The offense for the Georgia Bulldogs will have a chance to be dominant in 2014. The Bulldogs have an experienced offensive line, a very skillful set of receivers and they could arguably have the best set of running backs in the country.
But it all starts and ends with the quarterback position, and the Bulldogs should be squared away there as well despite not having Aaron Murray.
One of the reasons the Bulldogs were able to score a lot of points on offense the past few years was the play of Murray, who is now the SEC all-time leader in passing yards and touchdowns. He came up short in terms of winning the SEC championship, but the quarterbacks who played behind Murray last year have a chance to do something he wasn’t able to do thanks to the rest of the talent on offense.
So let’s take a look at the top three quarterbacks for the Bulldogs in 2014.
Quarterback No. 1: Hutson Mason
This may be Mason’s first year as the starting quarterback, but because of a season-ending injury to Murray late last year, the fans got an early look of what to expect this season, as he played in the last 2.5 games.
In most areas, Mason is a lot like Murray. Both players make good decisions, they have strong arms, and both are very accurate. The one difference is Mason is not a scrambler like Murray, and Mason likes the offense to be more uptempo.
As it was mentioned earlier, Mason got his share of playing time last season, but he also got playing time in 2010 and 2011 backing up Murray. Here’s a look at his year-by-year stats at UGA.
|Hutson Mason's Year-by-Year State|
Based on his experience in the system and what he was able to do last season, the players should have a ton of confidence he can get the job done. Mason does not have the experience when it comes to being a starter, and there will be some times where things won’t go his way. But if he plays his game like he has throughout his career, the Bulldogs will have a very successful 2014 season.
Quarterback No. 2: Faton Bauta
When Mason was upgraded to starter last season, Bauta took over as the No. 2 quarterback.
He only played in three games last year and did not complete a single pass. However, he did have 22 rushing yards in the blowout game against Kentucky.
And that’s what Bauta brings to the table. He’s not a pocket passer like Mason, but he can scramble and gain a lot of yards with his legs as well as his arms.
When Bauta was coming out of high school two years ago, 247Sports listed him as the No. 10 dual-threat quarterback in the nation.
If he becomes the No. 1 starter for whatever reason, he would be a solid starter. Defenders would try to stop his running ability, but he has a good arm with a ton of zip. Bauta is the leading candidate for the starting job in 2015.
Quarterback No. 3: Brice Ramsey
After redshirting last season, Ramsey is ready to see a lot of action in 2014. The only problem is he will have to beat out Bauta, who has a little more experience.
Regardless, Ramsey arguably has the best arm out of the three quarterbacks and has a legit shot of becoming the backup quarterback before the season begins if he continues to improve.
Ramsey is more like Mason. He can throw from the pocket and likes the offense to be uptempo. But Ramsey is raw. He has not played the quarterback position as much as Bauta and Mason. So him being a starter this season will be a challenge because there are a lot of things he needs to work on.
But with him being the No. 6 pro-style quarterback in the country in 2013, per 247Sports, Ramsey will be up to speed very quickly and will make a strong case for the starting job in 2015.