May 28, 2024

How should Tigers enthusiasts perceive the existing quarterback scenario and the prolonged predictions for the central position? Moreover, what can be expected with the abundance of talent in the wide receiver department that the Tigers are introducing to the Plains?

To commence, let’s refer to the 2024 Auburn snap counts for a foundation. Subsequently, we can delve into the future of the Auburn football program. Is there a possibility that either Geriner or the incoming freshman, Walker White, might eventually present a challenge to Thorne? While it remains a possibility, let’s initially focus on the imminent Music City Bowl.

Auburn football, Hugh Freeze land 4-star QB Walker White over Clemson

Considering the structure of modern-era bowl games, especially those at lower levels like this, it serves as an opportunity for players across the depth chart to showcase their skills, concluding the 2023 season and setting a precedent for the 2024 spring practice. The quarterback position is no exception, with Thorne at the forefront.

In the upcoming matchup against Maryland, it is imperative for Thorne to make prudent decisions with the football, exhibit creativity as a runner when feasible (accumulating 666 yards, 6.4 yards per carry, and 3 touchdowns this season), and generate substantial-yardage plays. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, anticipate Thorne to assume the role of Quarterback 1 against the Terrapins.

Could Geriner possibly see some playing time in the battle against Maryland? The likelihood is low, as Coach Freeze and the staff prioritize securing a victory to build momentum for the offseason. Playing a younger quarterback without a clear need is atypical, as inexperienced quarterbacks often lead to errors and turnovers.

Should Geriner find himself on the field, the hope is that he contributes to scoring points and aids the Tigers in securing a win. If not, it provides Thorne with an opportunity to add to his career passing stats of 8,172 yards and 64 touchdowns, contributing to Auburn’s success. Now, let’s shift our focus to a more in-depth discussion about the 2024 season.

With Geriner having 32 snaps to his name, he remains somewhat of an unknown entity, and White, a highly-regarded prospect, has yet to take any college snaps, headlining Auburn’s top-10 2024 recruiting class. In contrast, Thorne boasts 2,440 career snaps as a college football player, in addition to the previously mentioned passing statistics. This presents a challenging decision for Coach Freeze and his staff.

While Thorne undoubtedly brings experience to the table, he needs to further develop chemistry with the returning Auburn receivers. Jay Fair, the top returning receiver for 2024, has accumulated 30 receptions, 300 yards, and 2 touchdowns. The same applies to flex tight end Rivaldo Fairweather, with 33 receptions, 349 yards, and 6 touchdowns in the 2023 season. Fortunately, reinforcements are on the way.

The elite 2024 Auburn wide receiver class, featuring Bryce Cain, Malcolm Simmons, Perry Thompson, and Cameron Coleman, is expected to yield immediate benefits for Thorne and all the Auburn quarterbacks. If Thorne can establish a connection with these young talents, in addition to strengthening his rapport with Fair, Fairweather, and others, it will significantly ease his responsibilities. This anticipation adds to the excitement surrounding Auburn’s upcoming spring practice.

Spring ball will serve as a platform for quarterbacks and receivers to refine their timing and rhythm, allowing the Auburn offensive staff to streamline effective plays from their playbook for the upcoming 2024 roster. Witnessing the evolution of the offense is bound to be captivating, promising a positive outlook for the future, regardless of which quarterback ultimately secures the starting position in 2024.

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