow start considering the hype surrounding him and the Clemson powerhouse. Taking on arguably the best defense from a year ago in Boston College, Watson picked apart the Eagles on 14-of-24 passing for 266 yards and four passing touchdowns. Watson also added 28 yards on the ground on eight carries. Watson was able to add onto an impressive five-touchdown performance against Louisville in week five with another four touchdowns against Boston College without suffering an interception. While his ranking may only be at the fourth spot this week, continued performances like his previous two could cause some unrest higher up the list.

3. Dalvin Cook, RB - Florida State

After a slow start to the season, Florida State running back Dalvin Cook continues to light the field on fire with his performance as of late. The junior posted his third straight game of more than 200 all-purpose yards in Saturday's down-to-the-wire victory over Miami, scampering for 150 yards and hauling in a 59-yard touchdown catch. Having gone up against some of the top teams in the FBS this season in the forms of Ole Miss, Louisville, North Carolina, and Miami, Cook has proven he can dominate against basically any opponent, and is the week 6 favorite out of the backfield to take home the Heisman this season.

2. Jake Browning, QB - Washington

Another dark horse that emphatically cracks the power rankings for the first time this season is Washington gunslinger Jake Browning. Leading the charge in a very lopsided win over Oregon this week, Browning tied the all-time Pac-12 record with eight touchdowns, six passing and two rushing, against the crumbling Ducks. While Saturday's performance may have been spectacular, Browning has been picking apart defenses all season long without giving much of anything up in return. The sophomore currently leads all FBS quarterbacks in touchdown passes with 23 as well as QB rating with 204.9, while only offering up two lowly interceptions through the first six weeks. If Browning can continue to lead Washington through an undefeated season while putting up these kinds of numbers, not even the sky will be the limit.

1. Lamar Jackson, QB - Louisville

For the fifth straight week, Louisville's Lamar Jackson sits atop the Heisman Power Rankings despite the Cardinals enjoying a bye week this past game day. Before the season began, Jackson was a relative unknown, throwing for just 1,840 yards last season with 12 touchdowns. Jackson already has 14 passing touchdowns through five games, which would be impressive enough without mentioning his 14 rushing touchdowns. The Heisman is essentially Jackson's to lose at this point, and if the pivot continues to post 100-yard rushing games (he only has one sub-100-yard rushing game in five total games) to go along with his cerebral offensive efforts, Louisville may have its first ever Heisman Trophy winner.

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