Published January 2, 2013 - 10:20am
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Georgia junior quarterback Aaron Murray has put up crooked numbers ever since he set foot on campus in Athens, and he added another MVP trophy to his already filled case after yesterday’s record-setting Capital One Bowl performance against Nebraska. The only thing he lacks, though, is what he covets the most – an SEC Championship.
Murray is faced with a demanding and difficult decision over the next couple of weeks. Will he return for his senior season to make another run at the elusive trophy, or will he jump to the NFL and try to accomplish a new task at a much higher level?
Murray is fresh off torching Nebraska’s top-rated pass defense, completing 18 of 33 passes (54.5 percent) for 427 yards and five touchdowns – a Capital One Bowl record. He made his two first-half interceptions an afterthought after his nasty second-half performance. The most important and impressive statistic was his 11 for 14 for 246 yards and two touchdowns on third down.
In the midst of being the only SEC quarterback to ever throw for three 3,000-yard seasons, the knock, however, still remains with Murray’s inability to win games against top ten opponents. He silenced some critics with victories over top 25 Nebraska yesterday and top five Florida earlier in the season.
However, the looming question remains for Murray about whether or not he’ll return for his senior season at Georgia.
The Bulldogs’ defense likely loses nine of 11 starters. We know the unit will take a step back talent-wise. They did underperform throughout the season when compared to the high bar that was set in ‘11, but a ton of talent will still be gone. However, receiver Tavarres King is really the only impact player on offense who will be lost. The Bulldogs return all five starters on the offensive line, two stud freshmen tailbacks and a core group of receivers, including two tight ends. This unit would put up some serious numbers next year with Murray at the helm.
What Murray lacks in size at only 6-1, he makes up for in smarts, experience and arm strength.
Many NFL Draft scouts think Murray could be a serviceable NFL quarterback, but many teams will not make him a priority. He would benefit from another year at Georgia, but he could choose to make the leap and test the NFL waters.
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