If on that run against Air Force, had he not been hit in such a manner that the collarbone of his non-throwing shoulder snapped, would he have been able to lead Colorado State the entire season?
And if that break not occurred, would he be entering fall camp as the clear-cut starter at quarterback for the Rams, not a junior battling it out for the job with sophomore Conner Smith?
Then again, it took two injuries to get Smith to the field last year. But the Rams did win three of his four starts. That's when the questions really began from the outside, but Grayson was already in the process.
"I mean, I've asked myself a couple of times," he said. "Obviously last season, I probably asked myself that probably every day. This past spring and summer I've gone back and wondered if we would still be having this competition if I had gone the whole year or not. I'm fine with the competition."
He has to be. He has no choice. But one of them will win the job, and CSU offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Dave Baldwin would rather not string them on or the team along too far.
His ideal world would be to come out today and name one or the other, but he said that won't happen.
"We told them going into this camp there would be that competition, so if I named it tomorrow, that wouldn't be fair," Baldwin said.
It's not just the coaches watching, either. Teammates have said they are comfortable with whoever wins the job, especially since both have experience. Grayson has started eight games in his career; Smith four.
"Whoever steps up, I'm all for it and ready to block for them," senior center Weston Richburg said. "That's not our decision. That's up to coach and what they decide. I think we've got two very capable candidates for that position."
They are different in style. Grayson is more mobile and can offer the offense some flexibility in that realm, and while it is his ability to be able to tuck and run that led him to the sideline, he said he will not change his tactics.
On the other hand, Smith is the prototypical pocket passer, possessing a strong arm and the confidence to make any throw at any time.
Baldwin noted there are two key factors in his mind -- accuracy and dependability. Both have solid completion percentages (Smith was higher at 63.5 to Grayson's 56.5), but Grayson threw seven touchdown passes with three interceptions, while Smith was at six on both counts.
Grayson struggled his first year, too, when it came to protecting the ball, and Smith feels with the experience comes the knowledge of when and where to attack. He said there are four or five key throws in a game, and he doesn't hesitate to fire.