On Friday night, two of the top quarterbacks in the 2022 class will be on display on GameTime on YurView.
Chaparral’s Brayten Silbor and Queen Creek’s Devin Brown will be going head-to-head in the 6A State Quarterfinals.
Both quarterbacks stepped into big roles in the state’s largest division as sophomores and are now solidifying their place even more in 6A.
Silbor stepped up when Chaparral starting quarterback Jack Miller was out with an injury, while Brown got his shot five games in to the season due to the transfer rule.
Last season, Brown had 1,319 yards with 10 touchdowns in eight games. He helped lead the Bulldogs to the 6A State Semi-Finals.
Silbor had 1,129 yards, 11 touchdowns in five games in 2019.
“They have similarities in that they are both labeled pocket guys, but they both have an ability to make plays outside of the pocket too,” Chaparral head coach Brent Barnes said of the comparison of the two juniors.
“When you talk about just simply of throwing the football, they’re both really, really good at it, but they’re also I think underrated a little bit in their ability to make plays whether it’s on the run or outside the pocket,” Barnes said.
This season, Brown has 1,689 yards and 18 touchdowns in eight games while Silbor has 1,607 yards and 14 passing touchdowns along with four rushing touchdowns, in five games.
Brown is rated as the No. 10 overall athlete in Arizona and the No. 34 pro-style quarterback in the 2022 class by 247Sports.
Throughout this year, Brown has focused on his composure more.
“Last year I made a lot of mistakes,” Brown said. “Being able to stand back there and be calm in the pocket with poise and make all my reads, I think that’s something that every quarterback can improve on every year. I really think that’s my main focus.”
Brown’s improvements in his leadership ability and in his athleticism have stood out to Germaine over the course of this year.
“A lot of times, the number one guy is open, but when that’s not open, he’s able to keep his poise, not bail, shift his eyes and his feet and find number two, find number three while he’s still in the pocket and get to those guys,” Germaine said. “I think (that) is going to be a big deal at the next level.”
— Devin Brown (@dbrownqb33) September 19, 2020
Brown was offered by USC on Sept. 1 and committed by the end of the month.
“There’s a big tradition there at USC, especially being a quarterback,” Brown said. “Once they offered me and I sat down with my family and my coaches, over time we knew it was the right decision for me.”
Brown was in contact quite a bit with current USC quarterback Kedon Slovis throughout his recruitment, he said.
Slovis graduated from Desert Mountain in Scottsdale in 2019 and stepped up big for the Trojans as a freshman. This season Slovis has helped lift the Trojans to a 3-0 record so far in 2020.
While Silbor is still waiting on his first offer to play at the next level, he’s spoken with several schools including Colorado, Louisville, Maryland and Air Force.
“Since we couldn’t play (coaches) would ask me questions about what I’ve been doing,” Silbor said. “A couple wanted to watch our first game against Saguaro, which I was so excited for that game, but we’ve kept in touch by texting and a couple calls here and there.”
Silbor has continued to improve and develop this year, Barnes said.
“When he’s seeing things clearly, making right decisions and putting the ball where it’s supposed to be, I don’t think there’s anybody better,” Barnes said. “I think what he’s done the last few weeks is he’s made better decsions and taken a little bit better care of the football.
“On Friday night, he’s going to have to stay patient and make the throws that are there and not try to force the action.”
— Brayten Silbor (@BraytenSilbor) November 12, 2020
Jack Miller, who Silbor backed up in 2019, is now playing at Ohio State and was a top recruit in the 2020 class. When Miller went down with an injury, everyone was dialed in to see how his backup would do, and Silbor didn’t disappoint.
“(Miller) taught me so much,” Silbor said. “I asked him when we played Chandler, ‘Are you nervous?’ and he said no, in a couple years I’ll be playing against guys better than Chandler and I just looked at him like that’s true.
“He always tried to find positivity in everything we do, so we’re playing Chandler, they’re No. 1 in the state and he said they’re just high school football players too.”
With all of the challenges that have been thrown at Silbor and the Firebird program, Silbor feels that using Miller’s mindset has been beneficial in dealing with the uncertainty and staying patient.
“You can’t change anything, what you’re given you have to work with,” Silbor said. “If you’re playing a team that’s bigger, faster, and stronger that doesn’t mean that they’re going to win. That’s why we play the game.”
The Chaparral Firebirds (3-2) take on the Queen Creek Bulldogs (6-2) in the quarterfinal round of the 2020 AIA State Football Championships (Conference 6A) – Friday, November 27 at 7:00 pm MT/8:00 pm CT.