COLUMBUS, Ohio — Cardale Jones has heard the comparisons, and he has been on the same field working out with the next Ohio State quarterback who supposedly can match his arm strength.
Are there some similarities between Jones and Dwayne Haskins? The man known as “12 Gauge” thanks to the artillery attached to his right shoulder admitted there are plenty — at least to a point.
When it comes to pure power, Jones isn’t ready to put the presumptive next starter at Ohio State in the same category with him.
“No, man, he knows better,” Jones told Land of 10 with a laugh. “He knows what’s up, and I’ll leave it there.”
So, there were no head-to-head battles to see who could launch a football the longest this spring, but Jones has spent time this offseason working out with Haskins and Joe Burrow.
The three of them threw together several times ahead of the hotly anticipated quarterback battle that is expected this spring, which gave Jones some flashbacks to his own scrutinized competition at Ohio State with J.T. Barrett in 2015.
He has been around campus to lend advice to Barrett ahead of his pro day and even volunteered to snap to him during his on-field workout. And he also has been able to get an up-close look at the guys vying to take the baton to the Ohio State offense from Jones, who led the team to a national championship, and from Barrett, who set a number of Ohio State and conference records.
And for Jones, it is not just Haskins who brings some similar traits to the table for the Buckeyes this spring.
“I’ve thrown a couple times with both those guys. I kind of caught the beginning of the first practice, and I’ve just been around watching a little bit,” Jones said. “Dwayne is a bigger guy who can kill you in the pocket and down the field, and he can run when he needs to run. Definitely there are some comparisons there. But Joe is almost damn-near identical, and he’s freaking pinpoint with his accuracy and stuff like that.
“Both Dwayne and Joe are kind of lighting it up right now. Both of them are learning from each other’s mistakes, and you can tell because for the most part they both get reps with the ones and twos. I’m looking forward to the battle because you’ve got two great quarterbacks who, in my opinion, are pretty much the same player.”
One of them has to win the job, of course.
And while Jones is a believer in both, he is not willing to give up his crown as Ohio State’s strongest arm anytime soon.