Aaron Murray and regrets

Dial up this clip to about the :40 mark and watch Aaron Murray’s response to the inevitable question about whether it was worth it for him to come back to Georgia for his senior season.  There’s this almost imperceptible pause after he denies having any regrets about his decision to return, and you get the feeling it’s not because he’s uncertain about that but that he’s thinking about where his team was at the end of September and how it finished the regular season.

The other thing he clearly doesn’t have any regrets about is his improved play.  Injuries, the defense and special teams play may have robbed him of what could have been a special year, but he did what he could to overcome that.  And it’s good for Murray – and the coaches who had a hand in making him a better player – that others have taken note of it.

“I really gained a lot of respect for him this past year, the toughness that he showed, the leadership that he showed hanging in there when their team had no chance to win in games and just continuing to fight,” ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay said. “Keeping his team in games that they had no business remaining in with everybody that was injured around him.”

Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel and Murray are most ready to start Day 1 in the NFL, said Mayock, who said Murray probably will go in the third round.

“Murray, I thought probably knows how to play the position better than any quarterback in the draft,” Mayock said. “He’s got anticipation and timing probably because he’s had to since he was a young kid because he was never that big, overpowering arm quarterback. … Murray’s arm strength isn’t as good as you’d like it, but, man, accuracy, timing and anticipation, it’s what that position is all about. With the second and third rounders making it more recently, he’s all of a sudden been in a lot of conversations with a lot of teams about a potential starting quarterback.”

And then there’s Michael Elkon’s comparison.

… In a normal senior year, Murray’s numbers would have likely gone up, including his completion percentage. In Murray’s actual senior year, he was deprived of the chance of playing with just about every front-line running back and receiver on the roster and was left fending for his life as the last survivor in the platoon.

Murray started for four years, he played without massive advantages, and he wasn’t in a system that has a terrible track record at producing successful pro quarterbacks. If the NFL is a copycat league, then maybe its teams should look at the quarterback who just won the Super Bowl and pick the prospect with similar physical dimensions and college experience. Aaron Murray isn’t necessarily Russell Wilson, but there are a number of similarities, and the right team should notice those parallels.

I’m sure Matthew Stafford’s NFL career has been a good sales tool for Georgia on the recruiting trail, but Murray, who doesn’t have Stafford’s freakish right arm, has the potential to be an even better one if his game translates successfully to the next level.  Georgia, as we all know, doesn’t believe in promoting its best players for the Heisman, so, ironically, it may soon find itself talking up Aaron Murray’s game more than it did while he wore the red and black.

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82 Comments

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82 responses to “Aaron Murray and regrets

  1. Russ

    With the increased attention he’s finally getting, I’m surprised that he is still projected in the third round behind some obvious dead weight. Seems like the are a few teams tht know he could be a fit for them and are interested, but they’re all playing coy so they can get him cheap. Just bidness, I guess.

    • I agree Russ, I think teams are keeping mum on Murray so that he doesn’t jump up. Curious to see the flap when/if he goes higher than anticipated. I want to see which talking head chump says it is a bad call, because Murray is going to kill it in the NFL

  2. Murray doesn’t have Stafford’s cannon, but his arm isn’t weak. And he showed much better accuracy and touch on deep balls so his effective arm strength may be better.

  3. DawgPhan

    Arm strength if another of those dumb measures.

    The anticipation and timing are far more important. Everyone plays faster when the ball is moving.

    • William

      I’d say yes and no to that. Arm strength is important when you have to zip an Out Route. True anticipation and timing might mitigate the need for as much zip, but if things break down, you want to know they can zip it in there. Wilson made one such throw in the Super Bowl that blew me away as it looked more like a fastball than a pass. The LB had good coverage, but there was no chance to catch up to it.

      • DawgPhan

        Murray made that out throw all the time in college. For the amount of coverage arm strength gets it is the most important factor for completion in probably 1% of throws. Every other throw is completed based on timing, anticipation, and accuracy. I think that your example proves the point about arm strength.

        • William

          David Green had timing and anticipation, but not enough zip on his throws. I concede your point about Murray and his abilities. I was just pointing out that there is a reason behind the madness (so to speak).

