Penn State Football will enter 2023 with the highest expectations for the program since 2017, ranking in the top 10 and expected to compete for a spot in the Big Ten championship game and the College Football Playoff.
So, who are the top 3 players from the James Franklin era who would improve the 2023 Penn State Football offense and push the team even closer to a Big Ten and national championship?
Ranking The Top-3 Offensive Players from the James Franklin Era Who Would Put Penn State Football Over the Top in 2023
No. 3 – TE Pat Freiermuth
Although Penn State Football boasts a very talented tight end room for 2023, the top two tight ends in the room have a bit of a history with injury, with Tyler Warren and Theo Johnson both missed time in spring ball with undisclosed injuries.
Adding the top tight end in Penn State history in Pat Freiermuth would be a luxury at the position and give Penn State another weapon in both the passing game and running game, as Freiermuth excelled at run blocking.
In 2.5 seasons (Freiermuth missed 5 games in 2020 with an injury) Freiermuth tallied 1185 yards and 16 touchdowns for Penn State.
Freiermuth’s size, experience, and blocking ability would be fantastic to add in 2023 for Penn State.
No. 2 – WR Chris Godwin
Sticking at the same position of need, Chris Godwin was another big-time playmaker for Penn State Football.
Although Penn State has produced other productive wide receivers, like KJ Hamler, I went with Godwin in this spot because of his clutch ability through Penn State’s 2016 Big Ten Championship season.
In 2016, Godwin pulled in 11 touchdowns (second all time in a season for Penn State) and 982 receiving yards. Godwin’s 187-yard, two touchdown Rose Bowl performance probably made him leave Penn State for the NFL a year early, and also make him the exact big-time threat that Drew Allar and James Franklin would LOVE to add to the 2023 Nittany Lions squad.
Over three seasons, Godwin tallied 2421 yards and 18 touchdowns, making him an ideal player in both experience and explosive play ability to add to what should be a high powered 2023 Penn State offense.
No. 1 – WR Jahan Dotson
Penn State is also trotting out its best offensive line under James Franklin. While there are not many holes on the 2023 Penn State offense, James Franklin has mentioned that he would like to see better play out of the Penn State receiver room.
Bringing in Dante Cephas certainly helped fill an experience void in the room, and adding in a former Nittany Lion would send the room over the top. In the James Franklin era, no wide receiver has been surer handed or consistent as Jahan Dotson.
Over 42 games, including 38 starts, Dotson caught 183 passes for 2757 yards and 25 touchdowns. Dotson was as explosive as a receiver comes, owning 38 career receptions of 20 or more yards and six career touchdowns of 60 or more yards.
Dotson also racked up 11 career 100-yard games, second all-time at Penn State. Adding the amount of experience that Dotson would bring would greatly improve Drew Allar’s confidence as a first-year starter and would elevate the Penn State offense to an even higher potential.
James Franklin would gladly add any of these three players to the 2023 Penn State offense which could produce historic results with any of the three.
Drew Allar and company will look to prove that the addition is not needed this season as the 2023 Nittany Lions offense looks to take the Penn State team to heights not reached since at least 2016.