Encouraging signs on Dogs defense

Demarcus Dobbs knows improvement is needed up front. (Georgiadogs.com)

Demarcus Dobbs knows improvement is needed up front. (Georgiadogs.com)

If talking the talk is at least half the battle toward improving, then I’m encouraged by some of the comments coming out of Athens about fixing Georgia’s defense.

First of all, at least the players appear to recognize some of the problems. David Hale of Bulldogs Blog talked to Demarcus Dobbs and Rennie Curran about why the Dogs have been successful against the run but unable to generate much pressure on the quarterback. Dobbs said the Dogs’ defensive line has been bad at getting off their blocks on passing plays because they were expecting run, and said the defense has been killed by play action. Curran said it comes down to needing more film study and being better at reading pass formations, while Dobbs said the linemen have to improve on reading the blocks of the offensive line.

Fundamentals, in other words.

At least there’s no question Georgia has a lot of talent up front on defense. They just need to get it done, as Jeff Owens noted in the Macon Telegraph: “For the front seven, we’ve got to get more pressure on the QB. We’ve got to rush more. That’s what our focus should be this week. We know Arizona State is going to throw the football, and as a defensive tackle, I’ve got to pin my ears back and try to get to the QB.”

Meanwhile, back in the secondary, where just about everyone had scorch marks on them after the Arkansas game, cornerback Bryan Evans admits most of the blame belongs with the players. He told Hale: “Some plays we’re in great position to make plays, we just didn’t make them. Other times, we’re just lackadaisical at getting to our positions where we’re supposed to be at.”

That sort of play calls for some bench time, so it’s good to see defensive coordinator Willie Martinez saying he’s going to “get some other guys some more opportunities” back there, specifically young safeties Bacarri Rambo and Sanders Commings. Martinez said Commings might even see some playing time at cornerback.

Meanwhile, in his Tuesday press conference the head man, Mark Richt, succinctly summed up Georgia’s problem on defense: “It’s always the same answer, a combination of pressure and coverage. Which comes first? What helps the other one the most? … If we put pressure on the quarterback he tends to throw the ball too soon or a little bit off balance, and that helps your coverage. It’s as simple as that. We have to cover better and we have to put more pressure. One area where I thought we might be putting a little more pressure on the quarterback where we really haven’t up to this point on a consistent basis is right up the middle. We need to get more from the inside push. If the quarterback does step up he’s got nowhere to be comfortable or no space and we’ve had too much of that.”

The Dogs have been “stout against the run,” Richt noted, but he doesn’t believe Georgia’s defensive front is only suited to doing that. “I’ve seen Jeffrey [Owens], Geno [Atkins], Kade [Weston], DeAngelo [Tyson], I’ve seen all those guys, and even young Abry [Jones], they all have the ability to rush the passer and push the pocket. We just haven’t done it well enough on a consistent basis. So that’s definitely a big point of contention for us.”

Like I said, at least they’re talking the talk. The bigger question remains: Can Georgia fix the problems on the field when it counts?

163 comments Add your comment

Dawgy Daddy

September 24th, 2009
9:19 am

We have the hosses on D but need to utilize better. 3 up front and keep them rotated. 5 behind them and sombody please cover the tightend.


September 24th, 2009
9:20 am

the coaches get paid whether they win or not.they just show up for a payday.willie is adeacon in cmr church.maybe we should get on the athletic director.oh, he is just there for a payday too.


September 24th, 2009
9:47 am

Bryan Evans said they have been lackadisical. Rennie Curran said they need more film study. Richt says it is because of turnovers and penalties that the defense has had a short field to defend. Whats our next excuse? The moon was too bright?
Please just man-up and tell me we have problems on the defense and they will be corrected. When are we going to get that fire back this team had in Richt’s first few years? What player wants to be a leader on this team? Not just the quote man for the AJC! I know we don’t have a Tim Tebow type leader, but someone has to come close.


September 24th, 2009
9:56 am

Where is Quinton Banks in this secondary? Wasn’t he cosidered a stud at one time?


September 24th, 2009
11:09 am

Yes, and I need to fix the fact that I’m not married to Jennifer Aniston.


September 24th, 2009
11:25 am

UGA’s D team has several pro prospects, believe it or not. This has been true for years. These kids “save” them selves and do not really hustle. UGA gets hustled and also the fans but they are the only ones that get “hustled.” The players want to jump to the NFL. Fine.

Take #9 and about 4 or 5 more on that side of the ball. They can play MUCH better but they do not in order to avoid injury. It takes a tough coaching staff to meld these kids into a solid unit. This is the root cause of the LETHARGY that we are witnessing at UGA on D.

This has become a very bad trend and last year it infected the entire team with jealousy,etc. We laid down in the tech game and the Florida game and to Bama. Not saying that we would have defeated Florida or Bama, just saying that we could have played far better. tech? We simply liad down in the 3rd qtr and they know it.

What and how to avoid this? I guess coaching is the answer because ALL OF THE GOOD SEC teams have NFL talent. The great coaches inspire these kids to win or else. UGA gets great talent but it does not go beyond that. They KNOW that they do not have to hustle. To bench the great players might cause a rift, so the tail wags the dog, so to speak. I would bench them and take my chances. If they do not play hard ………..their lousy attitudes and lack of work ethics will be well known come NFl draft day. THAT is how you get their attention. Tell them what the facts of life are. Work hard and move on or come NFL draft day ……………See Fred Gipson.