  4. Macallanlover

    While I think Murray was the best all-around QB that ever played the position at UGA, there is just no way to forecast success for him playing the position in the NFL. Much of it will depend on who drafts him as that will impact who will coach him, which OL will protect him, which receivers will go get it, which RBs will give him a significant enough threat to keep secondary defenders honest, if his OC will give him the diversity necessary to keep defenses off balance, how quickly will be needed, etc. So mostly I just hope the football gods help him get drafted by the team that gives him the best shot at succeeding, and he has no control over that.

    But I am sure AM will be successful in life, and probably in football where he may have an even better career as a coach. I bet he was rated at the top of the knowledge scale by those who interviewed him.

    • DawgPhan

      shorter Macallanlover…

      Football is a team sport.

      • Mayor

        In a perverse sort of way it may work to Murray’s advantage to not be as highly rated as some other QBs (a mistake by those doing the rating IMHO) because those really bad teams who desperately need a QB will draft Manziel and Bortles and Bridgewater, etc. Let them get their heads bashed in because of lousy O-lines. With luck, maybe Murray ends up in NO Boston where he learns from a master for a couple of years before taking over as the starter himself. I am totally optimistic about Murray’s chances.

      • Macallanlover

        Broader than that, performance proves it is also an organization sport….and then there is Ol’ Lady Luck.

    • Bulldawg165

      Well, he’s not likely to be the number 1 overall pick so we at least know he probably won’t get stuck on the worst team.

      I feel a lot better about his chances than you do because there’s a lot more parity in the NFL in regards to surrounding talent.

    • Red Dawg

      Coach Murray……..does have a nice ring to it

  5. Terry

    Good points to the Murray side Senator.

    Beware propaganda. Here’s the other side of the story.

    Murray had 4 years to build his resume, and didn’t beat a team that finished in the top 10 until his Sr season (went 2-10 lifetime vs top 10)

    Was 5-15 vs teams that finished top 25.

    Was 1-4 in the post-season (0-2 in conference Championships, 1-2 in Bowls)

    If that’s what you want, he’s your guy..

    • Really? You’re counting games that happened 4(!) years ago when he played on a team that had a defense in transition and its best player suspended for 4 games. You’re blaming him for the fact that JHC didn’t knock the ball down in Auburn this year! Just ridiculous. Go be a fan of another team.

    • Murray had 4 years to build his resume, and didn’t beat a team that finished in the top 10 until his Sr season…

      You realize you just made my point, right?

      • DawgPhan

        Pretty sure his only reason for posting was to try and give in one more dig on Murray. He is really going to miss that about him.

      • I have a hard time holding that stat against Murray since it appears he was playing all those games 1 vs 11 and our D, OL, special teams, etc couldn’t be bothered to take responsibility for their part in any of those loses.

        • Terry

          Murray did win over 90% of his starts vs unranked teams, and built 70% of his stats against them, so you always have that to cling to.

        • Terry

          Murray had an all american punter
          all american field goal kicer
          all american returner
          7 guys on his 2012 defense went pro, and 7 guys on his 2010 offense went pro

          got any more excuses?

          • W Cobb Dawg

            I see your point. How can any team lose with all-Americans at punter and kicker! Let’s face it, you’e got a real gift for digging up the facts. Mark Bradley move over!

          • Mayor

            Don’t forget “long-snapper!”

          • Macallanlover

            Individual performers true, but how did the defensive unit work out? And I have forgotten, how many linemen were selected high in the draft? And how many times did the same OL start as a unit? Murray didn’t win, or lose, a single game as an individual, not one. When you realize how teams are inter-linked in football, get back with me. None of this says AM will succeed in the NFL, I just know what he contributed at UGA and how much his loss will mean.

    • charlottedawg

      And if we had a competent defense in 2013, Murray notches two more wins over top 10 teams.

    • Bulldawg165

      This is clearly a troll post. I’ll give you 4/10. The topic you chose was sure to light some fires, but your attack was way too obvious.

      • Terry

        I give you a 0/10 for content in your poist

        • AthensHomerDawg

          Not sure if you meant to criticize, flirt or compliment with your poist?
          Poist ?
          1.A myspace post so good it will make you moist.
          Oh my god that was such a poist!
          Poist
          2. a forum post with poise
          “that was a nice poist”

    • PTC DAWG

      Stay classy!

