UGA quarterback challenge: Who would you pick?

If you could draft among these four at their college peak, who would you take? (Georgiadogs.com)

If you could draft among these four at their college peak, who would you take? (Georgiadogs.com)

In addition to playing fruitbasket turnover with the player draft, Mark Richt and company are spicing up Saturday’s G-Day a bit with a halftime quarterback skills challenge pitting Matthew Stafford, Eric Zeier, David Greene and D.J. Schockley against each other for charity.

That group includes UGA’s three career passing yardage leaders in Greene (11,528), Zeier (11,153) and Stafford (7,731), and the most recent QB to win an SEC championship for the Dawgs, Shockley.

Through Georgiadogs.com, fans can bid on the opportunity to participate in the challenge by catching passes from the QBs. (No word on whether you have to sign an injury waiver in case you’re the unlucky subject trying to snag one of Stafford’s bullets.) The winning fan will earn the chance to make a pass to win $25,000, to be split between the fan and the fund established for injured Diamond Dog Johnathan Taylor. If the fan misses the toss, they will receive a 42-inch HD LCD Television and two 2011 Georgia football season tickets.

The auction closes Thursday and the winners will be notified Friday. All participants must be at least five years removed from playing high school, college or professional football.

Stafford, of the Detroit Lions, is the only active player in the competition and so should rank as the favorite, but just to make this more interesting, and in the spirit of Richt’s G-Day draft, let’s say that with the help of a little time travel you had the chance to pick a quarterback from among these four in their peak college playing condition.

Unless scrambling was one of the skills, you’d figure Shockley would probably be at a disadvantage in a competition like Saturday’s, but what if you’re talking about drafting a team? Do you take his playmaking ability over Stafford, who definitely had the stronger arm? Zeier was probably the most accurate. Strength and accuracy would probably give Stafford and Zeier the edge in a straight skills competition, but if I were drafting a QB to run my team, I’d definitely take Mr. Reliable, the lefthander Greene, the winningest of the bunch.

How about you, who would you take?

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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg

224 comments Add your comment

copdawg

April 14th, 2011
10:16 am

Do not really caqre how he did in the NFL Greene is the man.
no matter the situation with Greene in the game one always
had the feeling he could pul it out. Never will forget sitting in
Neyland stadium and watching the come back, almost as good
as good as Belue to Scott, was in Jax for that also.

TRAVELDAWG

April 14th, 2011
10:20 am

David Greene loved UGA, still does, and gave us our highlight reel of the century when he lead us down the field in Knoxville to step on Tennessee’s face with a hobnail boot. Stafford couldn’t hold his jockstrap for him as to dedication and contribution to the Dawgs. Love Eric Zeier and Shockley, both, but they were not in the same league with Greene.

hop

April 14th, 2011
10:26 am

DAVID GREENE was very average qb who who had a great team to surround him, much like buck belue who had the greatest tailback in college football.

greene and belue could not make it in the nfl and that is a fact!

stafford is the most gifted qb georgia hAS Had in the last 20 years.

YardDawg

April 14th, 2011
10:36 am

Hope Greene or Shockley wins it.

Not so much with Stafford.

To hell with Zeier.

SouthGA Dawg

April 14th, 2011
10:40 am

No contest the winner is David Greene.Stafford has a cannon but he threw too many stupid interceptions. Greene all day every day, Joe Cox close second.

It Ain't Rocket Science

April 14th, 2011
10:43 am

Greene was a general on the field. He never gave up on a game and inspired his teammates to go that extra inch to pull out a game, and keep their heads up. If this competition could be based on leadership, Grene would win hands down.
Shockley would be a close second. Not the best passer but a inspiration to his teammates. Played with a lot of guts and his scrambling pulled out a couple of wins for UGA. Had a never give up attitude second to none.
Stafford is the best of the QB’s listed as far as physical skills. Not much of a leader and tried to be a hero too many times and win the game by making unwise decisions. If he can control his urges in the NFL and take what the defense gives him, he will still be a great one. Hard to shine though when you are with a team like the Lions. They are an exercise in futility, no matter who plays for them. Never the right coach in the game it seems.
Zeir was probably a more accurate passer with an arm almoist equally as strong as Stafford, I think the mental aspect of the game kept him from being a star in the NFL. He just never got used to playing with a lot less support than he had at UGA. He was surrounded by less than a solid team at the next level. He would have needed to be able to scramble to utilize his good arm more.

john mceachern

April 14th, 2011
11:13 am

Stafford, if he’s healthy

Beast from the East

April 14th, 2011
11:14 am

“To hell with Zeier.”

