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Virginia Football: Comparing Greyson Lambert and Matt Johns by the Numbers

Against FCS team Richmond, both Greyson Lambert and Matt Johns were successful in moving the ball downfield, with each quarterback leading Virginia to two touchdowns a piece. How do the numbers break down?

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

After a week of quarterback mystery and intrigue, Greyson Lambert earned the start, with Matt Johns working into the rotation on Saturday as the Hoos routed Richmond, 45-13. Even former starter David Watford, listed as behind both Lambert and Johns, was able to get some playing time in as it looked more and more certain that Virginia would be walking away with the win.

So how did the quarterbacks do? For the sake of this comparison, we'll be ignoring Watford's two drives at the end of the game and instead just look at Lambert and Johns, since at this point, it seems unlikely that Watford will be starting this season (though we've seen crazier things from this coaching staff).

Who Got More Playing Time?

Greyson Lambert

Drives: 4
Plays-Yards: 30-169
Time of Possession: 13:20

Matt Johns

Drives: 5
Plays-Yards: 22-122
Time of Possession: 8:23

Of Lambert's four drives, one was off an interception, one off a Richmond punt, and two off a Richmond kickoff. For Johns, two were off turnovers, one was off a punt and two were off a Richmond kickoff. Lambert averaged 5.633 yards per play, as compared to Johns's 5.545 yards per play.

Who Threw It Better?

Greyson Lambert

Completions-Attempts: 13-15 (86.67%)
Yards: 102
Yards Per Completion: 7.846
Longest: 29
Touchdowns: 1
Interceptions: 0
Sacks: 0

Matt Johns

Completions-Attempts: 4-7 (57.14%)
Yards: 65
Yards Per Completion: 16.25
Longest: 45
Touchdowns: 1
Interceptions: 1
Sacks: 0

From here, purely by the numbers, it would appear that Lambert has the edge, though Johns was able to flex his muscles a little more on the passing game. In addition to his 29-yard pass, Lambert also had two passes for double-digit yardage at 15 and 19 yards, respectively (23% completed passes for double-digit yardage). For Johns, in addition to the 45-yard long bomb to Darius Jennings, he also threw a 14-yard pass (50% completed passes for double-digit yardage).

Who Ran It Better?

Greyson Lambert

Number: 1
Yards: 10
Yards Per Rush: 10.0
Longest: 10
Touchdowns: 0
Fumbles: 0

Matt Johns

Number: 1
Yards: 12
Yards Per Rush: 12.0
Longest: 12
Touchdowns: 0
Fumbles: 0

No discernible difference here, although outside of the numbers, it appeared that Johns had better scrambling ability than Lambert did.

From these numbers, are you able to make any decisions on the quarterback situation at Virginia, based solely off the Richmond game? Our own Paul Wiley is adamant that Lambert should be the guy, noting that Johns's deep ball was made possible by Lambert consisting hitting underneath routes.

Virginia Head Coach Mike London seemed satisfied with the quarterback situation in his post-game presser.

"The quarterback situation worked out as planned," London said. "Grayson Lambert started. He has been the starter during the spring, summer and then August camp. It was good and he was productive. Matt Johns came in and he was productive. I was also happy to see David Watford come in towards the end of the game. We will look at the film. Moving forward, our situation is that the guys that are playing are the guys that are executing and performing, not just at quarterback, but at a lot of positions."

How are Lambert and Johns handling the quarterback rotation?

"We let the coaches handle that," Johns said. "When they called on us both, we were both ready, and we'll take it from there. It wasn't based off of what quarter it was. It was when the coaches were ready to put us in, then they would put us in."

But is he happy with the two-QB system?

"Absolutely. I think the coaches did a good job of putting us in when they felt it was a good time. We both got touchdown passes and at the end of the day we won. That's what really matters."

Lambert echoed Johns's sentiments.

"It was good. It was just like during practice. We've been rotating in practice. Whenever coach calls our number, we'll go in and try to execute to the best of our ability."

"We've roomed together all of camp and we're great friends," Lambert said of Johns. "The whole quarterback group is each other's biggest fans. We're just trying to help the team win."

Is this two-quarterback rotation sustainable? Or does a decision need to be made? If you think there needs to be a decision, how do you choose and who comes out on top?