Fan talk: Missouri looks dangerous and defense is a major liability for the Dawgs

Mizzou quarterback James Franklin is on a roll so far this season. (Associated Press)

Mizzou quarterback James Franklin is on a roll so far this season. (Associated Press)

Take a banged-up UGA offense that’s missing its two top running backs and three of its four top receivers, add a young defense that doesn’t appear to have figured how to slow down even the SEC’s worst offense, and top it off with special teams that have a penchant for meltdowns producing points for the other side.

Put that up against an undefeated team whose offense has turned out to be one of the nation’s best while the team has gone undefeated, albeit feasting so far on nonconference cupcakes and a faltering Vandy.

The result? That Georgia-Missouri game in Athens that was supposed to provide some sort of respite for the Dogs after a schedule frontloaded with Top 10 teams now looks to be a much bigger challenge for the Dogs than originally envisioned. In fact, the point spread favoring Georgia dropped three points over the past few days and quite a few college football observers are predicting an upset.

There’s no doubt that, on paper, Mizzou looks like a very dangerous matchup for Georgia’s ailing offense and floundering defense. With quarterback James Franklin finally healthy this season, the Tigers’ uptempo spread offense is second in the SEC in scoring (46.6), first in the conference in rushing (258.8) and fourth in passing (285.0). Franklin is second to Johnny Football in total offense, racking up 337 yards per game. He’s thrown for 1,407 yards and 13 touchdowns, with just three interceptions, and the Missouri QB also has run for 278 yards and two TDs.

Yes, another mobile dual-threat quarterback who so far seems more like Clemson’s Tajh Boyd than South Carolina’s Connor Shaw. He also has tall, talented receivers in Dorial Green-Beckham, L’Damian Washington and Marcus Lewis. And he’s going up against a Georgia team that ranks last in the SEC in scoring defense, last in third-down defense, 12th in pass defense, 11th in red zone defense and 10th in total defense.

It also doesn’t help that a noon kickoff probably will negate much of the Bulldogs’ home advantage, as Sanford Stadium crowds tend to be slow to arrive and have trouble getting cranked up without a few hours to ingest their bourbon and fried chicken.

Does anything about this matchup look advantageous to Georgia? Well, there’s the X factor that Vanderbilt is the toughest team Mizzou has played so far, while Georgia will be meeting its fourth ranked opponent of the season. So we don’t know how good the Tigers really are while we know the Dogs are up to a challenge.

Can Aaron Murray carry his team to another SEC win? (Jason Getz / AJC)

Can Aaron Murray carry his team to another SEC win? (Jason Getz / AJC)

And then there’s Aaron Murray, who this season has proved to be the kind of clutch quarterback who seemingly wills his team to win with late-game scoring drives.

While Missouri, which is plus-5 in turnovers, has an ace pass rusher in Michael Sam (who had three sacks against Vandy last week and has six for the season) and the Tigers have snagged 11 picks, second in the nation behind Virginia Tech, Murray will be going up against a defense that has still allowed an SEC-worst 293.8 yards per game passing and 412.4 yards of total offense per game (11th in the conference). And that’s playing the likes of Murray State, Toledo, Indiana and Arkansa State in addition to the Dores.

Can Georgia win another shootout playing without Keith Marshall, Justin Scott-Wesley, Michael Bennett and (probably) Todd Gurley? If the offensive line holds up and Murray and play caller Mike Bobo are on their game, yes, especially if they get the tight ends more involved in the passing game.

But if the Dogs suffer another special teams disaster …  well, let’s just hope it doesn’t come to that.

In the meantime, if you’re going to the game, the athletic association is pleading for you to arrive early, wear red, and be loud.