@YardDawg,
What gives with that? Seriously, what did he ever do to you? As a Gator fan, he was the only one that I ever feared going against. That guy was a playmaker and used all of his receivers. If he had the same defenses that Greene was fortunate enough to play with the Dawgs might have won a NC or two during his tenure. Why the hate?

In your Fat gut, you're still FAT

April 14th, 2011
11:18 am

Georgia 35
Boise state 24

PMC

April 14th, 2011
11:57 am

depends on what you’re taking them for. College. David Greene all the way.

Zeier didn’t win enough, Stafford didn’t care enough.

Greene made up for lack of ability with sheer will and leadership. He just got it done. Absolutely brilliant with his ball fakes.

I’d take Shockley probably 3rd after Greene and Zeier. If his knee had only held up…. and he wasn’t saddled with whatever the crap Willie Martinez decided to do in the first half of that terrible sugar bowl.

Coachdawg 2000

April 14th, 2011
12:04 pm

Stafford will turn out to be more Ryan Leaf than Peyton Manning. Also Crash Davis has been hired as QB coach for Detroit. Afterall we all Stafford has a $40 million arm and 10 cent brain.

Richts Butt Cut

April 14th, 2011
12:17 pm

Zeier #1- was the only one who could put the team on his back and carry them… DJ would be second, then Stafford, then Greene.

Richts Butt Cut

April 14th, 2011
12:18 pm

Stafford will be a complete bust and a waste of $60M when its all said and done.. just fyi…

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
12:19 pm

Stafford already has better stats than Leaf did in his entire career. Starting in year 3 of his career, Leaf was gone from the league. Year 3 for Matt, the Lions anxiously await Stafford’s return from injury.

There is no comparison.

Stafford will star this year. Lions OL is better, they have a good running game and their defense is improving.

Richts Butt Cut

April 14th, 2011
12:20 pm

Zeier- Heart, Smarts, Skills
DJ- Heart, Smarts, Skills,
Greene- Heart, Smarts
Stafford- Skills

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
12:23 pm

If they can keep those two on the field in 2011, this offense has the potential to be explosive.
**********************************************************************

I didn’t write this. Sorry haters.

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
12:24 pm

You know I'm right

April 14th, 2011
12:29 pm

UGA’s best quarterback of all is now playing for LSU. :-)

But after him, it’s Fran Tarkenton, who isn’t afraid to tell the truth about UGA.

Commonsense

April 14th, 2011
12:29 pm

If you are a knowlegeable, informed football fan over the age of 25 you would obviously pick Greene, no brainer.

If you are under 25 and think Michael Vick is cool and play Madden everyday you would probably pick Stafford or Shockley.

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
12:34 pm

Zach Met=3rd string at LSU
Already recruited over for next year
He will never play

Tarkenton is a tool
Radio drive by shooting
Never shows his face or is man enough to talk in person.

In your Fat gut, you're still Fat

April 14th, 2011
12:36 pm

2011 SEC Championship Game

Georgia 31
LSU 27

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
12:44 pm

Colonel Reb

April 14th, 2011
1:03 pm

Florida plays in the weak SEC East, so it still could contend. If the Gators played in the SEC West, they would be lucky to finish fifth.

Uh oh is right. If Florida would be lucky to finish fifth in the SEC West, Georgia would be lucky to finish sixth.

Truth is, all of us in the West are better than Georgia. Leaving Oxford this year, Georgia will own a losing streak against every SEC West team.

DawginLex

April 14th, 2011
1:08 pm

nutt is done after 2011

Georgia 38
Ole Missy 17

No problem. miss State is twice the program y’all are.

jnasty

April 14th, 2011
1:37 pm

i would take dirty dave greene to lead my team. i also might take him as UGA IX!!! ole boy has the perfect bulldog face for the job. isiah crowell should have held up david greene at his signing ceremony.