UGA, class of 73


September 24th, 2009
11:28 am

JokebyCoke, Georgia was playing Tech in Atlanta, sometime in the 70s, playing badly and behind at halftime. Erk pointed to the acronym “GTAA” (Georgia Tech Athletic Association) stamped on the locker room wall and suggested that the T and A in the middle should swith places to form “GATA” – Get After Their A$$es! Of course, Georgia rallied to beat Tech. Erk had a magic touch. What he did at GSU was beyond amazing. Erk was a master motivator and probably one of the all-time great college football coaches, even though he spent most of his career as an assistant.

lt crk

September 24th, 2009
11:46 am

bring back vangorder

Saint Simons

September 24th, 2009
12:33 pm

The dogs will lose to Arkansas st. Sat. and Tech will win. That goose flew over the stadium the other night and it was…an omen….yes an omen. Our problems have flown south for the winter and the great one says we’ll win the rest of our games as soon as those dad-blame aliens give Dwyer back his hat.

I’m glad you all lost…well you won at Arkansas, but you ant got no QB like ours….man he can run and he learns all those moves from watching Dora the Explorer…..anyway….it’s raining twix bars again…..m just showed up so we ahve to hav our tickle pile…..i;ll be back to gloat when yall get beat and…..did you see the size of that chicken?


September 24th, 2009
12:51 pm

Finally! I’ve called for some of you (sincere fans, not the rabblerousers) to analyze the D objectively. Looking close at the details of games allows rational blogging to defend your contentions. I confess that no attention is paid to any blog beginning with a rant toward a person and his ability to make a living. I do not have high-speed since I live too far away from booster stations, but a gentleman (and a fine Dawg fan) has done so(analyzed the data) by the name of Jim F. as ided in Hale’s column this morning. Hallelujah!! Go to Dawgbone.com and read his take on analyzed data(Digging Deeper on Defense). Those of you who don’t…Go to Hell!

The ranters against WM on here are not representative as 50% Bulldogs. True Bulldog Fans on here are split fairly evenly with detractors spraying invectives. If you truly are a fan who is sincere in your negative evaluation of our D coach, then you need to read the article. It reflects everything that I have urged you to do. Analyze the data before jumping on the negative bandwagon like Bradley did. Analyzing his bloggers demonstrates that a few people are not indicative of the Bulldog Nation. Posting score totals is NOT an analysis, folks. Finding out what accounted for those points IS analysis. Blog Bradley and tell him to quit giving dishonest and cheap-shot articles for rivals and highschool ranters to diss our coaches. Read David Hale and you can see the path you have been led down by anti-UGA people(like Bradley) who line up to hand out torches to the lynch mob. Bradley owes an apology to our program for intellectually dishonest data presentation that goes after a man’s job without even an attempt at introspection into his reason for publishing the article. Everyone should drop a note to Furman Bisher and ask him to judge Bradley with the same short-shrift he has used on a good coach and for having thrown fuel on a viscious football program pyre.

I’m demanding an apology from Bradley for not analyzing and presenting cogent evidence for his threat to our D coach’s job. The ONLY person hired to hire and fire coaches is Richt who answers to Evans who answers to Adams who answers to the Board of Regents. All of them are answerable to our University/Alumni probity. Not Bradley and not the AJC and not our rivals.

MobileDawg- Hope you see this and read Hale’s article. I think you are reaching for this data with your scientific background and could appreciate it more for the ammo it gives us to blast the interlopers and naysayers(they won’t read it). Alt, shane#1, atl-xmen, Cuz, DawgGirl32 and numerous other fans who think enough of your school and it’s programs to pridefully blog in defense….put Hale’s article in your files to come back with facts in the future. We know that fans and others have been sensitized toward judging every bad play with Martinez in mind. Trash thinking.

Thank you Jim F. and David Hale. SMART DAWGS! GOOD DAWGS!

Let’s kick some Sundevil butt this weekend. SIC’EM DAWGS!


September 24th, 2009
1:11 pm

I’ll believe it when I see it. Is ESPNU the only channel covering the game?? Isn’t that a package deal channel?? I might have to listen to a primetime home game on the radio???????

big dawg 89

September 24th, 2009
1:44 pm

i’ve said before and i’ll say it again, for all of you doubters who are unhappy with the dawgs, there’s a very simple solution,, if you don’t like the product,then don’t buy it!!! simple as that,,you don’t like the dawgs right now, well then, simply don’t watch em or go to the games..all of this hating you’re doing is not helping matters.. we all know the issue here, but we all really need to be supportive of our program. if not, then move on.. i for one, will continue to be very satisfied with winning 10 games every year with a chance each and every year that we may win the SEC.. and we know what happens to the winner of the SEC, they play for the NC.. unfortunately, florida has been a role, which i think will come to an end very soon..other than them, we’re as good as anybody…


The Ol Ball Coach

September 24th, 2009
1:45 pm

Funny how these Byrnes HS players (B. Evans) just get, well….Burned.