Now, let’s get to some of this week’s Junkyard Mail. …

Pete Talmadge writes: Bill, I have gone from an euphoric high after beating LSU to a near coma after seeing UGA snatch victory from the jaws of defeat once again. Thank you, Mr. Murray. At this point, I know we are vulnerable and any team on our schedule could beat us on a given Saturday. Two things are clear to me: First, our failure to put teams away, a trademark of the Richt/Bobo years, must stop now, especially given our porous defense. We had UT on the ropes in the 3rd quarter by 14 and Bobo went into a “run up the gut” shell and we ended up getting zero points and giving UT the momentum to make it tough on us. Secondly, the heat is now on Grantham — big time.  This wasn’t a Top 10 team or, I suspect, a very good one, but our inability to make stops and our trend of giving up big plays in the clutch is becoming embarrassing. We have good athletes; at some point it comes down to coaching (defense) and lack of killer instinct (offense) that are now glaring weaknesses in our program.

Pete, you’re right that the third quarter of the UT game wasn’t an example of Bobo at his best. He does tend to go conservative at the worst times. But that last Georgia scoring drive in regulation against the Vols was prime Bobo/Murray. As for Grantham, well, read on …

A lot of UGA fans are questioning the performance of Todd Grantham. (Associated Press)

A lot of UGA fans are questioning the performance of Todd Grantham. (Associated Press)

Trey Jarrard writes: Bill, I was a big Todd Grantham fan until last year. We put multiple guys in the pros from our defense but four times gave up 28 points or more. It’s great to pitch shut outs against Vandy, Kentucky, or shutdown an anemic Florida offense, but we gave up 28 points to a poor Nebraska team and over 40 to a pathetic Tennessee team, and everyone knows what happened in Columbia. I know we lost a lot of players to the NFL, but with our recruiting classes and Grantham having been in Athens 4 years shouldn’t we at least be able to stop North Texas? It just seems like the defense is trending in the wrong direction and that includes last year. With all that said, hats off to Murray, Bobo, and CMR, the offense has been incredible and I’m proud of the Dawgs.

Along the same lines, Jack H. writes: Bill, I love the Dogs and live and die with them. But in my mind the great Todd Grantham experiment needs to be axed. I realize the D is young but they are also stocked with tier 1 talent. With many of them playing last year and all of them now with 5 games under their belts it is ridiculous that UTs offense could pile up 400 yards of offense. No one watching had any doubt that the only way Georgia was going to win the game was with a critical UT mistake, which we got in OT. Even last year, loaded with NFL talent, the D had plenty of letdowns and never lived up to their potential. That’s all on Grantham. And halftime adjustments? Please.

Fan sentiment definitely has turned against Grantham this season if my mail and the online chat UGA athletic director Greg McGarity had the other day are any indication. Most of the chat was the usual fluffy stuff, but Grantham was the subject of some pointed queries. As “Bart” put it: “With Coach Grantham now making $825,000/year, do you feel it’s fair to expect him to at the very least field a team in year 4 that does not resemble a Chinese Fire Drill pre-snap? … And I think it’s also fair to say that youth cannot be used as an excuse, considering last year’s upper class-led defense faced the exact same problems week in and week out. Thoughts?”

McGarity didn’t take the bait, offering the expected response: “We are very confident in Todd’s ability to lead our defense.” I think it’s fair to say everyone understands Georgia’s defense lost a lot of talent to the NFL after last season. And because of recruiting failures and disciplinary losses (Nick Marshall and Chris Sanders), the defensive secondary entered this year with only one experienced player (Damian Swann). He’s not having a great year so far, either — even Mark Richt said this week that Swann is “struggling.” But back to Grantham. Above, Jack touched on a particular sore point in the Georgia defensive coordinator’s unwillingness (or inability) so far this season to make successful second-half adjustments to what the other side is doing. And the lack of pressure the Dogs are applying in key third-down situations is baffling when you consider how vulnerable the secondary is. Fundamentals (tackling, especially) also have been lacking on defense. I said before the season started that Grantham finally would have to earn those big bucks this year, but, frankly, we’re still waiting to see him do it.

Mike Murphy writes: Bill, Why am I not hearing anything about A.J. [Turman] this week? One would think he should be playing from here on out. Wasn’t he a 4 star recruit coming out if high school? Please tell me he’s not redshirting … there is no advantage to that with Michel and Chubb coming in next year.

Turman, whose progress was slowed by a preseason injury, got more work in practice this week and Richt said Georgia would consider playing him, and he knows the running back is “anxious” to get into a game. The longer Gurley stays out, the greater the odds that Turman won’t be redshirted, I think.

