At the beginning of the season, Virginia Tech football coach Brent Pry named senior Grant Wells his starting quarterback, beating out Baylor transfer Kyron Drones. It was not a surprising decision and Pry even mentioned that they were plays in the playbook for Drones.
In the season opener against Old Dominion, Drones came in for some plays, then in Week 2 against Purdue, he came on with Virginia Tech trailing 24-17 in the fourth quarter after Wells suffered an ankle injury and the Hokies needed a scoring drive on their final possession to tie the game. The drive stalled out on downs in Purdue territory, but the foundation was laid.
Drones started the final 10 games for Pry and after a rocky start in his first games at Rutgers and Marshall, he turned things around over the final eight weeks and was a big reason why the Hokies rebounded from a 1-3 start to become bowl-eligible. ESPN graded 50 transfer quarterbacks for the 2023 season and the grade they gave Drones is nearly perfect.
ESPN gives Kyron Drones a perfect grade
At the midway point of the season, Drones got a C from ESPN, but after the final six games and a bowl victory, he got a B+ which is the perfect grade for him after he threw for 2,084 yards, 17 touchdown passes, 818 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns. Against Tulane in the Military Bowl, he rushed for 176 yards in the rain in the 41-20 victory.
What makes Drones tough is the confidence he got throwing the ball really opened things up for offensive coordinator Tyler Bowen and then he became a dual-threat running the ball. His 6-foot-2, 234-pound frame was tough for opposing defenses to tackle and there were times he would pick up yards well after first contact.
There is no reason to think that if Drones stays healthy that his letter grade won’t move up a letter in 2024. He might not be the best quarterback in the ACC, but he certainly can take Virginia Tech to the next step next fall.