How Carson Beck can majorly improve his game in 2024

Carson Beck had an incredible season in 2023, and don't be surprised if he's not even better in 2024. Here's how he can level up.
Georgia quarterback Carson Beck (15) looks to throw a pass during the second half of a NCAA college
Georgia quarterback Carson Beck (15) looks to throw a pass during the second half of a NCAA college / Joshua L. Jones / USA TODAY NETWORK

Georgia quarterback Carson Beck had some huge shoes to fill coming in behind back-to-back national championship winning quarterback Stetson Bennett. All things considered, Beck was a big reason the Bulldogs had another undefeated regular season, but he can still get better.

To hear Carson Beck discussed by members of the media and other college football coaches is to hear glowing reports and lots of superlatives thrown about. After a somehwat shaky start to his first full season as the Dawgs' starting quarterback, Beck became a polished pro worthy of Heisman Trophy mentions.

Beck finished 8th nationally in QB rating, fourth in completion percentage, and was tied for sixth in yards per attempt. He was an unshakable machine for Georgia. His cool demeanor made Matty Ice look somewhat combustible, and he earned the respect and support of his teammatees.

Sounds like the perfect guy to lead Georgia again in 2024, right?

Well, yes. But we can also expect more, because Beck has more to give and parts of his game to work on.

Here are the biggest ways Carson Beck can improve his game and bring Georgia back to the 12-team version of College Football Playoff and eventually another national title.

Carson Beck can improve his pre-snap reads.

For much of the 2023 season, Beck and the Bulldogs faced some fairly basic defenses. There weren't a lot of stunts being thrown his way, and when blitzes did come they were reasonably obvious to spot. It wasn't until the SEC Championship Game against Alabama that we really saw how Beck could struggle against a defense that was filled with disguises and blitz packages coming from all sides.

Beck doesn't have the wiley running ability of his predecessor, so he'll need to improve on reading what the defense is about to bring and make the proper protection calls and audibles.

People used to marvel at how little Tom Brady found himself sacked or even under duress. It wasn't always because he had the best offensive line in front of him, but more because Brady was a master at pre-snap reads and could counter what the defense was going to do before they even had time to do it.

If Beck really digs into some film of some of the best defenses in the country and studies formations, tendencies and the best way to counter what he sees, you'll see much less of him loping with his antelope-like stides avoiding the rush, and more frustrated defenses unsure of how to get to the Georgia quarterback.

Carson Beck can work on accuracy in his long passes

One thing Beck was really good at in 2023, and his completion percentage reflects this, was being accurate with his throws. He was a master at hitting timing routes on the money, and seemed to almost always have the perfect touch for a pass in the flat, a swing pass, or a fade.

But when Beck would cock his arm to take a shot downfield, more often than not, he was overthrowing even the speediest Georgia receivers. Beck only completed 40.9 percent of passes over 20 yards, and those numbers plummetted when the pass was over 40 yards, with Beck only connecting 20 times the entire season.

By comparison, Oregon's Bo Nix completed 37 passes of over 40 yards, and LSU's Jayden Daniels hit 33 times for long distance.

If Beck's accuracy on the long ball gets better to accompany the rest of his game, the Georgia passing game may set both SEC and national records.

Carson Beck can make his play-action fakes better

Every great quarterback has a signature, and almost all the greats were able to fool defenders, fans, and cameramen with a good play-action fake.

Now Beck's play-action isn't the worst out there, but in most cases, he's not doing the best job disguising the ball and getting close enough to the gut of the running back with it.

Georgia's running game should take a step up in 2024 (not that it was bad last season) which means a properly executed play-action pass could mean certain death for opposing defenses. It would be great to see Beck become Manning-like with his play-action move and really sell the run regardless of the play call.

If Beck can up his game in those three areas -- and mind you he wasn't awful in any of them -- he could not only garner some serious Heisman talk through the season, but he can certainly set himself apart as one of the all-time great SEC quarterbacks to ever play.