Keith Mccants writes: With injuries to Georgia’s wide receiver core, is it now the time for injured JC WR transfer Jonathan Rumph to step up for the Dogs for their stretch run toward a return to Atlanta?

I’m sure the Georgia coaches would love to add G-Day star Rumph to the mix, but a nagging hamstring injury hasn’t allowed that so far.

Barbara Sarco writes: Bill, thank you for all you do! I love your columns and the platform you afford us Dawg fans! I’ve never been impressed with Grantham’s defense, but is it me or did I see Herrera (#52) miss a ton of tackles in the Tennessee game? Anyway a win is a win! Go Dawgs. Murray was truly amazing.

Thanks, Barbara. Like a lot of Dog defenders, Amarlo Herrera has had his share of missed tackles this season, but against Tennessee he had 11 tackles (three solo and eight assists), so he’s still been a mainstay of the linebacking corps.

John Thomas Rawl writes: Bill, let me first start off by saying I’m a personal trainer, so rehab, prehab, and injury prevention are of keen importance to me. I’m fully aware of the physical nature of the game and the freak accidents that occur; that being said, I wonder how much work the strength and conditioning program includes for tendons, ligaments, and extensibility. I’m especially bothered by the amount of non-contact (pre-dominantly ACL) injuries that have been occurring, i.e. Mitchell, Bennett, Wesley, etc. There is a laundry list of exercise a mile long to focus on stability, extensibility, proprioception, and overall, joint health. It always seems like the injury bug bites Georgia especially hard, and I’ve heard field condition might have been an issue but this is far from an isolated occurrence, (even going back to Bennett last year, and Sturdivant for a couple years in a row) I don’t ever hear about other programs having such attrition due to injuries. Might this be an indication of poor programming?

Actually, Georgia is far from alone in suffering ACL injuries. It’s one of the most common college football injuries. Just recently, Texas A&M defensive tackle Kirby Enis, Michigan DT Ondre Pipkins, Boise State running back Aaron Baltazar, Florida DT Dominique Easley and Clemson wide receiver Charone Peake have all been lost for the season with ACL tears. And Peake’s came during a noncontact drill. Dr. Tarek O. Souryal of the Texas Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Group says there are between 250,000 and 300,000 ACL injuries per year and there’s really no good way to prevent them, though stretching and cross-training can help. Believe me, if there was a way for Georgia’s strength and conditioning staff to prevent these tears, they’d be doing it.

A couple of letter writers expressed frustration this week that Georgia has lost a couple of star players to injury while they were playing on special teams. Tommy Gentry Jr. writes: I still havent seen anyone ask Richt why Justin Scott-Wesley was playing on punt coverage. I understand speed and depth etc. However, it doesn’t make sense to me to have your second leading WR playing on punt coverage. I know UGA has more depth and athletes than to risk the type of injury that happened to JSW on that freak play. In my opinion he should have never been out there playing on punt coverage.

Richt is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t when it comes to playing starters on special teams. One of the chief complaints about Georgia’s special teams in past years was that they were stocked with slower, less talented walk-ons. Starters tend to be better athletes. Yes, playing starters on special teams increases the risk of injury, but as Malcolm Mitchell proved you can be lost for the season just celebrating. I don’t think pulling starters off the punt or kickoff coverage teams would be a good idea at all.

Kevin Cone writes: The current attention to Peyton Manning reminds me of his career at Tennessee. Whenever he and the Volunteers played Georgia, he played like a man possessed. The Bulldogs, my beloved Bulldogs, could not stop him. It was frustrating. It was embarrassing.  It was painful. Peyton’s Vols beat the Dawgs for four straight years. Much like Peyton, Aaron Murray, Georgia’s current quarterback, will complete his career at UGA at the top of nearly every passing record in SEC history. Last Saturday in Knoxville, Aaron and the Dawgs beat the Vols for the fourth straight year. He played like a man possessed. The Vols could not stop him. It was frustrating. It was embarrassing. It was painful. Payback is sweet. Go Dawgs!

