Each season it seems we see quarterbacks go from almost completely unknown on a national level to on the radar of NFL scouts, and this year has been no exception.
Several QBs that had almost no name recognition before the start of the season are putting up huge numbers.
That said, we all know eye-popping statistics are not necessarily an indicator of NFL potential. So, is the success of these rising QBs tied to the system they play in or a result of NFL-caliber talent manifesting itself?
Here's a closer look at five of those signal-callers with that question in mind (players listed in alphabetical order).
Arizona State's Mike Bercovici
Taylor Kelly regained the starting QB job upon his return from injury last week, but Bercovici, an unheralded career backup, made quite an impression while filling in. In three starts, Bercovici went 92-of-146 for 1,243 yards and nine touchdowns. After throwing a couple picks in a loss to UCLA, he bounced back, going 10 consecutive quarters without being intercepted in leading the Sun Devils to two wins.
Bercovici might not have ideal size at 6-foot-1, 200 pounds, but he has shown he can make all the throws. He still has to overcome some system-QB stigma, but he has another year of eligibility and should take full advantage of it with Kelly, a senior, moving on.
TCU's Trevone Boykin
Boykin has finally settled in at a position after bouncing around from running back to wide receiver and finally to quarterback, where he's currently thriving. He threw for a school-record 433 yards and seven touchdowns in an 82-27 (yes, 82) win over Texas Tech last week. He's thrown for 2,306 yards and 21 TDs with just three picks this season and is second on the team in rushing with 374 yards.
He looks like he has more than enough arm strength, and I think he's a legit prospect with the way dual-threat QBs are hitting the league. He still has another year of eligibility remaining and should continue to grow in the position, as he's still very young in terms of his career as a QB. He's dynamic and impresses me more and more each time I see him.
Alabama's Blake Sims
Sims and Boykin are similar in that Sims also has played a different position, starting his career for the Crimson Tide at running back. He never gave up on his dream of playing quarterback and has really impressed this season, completing 131 of 200 passes for 15 TDs and just three picks while also rushing for 250 yards and five TDs (tied for the team lead).
Keep in mind -- Sims was never supposed to win the starting job. He seemed to be counted out from the start -- except by the coaching staff -- as FSU transfer QB Jacob Coker was hailed as the next big thing. Well, he didn't win the job, and Sims has held onto it, even after a bump in the road with a loss to Ole Miss. I think he's played some of his best football since then. I'm not ready to place Sims in the pantheon of great Alabama QBs, but he certainly has given scouts something to think about in what will be his first and only season at the helm of Nick Saban's offense.
Kentucky's Patrick Towles
Towles, a highly touted recruit out of high school, had to be patient, waiting two seasons (he redshirted last year) before becoming the Wildcats' starter and he's making the most of his opportunity.
He has tremendous size at 6-5, 238 pounds and is a big, physical player. He's assumed control of that offense and helped make Kentucky a very dangerous out in the SEC, as Mississippi State knows from experience. Towles had a career day against the Bulldogs, recording four TDs (two passing, two rushing), passing for 390 yards and rushing for 76. This is no system QB -- he's a dual threat, even at his size, and runs with some serious physicality.
West Virginia's Clint Trickett
Trickett started seven games for the Mountaineers last season but still wasn't a guy generating much, if any, buzz in the offseason. Now, some might say Trickett is too slight at 6-2, 186 pounds and just another system QB in coach Dana Holgorsen's offense, but there's more to Trickett than that. Sure, his size will give NFL evaluators pause, but there's no denying that Trickett is a tough player who bounces back from big hits and makes plays.
He transferred to West Virginia from Florida State before last season and is coming into his own in 2014, going 218-of-319 for 2,763 yards and 17 TDs with five picks through eight games.