McDawg

April 14th, 2011
1:38 pm

Shockley-if he had not gotten hurt we would have played for national championship that year

McDawg

April 14th, 2011
1:40 pm

Col Reb the war is over hand has been for sometime

UGA Insider

April 14th, 2011
1:42 pm

Chaz Ramsey is about to testify to the NCAA next week regarding improper benefits at AU. If my math is correct that is 8 current ongoing investigations currently being held at Auburn. * that is embarrassing.

Jim Tressel's Sweater Vest

April 14th, 2011
2:01 pm

If you want to win, you have to pick Greene.

Go Dawgs!

April 14th, 2011
2:20 pm

If Stafford had the same line to work behind as Greene, it would be no contest. As for Stafford’s interceptions- how many of those came when we were behind and he was having to make low percentage throws to keep us in a game? Don’t even get me started on stone-handed WRs he had as well.

Greene was a GREAT game manager, and could audible with the best of them, but he had a LOT more to work with than Stafford. He had arguably one of the best O-lines, and one of the best if not the best WR/TE corps.

Bubba J. Dawgman

April 14th, 2011
2:45 pm

Greene all the way!

Gates

April 14th, 2011
2:51 pm

@ Go Dawgs!

Thats a huge negative. Stafford threw so many picks because he went for the homerun everytime. He loved the talking heads going on and on about his arm strength.

Stafford was on team “me,” while Greene was on team UGA.

Pitbull

April 14th, 2011
3:00 pm

Andy Johnson as a runner

Matt Robinson as a passer

Wayne Johnson as the sturdiest

Preston Ridlehuber as the gutsiest

Buck Belue as the steadiest

John LaStinger always just got the job done

And Reggie Bawl was the most fun to watch throw away a game to Georgia.

truedawg

April 14th, 2011
3:11 pm

in their prime?? build a team around, is that the question? Big Z.. then David G !! Z= skills and leadership, David heart and leadership. Z was just a lil more blessed with and arm, but couldn’t go wrong with either one.
Matt “me” stafford will wins a skills contest everytime though, love to take his arm and put it on David G, Then you’d have the best to ever play the game.

Who knows though, we get a O line and a running game, We might have a great one in Athens right now in Murray, LeMay, Mason…truely stacked at QB in Athens.
Murray needs a knoxville drive or a BoBo comeback in a bowl to show he has what it takes. But hey, only one year into it, with 3 left, I have alot of hope in the kid.

truedawg

April 14th, 2011
3:13 pm

one more thing…how good would Z have been under CMR..a QB coach? We didn’t really have the best coaching when he was there for QB’s

Macon Dog in the Middle East

April 14th, 2011
3:29 pm

Although I realize that half of today’s readers and bloggers were not alive to see my choice demonstrate his terrific leadership, composure under pressure and wonderful QB skills, both running and passing, I would choose none of the four featured here. My choice for the best leader and most exciting Bulldog QB would be Andy Johnson.
Buck Belue would be a close second. Both of those players could ignite their teammates and inspire them to play at a higher level and as a beautifully effective machine. Ray Goff had that ability too, and he surely was deserving of his SEC Player of the Year award.
A. Johnson drew raves from every coach for whom he played. During his 16 years at Georgia, Erk Russell chose A Johnson as the best Bulldog QB. Chuck Fairbanks, for whom A. Johnson played at New England (as a running back), could not compliment him enough. A. Johnson’s win over Tech in ‘71, and Belue’s in ‘78 (both nail-biting, exhausting, sweet victories), are two of the greatest games I have ever seen. They rank high in my top 10 all-time Georgia victories.
Of the four QB’s pictured herein, I would choose Green for his inspirational leadership and coolness. He could also light that unifying, take-no-prisoners fire in his teammates. For pure ability, however, Zeier tops the list. Green and Zeier could be compared to A. Johnson, Belue and Goff. Both Stafford and Shockley were better-than-good QB’s, who could rise to the occasion, but neither played in A. Johnson’s or Belue’s zone.

Denver

April 14th, 2011
3:39 pm

Mark

April 14th, 2011
3:47 pm

If we are talking about a team then I have to go with Shockley, as much as I loved Greene watching the team the next season under Shockley had me wondering about what might have been.