Woof!

Joe Burger writes: Hey Bill, first off, thoughts and prayers with our hurt players, really tough watching those injuries. Second, what courage displayed by Murray — words can’t describe his play so far this season. Third, I thought it was a question of “when” our defense would get it, now I think it’s a question of “if” our defense will get it. Coach Grantham’s schemes are not cutting it … enough excuses, it’s time for our defense to play like champions. Fourth and finally, Coach Richt, we as UGA fans/faithful hold you to an impossibly high standard, we know, but … please coach, we’re begging you, get our punting fixed.

The punting disasters so far this season have either been a result of bad snaps (which seems to have been fixed), wrong protection schemes called on the field, or players whiffing on their blocks. Execution, in other words. I don’t know what the answer is to that, but if the Georgia coaching staff doesn’t figure it out soon, a promising season quickly could implode.

Eric Zeier (left) and Scott Howard of the Georgia football broadcast team. (University of Georgia)

Eric Zeier (left) and Scott Howard of the Georgia football broadcast team. (University of Georgia)

Steve Upshaw writes: I loved Scott [Howard] as the color guy on the radio broadcast, and I do realize how hard it is to follow a true legend, but Scott is not the answer long term. He’s so vanilla and without any flavor. There is nothing unique about him. During a big play, his voice always breaks and he just cannot paint the picture in the listeners mind. … Eric Zeier is so much better than Scott. I know Scott loves the Dogs, as we all do, but he simply isn’t suited to do play-by-play. I know it’s easier to point out a problem than to offer a solution, but it is one I believe should be addressed. I believe Chuck [Dowdle] would do a fantastic job and could grow into it and actually be outstanding. God knows Scott is a DGD, and should be respected, but after this much time behind the microphone, at least to me, has proven he isn’t up to the task.

While Howard is not another Larry Munson and you probably aren’t going to find many fans wanting to buy collections of his most memorable calls, I think he’s head and shoulders above Dowdle, whose softball interviewing makes even vanilla play-by-play seem tasty. I do think Zeier’s analysis has improved tremendously over the past five years. And I agree that while his excitement shows how much a fan Howard is, it would be great if he could call a Georgia touchdown without sounding like his nickname should be Screech.

Keith R. Crownover writes: Hey Bill, Full disclosure: I am a Yellow Jacket and occasionally read your blog — good read by the way. After reading [about] the black jersey I thought why not wear them for the last game every year regardless of location as Tech prefers the white jersey anyway and must ask permission from the visiting team to do so at home. Oh, and it would seem fitting as y’all have owned us for so long now so it’s like going to a funeral every year anyway. Just a suggestion from a brother from another “school.”

Thanks, Keith. I see you’re a realist! That’s an interesting suggestion and certainly would be a satisfactory way of allowing the players to wear the black jerseys they crave without turning it into an overhyped Blackout affair.

That’s it for this week. Remember, show up early Saturday!

Go Dogs!

Got something you want to discuss concerning the Dawgs? Or a question you want the Junkyard Blawg to tackle? Email me at  junkyardblawg@gmail.com.

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— Bill King, Junkyard Blawg

172 comments Add your comment

LuckyDawg

October 11th, 2013
9:47 am

Just hope my Lady Luck shows up on time. I’ve got a feeling we’re gonna need her there for this one!

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
9:51 am

Lucky
Keep her at the house. The Dawgs will prove how resilient they are in this one. Take the Dawgs -8

CHDawg

October 11th, 2013
9:53 am

Great column. I think CMB has done a good job this year, but I agree he has a tendency to become conservative and predictable when he gets 14 or so points under his belt. He needs to analyze his calls and success. How many drives do we get when we are up? Seems like a lot more three and outs. I would like to see him come out firing when he gets 14 up. If you can’t get aggressive with Murray, when will you get aggressive? Again though, Bobo has been brilliant at times this year, so let’s keep it in perspective. CTG just has a young D…that is it. The front seven are getting there, although this week will be another tough test. The back end has to get better fast. Slant city this week. Go Dawgs.

