Thank goodness for A.J. Green and Orson Charles

The return of Kris Durham will bolster Georgia's receiving corps. (Curtis Compton / AJC)

The return of Kris Durham will bolster Georgia's receiving corps. (Curtis Compton / AJC)

Coming out of signing day this week, Mark Richt admitted that Georgia’s lack of depth at wide receiver concerns him, especially after the loss of Da’Rick Rogers to Tennessee left the Dogs with only one incoming freshman receiver this year, Michael Bennett of Alpharetta.

Speaking of his receiving corps, Richt told the Athens Banner-Herald, “We don’t have, at this moment, the number that we would feel comfortable having — and that’s always give or take one or two.” Which pretty much echoes a quote from Mike Bobo last April when it was announced that rising senior receiver Kris Durham would have to take a medical redshirt year because of shoulder surgery.

Despite being thin at receiver last year, Georgia wound up with a pretty decent passing attack, mainly because of A.J. Green. Junior star Green is back this season, of course, for what many think will be his final season playing in Athens, but the Dogs’ second-leading receiver last year, Michael Moore, is gone.

Returning behind Green are what so far has proved to be a middling bunch of wide receivers, with Tavares King the most productive. There’s also Rantavious Wooten, who showed flashes last year but wasn’t consistent; Israel Troupe, who didn’t do much; and the  heavily hyped Marlon Brown, who barely registered on the field in what probably should have been a redshirt season for him but ended up being wasted. It would certainly help if Brown finally started to live up to his potential this year.

On the plus side, the Dogs do get back fifth-year senior Durham, who if he is able to shake off the rust could provide a set of sure hands in possession situations. And, who knows, Logan Gray could even wind up at receiver after the spring quarterback battle shakes out.

Looking ahead a year at Georgia’s receiving corps in 2011, when Green likely will have moved on to the NFL, isn’t a very pleasant prospect right now. But despite the lack of depth I’m not really that worried about the receiving end of the passing attack this season, barring a rash of injuries.

And that’s mainly because the Dogs are well-stocked at tight end, including hybrid Orson Charles, Georgia’s third-leading receiver last year, and Aron White, who was fifth for the year in catches.

“The one thing that I’m excited about and confident about is our tight end position,” Richt told the Banner-Herald. “We’re blessed with four outstanding tight ends; tight ends that certainly are playmakers and we’ve got good solid depth with guys that can really play that position. I think that’s going to a little bit of the burden off the wide receiver corps.”

Like many, I still expect the running game to be the primary focus of Georgia’s attack in 2010, especially early in the year, to take the pressure off whichever inexperienced quarterback ends up starting. But with targets like Green and Charles out there, Bobo and Richt are going to put it in the air a fair amount of the time and should be able to maintain some of the balance that their offense is based on.

I believe the Dogs will be just fine at receiver this year. Beyond that, I’m not so sure. What do you think?

259 comments Add your comment

down1plus2

February 7th, 2010
11:21 pm

Charles is quick enough to play some wideout at times too.. It would be a smart move I think to mix him in at both positions. To have him and white out on the field at the same time could give some defenses fits.

Dawg Forever

February 8th, 2010
10:14 am

Just Curious – What happened to Bruce Figgins?

BIGJAY

February 8th, 2010
6:18 pm

I’M A BIG DAWG FAN,BUT I HAVE TO SAY DA’RICK LETTING US DOWN IS MOSTLY OUR FAULT. WE ONLY GO AFTER 1 BIG TIME WR, THAT HARD, IN THE 2010 CLASS. WE PUT ALL OUR EGGS IN ONE (DA’RICK) BASKET. WE HAVE TO RECRUIT LIKE 4 OR 5 BIG TIME RECIEVERS IN ONE CLASS. THATS WHY THE GATORS AND THE TIDE ARE KICKING OUR BUTTS RIGHT NOW….HAVE YOU SEEN HOW MANY 4 AND 5 STAR CORNERBACKS AND RECIEVERS THE GATORS AND TIDE HAVE IN JUST THIS ONE CLASS…..AND THATS WHAT WE NEED THE MOST. A MILLION 4 AND 5 STAR WR’S AND A MILLION 4 AND 5 STAR CORNERBACKS…HERES A SECRET.THAT’S THE ONLY WAY TO BEAT THE GATORS, WITH A GREAT SECONDARY, WITH PLAYMAKERS AT EVERY POSITION, WHO CAN ALL RUN WELL…AND DON’T FORGET THE NAME OF THE GAME……DEPTH, DEPTH, DEPTH 4 AND 5 STAR DEPTH..

BG

February 9th, 2010
10:38 am

Dawgs will sign at least 3 receivers in 2011.

Bill King

February 9th, 2010
4:18 pm

Dawg Forever:

Figgins took a redshirt year and will be back for this coming season.

Relax Dawg Fans

February 9th, 2010
5:21 pm

Richt is a offensive coach, and a darn good one. Bobo is being taught by Richt his system but you don’t do that in two years. As our defense weakened, it makes perfect sense Richt left Bobo to practice his lesson’s while he spent some time addressing defensive problems. With our headcoach being an offensive side of the ball coach, we need a strong DC if we expect to be successful. Hopefully, now we do. Richt should have more time to get back to teaching his OC which should be good for dawg fans.

RED DOG 77

February 9th, 2010
11:45 pm

Relax Dawg Fans…….You are dead on the money my friend. CMR said clearly in an interview on 680 on signing day he intended to return to ‘hands on ‘ coaching, especially the O and QBs . While I am a huge CMR supporter, I think he learned his lesson with the ‘CEO’ thing the last couple years. There is no doubt in my mind that Todd Grantham is a top notch D man, and will have his troups ready come September. CMR won us a boat load of games when he was game planning and working with the QBs when he first got to UGA, so expect him to do the same in 2010. And to those who worry about the transition to the 3-4, remember it is an agressive, blitz, stunt, rip their heads off style D . That is exactly what young college kids love to do, blowem up on D . The D should be much more fun to play, and when it is fun ….watch out ! Just look at Alabama the last couple years, the kids on D were having a ball….thus motivated….UGA will have the swagger back game one….GO DOGS !!!! GATA

longtimedawgfan

February 10th, 2010
1:41 am

one thing we can appreciate about our highest profile receiver, A.J. Green,….rather than being a talker, he is a performer…hard to argue with that….

Jeffro Bodeen

February 12th, 2010
9:52 am

One name…..Rhett Mcgowan. Best hands on the team AHEAD of Kris Durham. Durham is bigger and faster, but in a must have, clutch situation, Mcgowan will be the best target. Mark it down where you heard it first!