Old Fart

April 14th, 2011
4:13 pm

David Green. Shockley is a joke. Buck was a winner. Murray can be up there before it is over. The Tech fan that posted 77-10 Boise, put yo money where your clueless mouth is………

Otto

April 14th, 2011
4:19 pm

Tarkenton for OC

wilson72

April 14th, 2011
5:43 pm

Zeier, hands down. Stafford was never a real leader, Greene had the exact chemistry, and command.. But not a lot of strength. Shockley is a hybrid. But still needs the right personnel to be effective. Zeier loved the school played, games like they could be his last. Come to think of it the ones with heart will always be loved. One may have a whole lot of NFL success but he will never be held in the esteem as the other 3.

Batter up!

April 14th, 2011
5:57 pm

As a public service in case you missed it:

For the second time in about three weeks, Georgia Tech gave Georgia a nine-inning demonstration of the might of its heralded freshman class.

Curtis Compton, ccompton@ajc.com Jackets freshman Daniel Palka (right) hit his team-best seventh home run of the season against UGA April 12.

From the Bulldogs’ vantage point in the first-base dugout, it could not have been a very encouraging presentation. Tech freshman pitcher Matthew Grimes overpowered Georgia, and freshman designated hitter Daniel Palka delivered a decisive two-run homer in the Yellow Jackets’ 5-3 win over Georgia on Tuesday night at Tech’s Russ Chandler Stadium.

“He pitched a great game,” Georgia coach David Perno said of Grimes.

Tech, ranked 12th in the country in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll, improved to 25-9 and has won the past five against the Bulldogs. Georgia is 18-16.

“They’ve all contributed, done a great job for us,” Tech coach Danny Hall said of his freshmen. “We’ve needed them.”

By winning the first two games of the season against Georgia, Tech has clinched the season series for the second year in a row, barring the teams meeting in the NCAA tournament. They’ll play one more game, April 26 at Turner Field. The last time Tech won the season series in back-to-back years was 1998-99.

Hall’s freshmen appear prepared to extend the run. Last year, in the wake of losing seven underclassman starters to the draft, including first-round pick pitcher Deck McGuire, Hall reeled in 17 players. Of the class, rated as high as sixth in the country, five started Tuesday night.

That would include Grimes, a 6-foot-6 right-hander from Mill Creek High who got a shaving-cream pie in the face for his efforts Tuesday. Against the soft-hitting Bulldogs, Grimes struck out a career-high 10 in 6 2/3 innings with no walks and gave up two runs to beat Georgia for the second time this year.

“He couldn’t have pitched better and gave us a big lift by pitching the way he did,” Hall said.

Grimes (5-1) stranded five Georgia base runners in the first four innings, giving Tech a chance to unravel Bulldogs pitcher Chase Hawkins (1-2).

They began to do so in the third, employing four singles and a groundout to score two runs, and again in the fourth, when Palka barely cleared the right-field fence for his team-high seventh home run of the season and a 4-1 lead.

Another freshman, pitcher Dusty Isaacs, did his bit later on. With two on and two out in the top of the seventh, Isaacs retired Kyle Farmer, Georgia’s RBI leader, with a three-pitch strikeout. He struck out two more in the eighth in giving up one run. Farmer also made the last out of the game, another two-on, two-out situation.

“Maybe a couple things go a different direction, it could have been a whole different outcome,” Perno said.

wilson72

April 14th, 2011
6:14 pm

Batter Up, what does baseball have to do with Georgia Football. Please go troll some place else.

Dawg4life

April 14th, 2011
6:46 pm

DAWG with two bags over head

April 14th, 2011
6:56 pm

Greene, no question.

dave

April 14th, 2011
7:04 pm

Zeier without a doubt…Best pure passer to ever play at UGA.

Dawg89

April 14th, 2011
7:42 pm

Greene, then Zeier, then Shock, then Stafford. Of the four, Stafford is the least.

GTDAWG

April 14th, 2011
7:42 pm

Gen. Forrest

April 14th, 2011
9:04 pm

Bloomberg/Businessweek 2011 College rankings based on ROI (that’s Return on Investment for the liberal arts majors and dawg fans who dropped out of high school, which is the majority):

Georgia Tech — #23 (#2 Public school)

University of Georgia — #203 (ROTFLMAO!)

‘nuf said pups, now give me fries and a shake with that!.

Don’t feel too bad though, ya’ll finally beat Auburn (#246) at something!!!!

Ramguy

April 14th, 2011
9:54 pm

Matthew Stafford with the teams that Greene played on. Next!