LINCOLN, Neb. - Nebraska senior quarterback Taylor Martinez has taken the majority of snaps for the Huskers over the last two seasons.
With his senior year approaching, and very little game experience behind him, the question now becomes will the Huskers try to get key reps for backups going forward in 2013 – especially a guy like redshirt freshman Tommy Armstrong, who has a strong chance of becoming a starter in 2014.
“There is different philosophies,” said Nebraska offensive coordinator Tim Beck. “There is a part of me that says you should. But I think we talked about this before – I want to win. Whatever it takes to win.
“If we have to play Taylor every snap, we are going to play him every snap, that's the bottom line. We have to work each series, of each quarter, and each game next year.”
The question is an interesting, considering Nebraska fans have seen what can happen when a No. 2 is not necessarily prepared.
Last season, against Michigan, Nebraska saw Wolverines starting quarterback Denard Robinson go down with an injury. Brady Hoke turned to redshirt freshman Russell Bellomy, who had very little game experience – Bellomy finished 3-for-16, with three interceptions.
Beck was asked on Monday if seeing an experience like Michigan's first hand has changed his mind at all on getting a No. 2 ready?
“No, we are fortunate with the number of guys, we are rep our No. 2 and even are No. 3. With some programs, their No. 2 gets two or three plays. With us, he's getting the same amount of plays as Taylor (in practice). So if it is week eight and he hasn't played much, he's run 60 plays a day in practice compared to ten,” said Beck. “Can you simulate game experience by not playing – no. But that's hard to do. You have to be smart when you play those guys, what you need them to do and how you need them to do it.
“I think if something was to happen to Taylor, we have some veteran guys: Kenny Bell, Quincy (Enunwa), Jamal (Turner), Ameer (Abdullah), even Imani (Cross) with the way he's playing, the offensive line. You have some guys that you could lean on a bit harder.”