LuckyDawg

October 11th, 2013
9:57 am

@ARdawg

Yeah… I’ll “book it”, but I’m still wearing my lucky underwear – just in case! ;-)

Irked UGA fan, alumnus

October 11th, 2013
10:01 am

Maybe Gardner should have remained at UGa and TG left the program. If Gardner grew soft, we now know why. He as passed over as D Coordinator was this guy?

CMR either had long term issues with Gardner or he was pressed by the alumni an AD to hiring his third choice, CTG.

Now we know why Sabin encouraged Richt to interview TG.

UGA man, class of 71&73

DreiländereckDog

October 11th, 2013
10:05 am

Wasn’t so long ago many in the Bulldog Nation were calling for Mike Bobo’s head on a platter. Last year it was Marshall Morgan. This year, it’s Todd Grantham. A few years ago it was CMR himself.

Grantham knows what he’s doing and what needs to be done. Defensive lapses surely are frustrating, but the Dogs’ D has stopped the likes of South Carolina, LSU, and Tennessee in their tracks when need be.

Everybody, take a deep breath and calm down.

Pago Pago Dawg

October 11th, 2013
10:06 am

Actually , Missouri didn’t feast on The Rockets, TOL had a chance to win in Columbia.
Actually, with ten top ten recruiting classes over the years….UGA should have No problem. Or is it …coaching?

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:09 am

I read a very interest review of the game by one of the other writers, after watching the replay sans the emotions.

Pointed out that the run game was still producing, and in fact was what actually set up the scores in the 3rd and 4th quarter. So conservative, yes, But when you lose your primary weapons and the running game was still working well enough to help, why would you have wanted to abandoned that, and gone one dimensional? We likely would have lost doing that.

UGA Insider

October 11th, 2013
10:12 am

Let me start by saying I am extremely worried about this game. Our inability to stop anyone on 3rd down has me concerned along with our lack of depth at receiver. ST’s is a constant worry every week. I also worry the team may be emotionally drained from our schedule. Mizzou has played cream-puffs.

Mizzou is going to do what UT did. They are going to stack the line and dare us to throw.
With that said I’m also worried Bobo is going to try to milk clock and play keep away. This I fear will be a disaster. I personally think Bobo should throw it 50 times and throw deep and to our TE’s who are constantly open but rarely thrown to. If we are not aggressive we will lose, simple as that.

UGA 49
Mizzou 44

I hope!

Castel Pines Canine

October 11th, 2013
10:16 am

I think is a nice synopsis Bill. I still think that the UT bounty program needs to be investigated. If we just go back a year, and just players I can think of, and not those others that may be out there, Lattimore, Driskell Marshall, and the two other UGA players and UF players hurt in the legs playing UT.

UGA has a very young defense. They have some real players that are 18 years old. Floyd and Mauger got beat last week on young mistakes. CTG should have known that UT could go wide that one time. Freshman mistake by Mauger on the tight end pass.

Who is back this week. Just one D player can make a difference. UT was said to have the best offensive and defensive fronts in the league early on this year. It appears they were last Saturday.

I think that we need to figure out a way to move slowly, even if passing. If we can keep the defense off of the field, we will be all the better for it. I think the first 11 are capable of playing with anyone, but after that, they are really inexperienced. I think that they were warn out in that UT game in the 4th quarter. I think that they should have gone man on that bunch pass play. That play ate our lunch all day.

Maybe a time for wilddog formation, oh wait, we don’t have anyone left to run it.

Castle Pines Canine

October 11th, 2013
10:21 am

Everybody says that we can’t stop anyone on third down. Well we did stop Clemson to get into position to tie or win the game. We did stop South Carolina to win the game. We did stop LSU to win the game. Technically we stopped UT to win the game. If you look at UGA D, they are giving up 28 points a game, when you take off the blocked kicks (Special Teams), KO return for TD (Special Teams). That is a lot, but they have played 4 of the most prolific offensive teams in the country.

GO DOGS.