    • Mayor

      It will be unpopular and I hate to say it (well, maybe I don’t ) but those end of game losses in those big games weren’t because of Murray, they were because of CMR and/or Bobo. Don’t blame the kid for losses when the coaches choked.

    • Dawgfan Will

      /mdwm

  6. charlottedawg

    I’m not sure how much coming back in 2013 improved his draft stock which is the most relevant metric for whether a player should come back.

    That being said, I would have a hard time understanding how 2013 did anything except elevate the outside opinions of Murray including the NFL’s. I know Georgia fans hated it but there was a reason for the “big game” meme prior to this past season. Murray’s senior season completely put those notions to rest, first with incredible performances against South Carolina and LSU, then taking a wounded offense on his back and carrying it for the remainder of the season until his knew blew out.

  7. AusDawg85

    I am amused by the stark absence of the Murray haters who posted frequently on this blog about a year ago…some in particular stating he would not even be drafted and adamant that playing him last year was a waste of opportunity for us while needing to get Mason ready.

    Please continue to stay away…forever.

  8. Terry

    Can you imagine having 5 guys to throw to who would end up in the NFL?

    That was Murray in 2010, had AJ Green, Orson, Marlon, Tavarres, and Durham, and went 6-7 and didn’t beat a team who finished in the top 25.

    Also had a terrific O-Line that season.

    6-7 record with that kind of talent?

    • Do you remember that Green was suspended for 4 games when we lost 3 and wasn’t sufficiently conditioned for game 5 when he came back at Colorado? Terrific offensive line, really?

      • Terry

        5 NFL receivers and he goes 6-7 in 2010. All I’m saying. You got your excuses for every year why he didn’t win enough of the big games. He had AJ in the Bowl game in 2010 and couldn’t score a td. And yes, he had a super oline in 2010 & 2011, depending on whether you like size, experience, or NFL drafted Olinemen.

        Joe Cox in 2009 won his Bowl game, and took a loss less sacks with the same oline as Murray had.

  9. Terry

    I wonder if the broken leg, acl injury, being only 6 foot, throwing 40+ interceptions, and being sacked over 75 times, will also hurt him?

  10. Terry

    Joe Cox was only sacked 12 times in 2009. Murray had the same oline in 2010 and got sacked over 20 times.

    Murray was sacked 107 times in college. That’s a lot of immobility.

  11. 3rdandGrantham

    In defense of the UGA AD concerning not promoting top UGA players for the Heisman; in Murray’s case, he specifically stated last year that he did not want any publicity and didn’t want to be hyped up by the AD, as it would take focus away from the team and team goals.

    I’m not sure what happened with former players like AJ Green, Stafford, and the like, but I will defend the AD in this regard (which, admittedly, many times is hard to do given their seemingly myopic operations).

  12. Terry

    I bet Mettenberger is drafted as No 5 Qb, Murray drops to about No 10 Qb drafted.

    • Seriously, other than Murray’s agent, who gives a fuck?

      • Terry

        Be interesting to see if the NFL draft guys who vote with their dollars, pick Murray over Mettenberger, like Mark Richt did.

        It will tell UGA fans how good Richt is at selecting his Qb starters.

        He whiffed on Mettenberger.

        • You do realize Mett was kicked out of school, don’t you before the decision was made?

          • Terry

            I closely followed that story back in 2010, and Richt said after Mettenberger left, Murray owuld have been the starter regardless.

            We saw on the 2010 GDay, who was the more talented of the two, it wasn’t even close.

            • Mett didn’t give himself a chance to win the starting job because of what happened in Valdosta and especially the aftermath of it. You were probably also at every practice, film session, etc. and know collegiate QB talent better than a guy who has developed #1 picks, 2 Heisman winners, etc.

            • DawgPA

              Who won during their head to head battle this past year? Oh yeah.. that’s right! Go away troll!

              • Terry

                Mettenberger was No 1 in college on 3rd down conversions.

                He’s got a rocket of an arm, is 6’5”, he’ll be a stud in the NFL.

                That’s money in the NFL.

        • Terry

          When it comes to the NFL, Richt’s Qb’s don’t usually pan out past their college careers.

          This says the success was due to the offensive system, more than individual talent.

          You got Stafford, the rest were not successful in the NFL.

          • This says the success was due to the offensive system, more than individual talent.

            So you acknowledge there was success.

