PLANT CITY, Fla. — Is there a quarterback controversy in Tampa Bay? Among the fervent followers of the Vipers, yes. Within the organization, however, there doesn’t appear to be.
Aaron Murray was 16-for-34 in Sunday’s clash versus the New York Guardians. He threw two interceptions and no TDs. He also fumbled twice, one which the Guardians took to the house for a score.
The Vipers went into the game with a plan to use backup QB/RB Quinton Flowers in certain packages, which they did. What they didn’t do for any stretch of the game is supplant the struggling Murray with Flowers.
And there are currently no certain plans to do so.
MURRAY INJURED VERSUS GUARDIANS
That could change, however, in the coming days as Murray is dealing with a lower leg injury that he suffered late in Sunday’s game.
“We expect Murray to take first team reps [when he returns to practice],” said head coach Marc Trestman. “Right now, he’s day-to-day. We’ll see where he is toward the end of the week before we leave.”
When asked if the injury affected Murray’s performance on the field, Trestman said that he was sure it was bothering the quarterback, but he was still able to make some dynamic throws post-injury.
Trestman said that playing better starts with the quarterback but stressed that football is about the entire team. “I think [Aaron and Quinton] would tell you, ‘We can play better.’ But it’s not only Aaron; he’s playing with 10 guys. Q [Quinton] is playing with 10 guys.”
Trestman, along with his players, are frustrated and disappointed with the outcome of Sunday’s game, but they know there’s no looking back. “You have to put the past away as quickly as you can, learn from it, and move forward.”
“[The Guardians] got the first punch and the second punch. And when you go on the road anywhere, in a professional league, that makes it tough.
Trestman stressed that there is a formula for success that was not executed last week. “The three elements that win early are smart football, physicality, and ball security. We didn’t match that formula for success and the results are clearly evident.”
LEAVING TAMPA BAY
Tampa Bay focused on making game corrections from last week at walkthroughs Tuesday. Practice Wednesday and Thursday will focus on preparing for their next opponent. On Friday, the Vipers depart for Seattle as they face the 0-1 Dragons Saturday at CenturyLink Field.
“We’re looking forward to getting out there on Saturday,” said Trestman. “It’s going to turn around fast for us. We have to go on the road – it’s going to be noisy – against a team that is just like us right now. We’re going to have to be ready, and we’r