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
10:24 am

Altamaha
I think if Bobo would use a bit more imagination in the run game rather than 3 straight up the gut and punt, folks might not get so irked

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:27 am

I think if you will go back and actually look at the play selection in that second half, just “run up the gut” is not even close to accurate. That’s probably the least of what they did. JJ Green average something like 8 yrd a carry in that half, with multiple big gains. And the run pass mix was there.

In fact, about the only series where we just obviously went conservative for the sake of ball safety was when we had it on our own 14. I don’t have an issue with it, at that point. Ya wouldn’t think our starting fullback (of all people) would whiff on his block and give up the blocked punt.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:28 am

He didn’t do that, is why I point that out to… folks. .
Not sure he did that even one time, in fact.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:30 am

http://www.georgiadogs.com/sports/m-footbl/stats/2013-2014/uga1305.html#GAME.IND

here is the link, scroll down to the 3rd quarter, and tell me where Bobo just started conceding 3 runs and punting.

McDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:31 am

Herrera did not have a good game which played a big part in the 2nd half

the minute we missed the field goal you could see the defense just standing there and not reacting to plays–i’m still optimistic about the direction of the D-my biggest concern is D. Swann–

D really needs to start forcing some turnovers and gain some momentum

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
10:36 am

Altamaha
I was referring to the 2nd quarter on the3rd, 4th and 5th drives of the game. The Vols were daring us to throw and stacking the box. Murray had been passing at will. We scored the first two drives mixing it up well. Then Bobo keeps it on the ground and between the tackles. Almost as if it got a lead and went into a fetal position in the press box. Play calling was a big was a momentum killer at that point in the game

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:36 am

Very sad and disappointing that Murray will leave UGA without winning a championship! To many injuries this year folks….the defense is playing like a broken record….just horrible over and over again! Special teams have giving up basically 4 td’s this year……oh well I’ve finally just accepted the fact we aren’t as good as we should be and maybe never will be!

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:39 am

Georgia had the ball 6 times in the second half.
2 td, and a missed FG were 3 of them. all nice drives.

the blocked punt was one. Uber concervative s, from our own 14. So count that. (from our 14 nursing a lead with our third receiver just gone out)

the other 2 were punts, as a result of incomplete passes (and a sack) .

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
10:39 am

I haven’t went back and watched the game again and that is from memory but, I remember gnashing my teeth thinking W!T!F? Why not go for the throat? Alas. to no avail

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:39 am

Very frustrating that we have to start a freshmen at CB and SS! I guess Dawson and Corey Moore are just not going to get it done….we should just move Dawson to kick returner or WR…I mean he can run can’t he? Instead of the coaches wasting his scholarship on the bench.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:48 am

Ah ok, the topic was the 3rd and forth qt. which I was responding to. I assumed you were too.

Ok,
the 3rd drive, we ran on 1st down, passed on second, ran on 3rd, so count that as concervative
the 4th drive we scored a TD
the 5th drive was 3 straight passes. .

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:48 am

Dream team 2011 mixed results…

Jay Rome – back up

Isaiah Crowell – kicked off team

Damian swann- good one year…now struggling

Chris sanders- kicked off team

Nick Marshall- kicked off team

Sanford seay- kicked off team

Malcolm Mitchell – injury prone career……….

Ray drew…just now coming around………………

Corey Moore- bust…………see folks this is why we haven’t won the sec yet…our best players never stay on the field long enough due to injury or just not living up to the hype. After reading this…a lot of you need to lower your expectations!

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:51 am

I just don’t see where the offense is going o come from….we nobody left to beat miizzou……..oh well I can’t wait for the peach bowl…..UGA vs Maryland are to be a good one! I just hope they won’t be as good as Tennessee though.

Castle Pines Canine

October 11th, 2013
10:54 am

Bobo haters take this as a lesson!

Aaron Murray drives. Who was the QB Coach? Bobo

Aaron Murray passes. Who was the QB Coach? Bobo

All the great plays we marvel about, who was the OC? Bobo.

Have there been some bad calls, yes, but this year, save a fumble on Special Teams against Clemson, our O has been top shelf.

The D has made the stops this year, when the back was against the wall. There were some Erk teams like that too! 1980 comes to mind. 1976 also.

