Aaron Murray on the offense, JT Daniels
HOOVER, Ala. – It’s a question Georgia fans have been asking for months: what will the Bulldogs’ offense look like this fall?
Former Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray believes he knows.
“I think it’s going to open up a lot more. With the receivers they have, with [Arik] Gilbert, with [Darnell] Washington, they’ve got talent at receiver. They’re not what Alabama was last year or what LSU was like the year before, but they’ve got good guys. They’ve got guys you can create some matchups with, and they’ve got a really good quarterback in JT Daniels. I think it’s going to be a lot more.”
That being the case, Murray suspects he knows what Monken will try to do. If so, opposing defensive coordinators are going to have a difficult time preparing for the Bulldogs.
“I think they’ll be open to more concepts and less mirror routes. Even if both guys on the outside run the same route, maybe the guy over the middle runs a deep dig,” Murray said. “I think you’ll see that, but you’ll also see a lot more full-field reads from JT, which really puts a lot of stress on defenses, and I think he’s able to handle that. It’s going to be a lot more open, a lot more gun, a lot more 11 personnel.”
Entering his fifth year as a color analyst for CBS, Murray is playing a dual role at SEC Media Days, one as a member of the assembled press, but also as a representative for the AFCA Good Works Team.
In Daniels, he likes what he’s seen.
“He’s a good kid, and he’s got his head on right, especially with all this NIL stuff. He said it’s great, my phone is getting blown up, I’ve got a bunch of deals, but my main focus is football.” Murray said. “You can tell he’s sincere. He said, 'If I have an opportunity to do a deal and I’ve got some free time, I’ll do it, but it’s not going to interfere with what I have to do this season.' I think he realizes, and the team realizes, this has a chance to be a really good year.”
Murray said the fact Daniels will not have to look over his shoulder wondering whether or not he’s the starting quarterback should pay huge dividends.
“We talked yesterday, and he’s always had to compete. He’s always had to split reps,” Murray said. “At USC, he was competing for the job, last year he was competing for the job, it was Jamie’s (Newman) job. He’s never been the dude. He’s never been the guy getting all the reps in the spring, all the reps in the summer, and all the reps in fall camp.”
That will change when the Bulldogs kick off fall camp in early August.
Although Carson Beck, Stetson Bennett, and Brock Vandagriff will all provide competition, Murray said Daniels will benefit knowing he’s the guy under center for the Bulldogs this fall.
“To be the leader, there’s something different when you're the guy. The guys in the locker room look at you a little bit different; you get the respect a lot more. If you’re an offensive lineman or a receiver and you’re battling, you really don’t know who to lean on,” Murray said.
“Now, he knows he’s going to be leaned on as the guy. If they have a question, he’s coming to me. It’s going to be nice for him to be on the same page as everyone when it comes to film study, the reps with the receivers, and the timing down, to take the keys from Todd Monken and say, I’m ready to go. With confidence brings success, and he’s got a lot of confidence right now.”