            • Terry

              Yes, some success, Murray won about 25% of his games vs top 25 and post-season, about 20% vs top 10 teams, and put up some solid INDIVIDUAL yards, td numbers.

              Unfortunately, this ain’t tennis or golf, it’s a team sport, where you’re measured by wins.

            • Terry

              You missed the point.

              Can you list all the Qb’s Mark Richt coached that went on to solid NFL careers?

              Crickets chirping.

        • “It will tell UGA fans how good Richt is at selecting his Qb starters.”

          Yes, it will.

    • You’re a Richt-hater, too, I bet.

    • PTC DAWG

      You are the Jackass of the day…congrats!

      • Terry

        Murray is very smart, he’ll make a great coach someday, but he’ll never do squat as an NFL Qb.

        Said that about Tebow too, and no one listened.

        Isn’t it small minded to call other who don’t prefer 1 sided propaganda names, what does that say about you?

        • Lakatos Intolerant

          Great call on Tebow! That one might put you right up there next to Kiper and McShay in predicting NFL success…

          In all seriousness, are you honestly that bitter about Murray’s time and perceived lack of success at Georgia that you’re willing to pull against him and cheer his every NFL failure so that you can come back to a college football blog and say “I told you so”?

          Or, did you set out with an agenda to stir up a pro-Georgia crowd to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside?

          Either way, it’s really, really sad.

        • Dank Jankins

          “Murray is very smart, he’ll make a great coach someday”
          Nothing wrong with that….average to good players turning into great coaches…Nick Saban, Mark Richt and Urban Meyer say Hi!!!

          Can you tell us how Mett performed in the bowl game against Clemson when LSU needed to throw to win?

          We know you like Mett. No need to bash an outstanding young man in Murray to make your point.

  13. I Wanna Red Cup

    I wish for AMnothing but the best. He beat out Mett fair and square. No coach with a brain picks a starter based on the performance of one G Day game. They look at film from every practice and every scrimmage. I believe our coaches know more about QB performance and who should start more than our expert fans who can spout out a few stats.
    And I will say that if any NFL team takes that QB from Va Tech over AM, then it is obviously run by a bunch of idiots.

  14. CannonDawg

    “Murray is very smart, he’ll make a great coach someday, but he’ll never do squat as an NFL Qb”

    I’m not sure I’d bet the college savings on that last line, whatever his not doing squat is supposed to mean. John Gruden and Tony Dungy seem to have a different view of Murray’s pro prospects. But what do they know, right? Murray came within one play of less than 10 yards of getting his team into the NC game against a ND team UGA would have beaten like the Iraqi Republican Guard. I know coming close isn’t the same as closing the deal, but what other UGA QBs have been in that same position since the 80s? Is the correct answer “None”? .

  15. Bazooka Joe

    Terry is an idiot, why do you even read his posts ? I tab past them until I get to someone else who might have something intelligent to say (good or bad).

  16. I Wanna Red Cup

    I really think Terry is the guy who argued that Washun Ealy was better than Herschell Walker because he broke his HS records and did better on 3rd and 4 plays running to his left against directional teams wearing green pants in the third quarter of night games.

  17. uglydawg

    When someone has a crush on another man, it often manifests itself in misplaced negative criticism.
    Any resemblence of this description to anyone posting on GTP is coincidental.

  18. DeputyDawg

    Terry, the trolling on this post was StinGTalk-worthy

  19. Russ

    Hey Terry, when Mett had that beard last season, did it itch your back?

  20. Debby Balcer

    Murray was chosen before McCarron and Mettenberger.

  21. Terry

    Ok, I was off on my draft prediction, I predicted Murray would be the 10th Qb picked, he was the 8th, pretty much nailed that one
    I (and Maylock) had Mettenberger as the 5th best Qb and he went 10th, was 5 spots off on that one.

    Murray will be battling for 3rd string backup 1 year from now, while Mettenberger will likely be stating 1 year from now for Tenn.

    Get back to me in a year, let’s talk then, even better in 5 years, and see if Murray’s the 2nd Qb to have a decent NFL career for a UGA Mark Richt Qb.

    Good for Murray, he surprised me by going 2 spots higher than I thought. But he’s deep behind more talented Qb’s at KC.

  22. Debby Balcer

    Spin it Terry you were wrong. No qualifying it with caveats now.