Thursday, January 27, 2011

Who's Casting a Shadow, Murray or Bray?

This already seems to be an off season topic du jour: who is the better QB, Georgia's Aaron Murray or Tennessee's Tyler Bray?

In his SEC Showdown piece, I think Jon over at SaturdayDownSouth hits on all sides of the argument, but doesn't drive home the real point - Murray has the more definitive body of work, based largely on the fact that he entered the 2010 season a year ahead and the natural successor at quarterback. Murray played in just four more games, but had a whole extra year to absorb the offense.

No, I'm not trying to make an argument for the HillBilly. Just saying his hill was steeper from the start with a change in coaches while he was unpacking his dorm boxes and only 8 months to prepare versus Murray's twenty.

Regardless, I wanted some more numbers to look at, so I went to cfbstats and grabbed these to stir into the argument.

Total Offense
GRush YardsPass YardsPlaysTotal YardsYards/PlayYards/G

Aaron Murray

Total Offense
GRush YardsPass YardsPlaysTotal YardsYards/PlayYards/G

So to make matters worse for Bray, Jon inflated Murray's rushing stats more than a bit, 358 yards as opposed to the actual 167. So when I saw the discrepancy between the piece and cfbstats I checked another source and came up with 167 rushing yards as well.

Anyway, these two SEC signal callers are ultimately going to be judged by their success on the field which depends on their arms more than their feet. And I agree that Murray has a slight edge in these statistical areas: yards/attempt, yards/game, rating and perhaps most importantly the TD/INT ratio. Murray had 3 touchdown passes to each interception while Bray only had 1.8.

Roughly speaking, I think you can use the yards/att and yards/game to determine how well each is reading the field while the rating gives an indication of overall performance. Murray rates slightly to fairly significantly better in each. But when push comes to shove, the TD/INT ratio is the best indication of a quarterback's decision making. And this is especially important with freshman quarterbacks. A nearly 2 to 1 advantage is nothing to sneeze at.

Overall, both are great QBs with great skills and are well coached. Murray rated out better during their freshman campaigns. But looking forward, it will ultimately be the players around them that determine who comes out on top each Fall.


Ollllddude said...

Just speculation, but the difference in the rushing stats might be looking just at yards gained as opposed to yards gained minus sack yardage. Jon may not have subtracted the sacks which I believe the official records do.

A said...

A qb with the ability to move the chains on his own running ability if the pocket breaks down is what an SEC qb has to be able to do. Murray is fairly stout. When I look at Bray(Slim) I think somewhere... sometime.... someone is gonna put a hat on him and then its time to put the back up in. If Bray would have played for us in that Auburn game I don't think he would have played in a bowl game afterwards. All that gesturing, posturing that he did during his bowl will only distract him and encourage someone to light him up. I recall a certain GT qb that did that during a UGa/Tech game and he didn't finish the game. Still he has potential but he is young and immature.

Bernie said...

I think you're right Ollllddude most likely.

@A You raise a good point. Going into the season my only true concern was Murray's health. He had that leg injury his senior year and it really hadn't been SEC tested until the start of the season. Since QB is slowly poised to become one of our deeper positions, I'm eager to see how much leash they give Murray to thrive.

Dawgfan17 said...

I love Murray and think the sky is the limit for him as a qb and as a team leader. The biggest area with room for improvement for him is throwing the deep ball. He gets it to the receiver but is often a half second late/a yard or two short so that the wr has to wait on it instead of catching it in stride. It hurt us in several games where guys would have scored td's instead of being tackled right after the catch. We settled for fg's or didn't score at all after several of these. If Murray can put a few more yards under the ball or anticipate these throws a second or two earlier(i.e. throwing the receiver open on the deep ball instead of waiting for him to already be open) then there will be very, very little in his game that he is not great at.

Anonymous said...

Aaron Murray is great throwing 24 TD passes.

Then, I go look it up.

19 TD passes vs 7 teams all who did not finish in the Top 25.
5 TD passes in all the other 6 games combined (3 of those 5 in a blow-out loss.)

For the season, he is 6-7 as a Starter (compared to David Greene) and beat 6 teams who all 6 have a losing record.

Since that does not impress me; I say it.

# 62 at being sacked
# 56 Total Offense
# 55 on 3rd Down Conversions
# 72 on getting 1st Downs

Call me whatever name you want to call me, but my facts are there looking you right in the face. If you have that agenda, squirming in your seat reading the facts, you do what ? Personal Attack ?

I just say, excuse me. That personal attack, flame, makes it clear that you have no retort to the fact that

Aaron Murray had 87 rushes for 167 yards
Aaron Murray had 342 passes

814 plays as a team for Georgia on Offense
429 plays ball hog Aaron Murray called his own number

52 nearly 53 percent of the plays, Aaron Murray either kept the call played from the sidelines and called his own number in the huddle, or he checked out of the play from the sidelines and called his own number.

He is 4.7 in the 40-yard dash, slower than most SEC Defensive Linemen.

He is small. Once we see 6' 2" Christian LeMay standing beside him on sideline, will know how small. It is no where near 6’ 2” I know that.

Aaron Murray was our best football player all season long. Our top recruit is Christian LeMay. He will not get a snap 2011, 2012, or 2013.

Bernie said...

@Anon What the hell personal attack are you referring to?

And this - "814 plays as a team for Georgia on Offense
429 plays ball hog Aaron Murray called his own number"
- are you kidding me? He's the quarterback! The position in itself is designed to touch the ball that often.

BuLLdawg said...

Then, why are we

# 72 in the nation in 1st Downs

# 56 in the nation in total offense

# 55 in nation in 3rd Down Conversions

# 62 in nation in getting sacked

If it is fine for Aaron Murray to call his own number 53 percent of all offensive plays where he either throws the ball or runs the football himself, then why all these categories where we

SUCK on offense ?

Why did he beat only 6 teams all 6 with losing records ?

Dawgfan17 said...

I will take you at your word that Murray had 53% of the plays for the offense where he threw or ran. Given that the offense had 3151 yards passing and 1854 rushing ( for a total of 5005 yards. Murray had 3049 yards passing and 167 rushing. This means while accounting for 53% of the plays he had 64% of the offense. Maybe just maybe if running game had not been so up and down throughout the season the freshmen(possible he might get better as EVERY qb under Richt has in their second year starting)might have won more than 6 games this year. He had two games that you can put on him for losing, the UF and to an extent the UCF(which no one on offense showed up for). As for Bray he benefited from only starting for UT once they got through the tough part of their schedule.