Create Your Favorite Missouri Football Player: Quarterback

Missouri has a long line of players who have excelled in their respective positions and have individual traits that set them apart. You know, like the arm strength of Drew Lock or the athletic ability and quick twitch of a guy like Sheldon Richardson.

Which is a good starting point for this question: how would you build your ideal player? We will start this week with the defensive line.

The qualities of the best defensive lineman are divided into these categories:

  1. Athletics
  2. Skips the ability to dash
  3. Stroke stop capability

Athletics : Sheldon Richardson; 2011-2012

Sheldon Richardson came to Mizzou as one of the best junior college players in the country and it was immediately apparent that he was not a big space-eating defensive tackle. In fact, it was an athletic, flexible piece that could be used as a three-way technique or even occasionally bumped into the end. It made sense when you saw his first step and explosion out of the line of scrimmage. Few players weighing nearly 300 pounds could move as quickly or efficiently while maintaining the power of Richardson’s first punch.

He’s well known in Missouri for his 2012 comments about “adult football” and they may have looked bad at the time, but Richardson backed up his word with his game. led him to be a first-round draft pick.

Shane Keyser/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Pass Rushing Ability: Aldon Smith; 2009-2010

Aldon Smith was one of the standard setters for D-Line Zou with the way he rushed the setter. He was much more than a passing passer, but it was above all where he excelled. Smith had a unique blend of speed and cornering that made him one of the best pass rushers in the country. More than that, Smith was technically sound. He had a good mix of rushing passing moves and was always ready to switch to a secondary move if the first didn’t work. There are more than a few valid choices, but I think Smith was just so good.

Run-stopping ability: Terry Beckner, Jr; 2015-2018

When you talk about pure ability, Terry Beckner, Jr is one of the most talented players to come through Mizzou in the last 10-15 years. He’s one of the greatest rookies to ever sign at Missouri and he absolutely stood out, even as a true freshman. You could immediately see flashes of what made him such a popular prospect. With an elite first step and incredible power, he controlled the gaps as soon as he arrived on campus.

However, his impressive freshman season was derailed by a torn ACL. His second campaign also ended early with another ACL tear in his opposite knee.

For many players, it would be difficult to recover from two consecutive years of rehabilitation from major knee injuries. Coming back to the sport is an accomplishment in itself, but coming back and having the impact Beckner had over the next two seasons was even more impressive. In his final two seasons, he recorded 22 tackles for loss and 11.5 sacks. While receiving the majority of the offensive line’s attention.

I think my favorite part of Beckner’s game was the violent but quick use of his hands. A devastating club swing to eject the blocker and he was in the backfield.

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