ORLANDO, Fla. — Georgia’s Aaron Murray hasn’t escaped the pocket with the intention of running downfield much this year. And presumably, he won’t use his legs too often against Nebraska, either.
Not including sacks, Murray’s carried the football 31 times for 83 yards (2.7 yards per carry). He has just two runs of more than 10 yards this year. His three rushing touchdowns all originated from the 1-yard line.
As defensive end Eric Martin puts it, though, there’s always a chance Murray could take off, even if film study proves otherwise — the junior quarterback would rather buy time and keep surveying the coverage. The NU defensive line can’t completely disregard the QB run game, according to Martin.
But obviously, it’s important to get pressure on a guy whose pass efficiency rating is second nationally (172.4).
“When there’s pressure in your face, you know it’s hard to make passes,” Martin said. “We’re going to try our best to put pressure on him.”
Below are a few tidbits on Murray, the team leader who I profiled earlier this week…
>> Murray will consider leaving early for the NFL draft after the season. He insists he has not thought about it yet, though.
>> Murray’s from Tampa, Fla., which is about an hour’s drive away. So he’ll have plenty of family and friends around this week (he’s still looking for tickets). But Murray said he did too much tour guiding and not enough preparing before last year’s Outback Bowl. In a 33-30 loss to Michigan State, Murray was 20-for-32, totaling 288 passing yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Staying focused is Murray’s top priority this week.
>> The weapons around Murray have helped him this year, according to coach Mark Richt. Two freshmen running backs have emerged. A once “helpless” offensive line has matured and developed. The receivers have fought through adversity. “When you have a quarterback that can make it all work, with the help he has around him, that’s been a big part of it,” Richt said.