The legend of Gardner Minshew II grew just a little bit more last night when the Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback led his team to its first win of the season, a 20-7 dispatching of the pedestrian Tennessee Titans on Thursday Night Football.
NFL fans had heard of Minshew after his excellent stint in relief of Nick Foles in week one and solid week two performance, but last night was the first chance for the country to truly get an up-close look at the former Washington State Cougars quarterback — and he did not disappoint, completing 20-of-30 passes for 204 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Minshew was poised, in command, and dropped some absolute dimes:
We're all living in a @GardnerMinshew5 world right now.— NFL UK (@NFLUK) September 20, 2019
His best throws from last night's @Jaguars win! pic.twitter.com/VgdiN8Kbkd
If only Dede Westbrook hadn’t dropped that pass in the end zone (2:20 in the video above), his final line would have included another 21 yards and another TD.
One of the most fun things about the rise of Gardner Minshew II as quarterback of the Jacksonville Jaguars is watching the entire country discover his existence — even though he was fifth in Heisman Trophy voting last year, it’s become clear that the Venn diagram of NFL fans and college football fans features a pretty thin overlap in the middle.
Take, for example, this interview with Scott Van Pelt on ESPN’s SportsCenter:
The smile says it all— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 20, 2019
Gardner Minshew talked with @notthefakeSVP following his first-career NFL win. pic.twitter.com/UBdMQwHu0K
And this interview postgame with NFL Network is so cool.
“Coming in and getting the win at home... you can’t beat it!”@GardnerMinshew5 enjoyed his first career win with his family— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) September 20, 2019
: #TNF Postgame on NFL Network pic.twitter.com/BbnI94AaYu
There’s also a slew of stories below. But there’s one thing all these new Minshew fans will never know: What Minshew’s brief time in Pullman meant to all of us. And why this sort of thing causes us to swell up with so much pride:
“That’s home to me.”— Jason Krump (@JasonKrump) September 20, 2019
See you Saturday, Gardner.
#GoCougs #Pullman #TENvsJAC #MinshewMania pic.twitter.com/IfUbcbPTNz
View from the O-Zone: “A big statement” - Jaguars.com
*Minshew may be for real. The rookie was dazzling early and poised late. He threw touchdown passes on the game’s first two drives and completed big passes later to keep the offense off the field in big situations. Nothing seems too big for him. That’s a good sign.
Mike Leach points out how poorly NFL scouts did with QB Gardner Minshew | Yardbarker
QB Gardner Minshew playing well as a rookie in the NFL is very much a feather in the cap of Mike Leach.
Minshew mania: Why fans rally behind the man, the mustache | firstcoastnews.com
Gardner Minshew has shined since stepping in for injured Jaguars QB Nick Foles, and he's already winning over fans.
The Rush: Did the Jaguars find Gardner Minshew in Area 51? [Video] - Yahoo.com
Gardner Minshew’s Contract: How Much Money Is His Salary? | Heavy.com
How much money does Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew make? We breakdown Minshew's salary and the contract he signed with the Jaguars.
NFL: Gardner Minshew is exactly what the Jaguars need - FTW
Jacksonville Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew is the perfect man to help turn around their season.
NFL: Gardner Minshew memes include comparisons to Uncle Rico - FTW
After the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Tennessee Titans, there were memes about the Napoleon Dynamite character and Dodgeball.
Gardner Minshew not surprised by his own success – ProFootballTalk
Some people are surprised that Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew, a sixth-round rookie thrust into the starting lineup by Nick Foles' injury, is playing so well. Minshew is not one of those people.
What we learned from Jaguars' win over Titans - NFL.com
Minshew Mania went prime time on Thursday night, as the rookie quarterback led the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-2) to a 20-7 win over the division-rival Tennessee Titans (1-2).
Minshew -- 'Gotta make the most of' opportunity - ESPN.com
Rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew picked up his first win as an NFL starter, leading the Jaguars to a 20-7 victory over the Titans on Thursday night.
Soccer wins again!
A business trip to Hawaii results in a 1-0 victory for WSU soccer. The Cougs dominated the match more than the final score line would indicate, putting 11 shots on frame to just two for Hawaii. It easily could have been more, but Hawaii’s keeper was doing stuff like this:
77' | Mo with the one-timer but hat tip to Mata with the big time save— Washington State Soccer (@WSUCougarSoccer) September 20, 2019
1-0 WSU#CougsVsEverybody | #GoCougs pic.twitter.com/m48QqVt2hd
Here’s the one that did get by:
HIGHLIGHT | Cougs taking advantage of the free kick once again, a pinpoint pass by Bri finds Shay for the goal#CougsVsEverybody | #GoCougs pic.twitter.com/0vXAsGkCd0— Washington State Soccer (@WSUCougarSoccer) September 20, 2019
The Cougs play one more match on the island, on Sunday against Pepperdine, before returning home to open Pac-12 play next weekend against Oregon State.
Defense Dominates, Whieldon Finishes - Washington State University Athletics
Shayna Whieldon scored in the 41st minute as the Cougs downed Hawai'i, 1-0, in Honolulu.
Hey there’s a WSU football game tomorrow
Triple-threat: Washington State must stop trio of the Pac-12’s best running backs to open conference slate | The Spokesman-Review
Gouged by the likes of Patrick Carr and Milo Hall the last two weeks, the Washington State Cougars’ front seven is about to face three of the best ball carriers it will see all season.
Graphic design whiz Andrew Cho has interesting conflict on tap as Washington State hosts UCLA | The Spokesman-Review
He won’t be the only Washington State undergraduate student watching Saturday’s Pac-12 opener, nor will he be the only person on UCLA’s Athletics payroll in attendance at Martin Stadium.
UCLA Football Preview: Washington St. Should Look Similar to Oklahoma - Bruins Nation
That’s because Oklahoma’s coaches are a part of the Mike Leach coaching tree.
UCLA Football Preview: Can Bruins Get Past the Washington St. Defense? - Bruins Nation
The Cougar defense isn’t ranked early as high as their offense—will UCLA will still have trouble moving the ball?
'This is just the beginning' for Cosmas Kwete, says WSU's Claeys - Cougfan.com
Twelve plays, three tackles, one fumble, how about that?!
Pac-12 Game of the Week: Can Utah break the Coliseum Curse? - The Washington Post
Utah hasn’t beaten the Trojans in Los Angeles in more than 100 years
WSU's record and Anthony Gordon predictions heading in to Pac-12 play | krem.com
Now that non-conference is over and we know more about the Pac-12, it's time to look back on our initial prediction of what WSU's record would be this season
Canzano: A dozen things you need to know about Pac-12 football - oregonlive.com
I had Washington State coach Mike Leach on the radio show this week. The podcast of the interview is worth a listen. His most passionate response came when I asked him about the possibility of 10 a.m. kickoffs at some juncture. It’s safe to say he doesn’t support it.