Missouri will not be an issue………. for long anyway. Vandy is sitting there mad and needing to prove something. That is our real trap game. The only good news is that it is in the daytime, and Gurley might be back.

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:54 am

UGA insider….

Their is no way we score 49 points this week…..we all better hope Grantham can teach the boys how to line up by noon tomorrow or peach bowl here we come!

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
10:56 am

See…even bill king agreed with me that we went conservative in the 3 rd quarter! We need an OC that will finish a team off when we have a 14 point lead in the 2 nd half…

CHDawg

October 11th, 2013
10:56 am

Altdawg, we ran effectively in the third at times, but we were conservative and predictable. Seven runs in a row on one drive. We kept running until TN loaded the box enough to stop us. The next set we started with runs, too. The point is calling what the defense isn’t prepared to stop. Maybe calling some passes on first and draws and screens on third? Pounding the rock is great when it puts points on the board. It didn’t in the third. I also think we need to throw it long a few times just to keep the DCs honest. Murray is one of the best I have seen, and I would bet opposing DCs fear the long pass from UGA and breathe a sigh of relief when we don’t use it. The challenge is getting Murray time with 8 in the box…how about rolling him out some? You do make good points, though.

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
10:59 am

Altamaha
Correct me if I am wrong but wasn’t the forth drive when the FG attempt hit the upright after 7 straight runs?

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
11:00 am

I know most would disagree with this….but I wish we had Isaiah Crowell for this game…I mean gee…he even had the charges dropped…..imagine this lineup this year…
1. Gurley

2. Crowell

3. Marshall

4. JJ green……we would be unstoppable….thanks!

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:02 am

See, I don’t get that very late in the 1st quarter , up 10-0 with your #1 RB not dressed, and your #2 just got carted off the field ……..as a “go for the throat” moment. A little regroup would seem to be in order. (I’d be willing to bet that’s what you would o if you were in that booth)

It took all of one series to get it going again and then go up 17-3. I don’t see where the wtf was coming into it.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:05 am

you mean a series of runs that started off with gains of: 7,12, 4, and 32?
that was in the 3rd quarter.

and we threw to JSW on 3rd down before attempting the FG.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:10 am

Guys I am not disagreeing with the theory. But just as sure as we had just started flinging it, everyone would be asking, why did we stop running the ball more when it was working.

and frankly your recollections simply do not match up with the actual plays.

take out a blocked punt, and a couple of terrible official calls, and we are probably bragging On how we ran the ball in the second half.

Bulldawg35

October 11th, 2013
11:11 am

Who cares what it was…bobo should of had Murray try throw for a first down once we got down to the 25 yard line……you people are indulging in to much kool – aid.

7576DAWG

October 11th, 2013
11:13 am

UGA Insider
I actually agree with you. Teams are learning to bring everybody into the box and stop the run. It’s not quit as easy as last year but many times it real obvious when we are going to run the ball. I think that we should set up the run by passing the ball more. This will keep the middle from being blocked off. It will be interesting to see if Missouri can handle play action. If not Murray may need to roll out of the pocket a lot in this game. Missouri will blitz a lot and try to over power our blockers. Quick slants and screen passes will limit their success with the blitz.
The key to this game will be turnovers. If we have no turnovers I don’t think Missouri can stay with us. Georgia wins by 10 but if we start turning the ball over this could end up a lot closer than it should be.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:14 am

I just don’t see how late in the 1st quarter up 10-0. #1 RB not dressed, and #2 just got carted off , is exactly a “go for the throat” moment. Both from a game time, and a situational standpoint.

I’m guessing to, if you were sitting in that booth, and just put a freshman RB out there, that giving everybody ONE series to regroup would not seem too unreasonable.

dawgfan

October 11th, 2013
11:17 am

It’s hard to imagine our defense slowing down Missouri after what we’ve witnessed so far.

Jerry Seinfeld

October 11th, 2013
11:18 am

I’m losing more faith in Todd Grantham each week, but… keep in mind that you can’t say his defense have always been terrible. He hasn’t lived up to the hype, but in 2012, we had a pretty solid secondary and a porous run defense. Our defense was certainly underachieving last year, but they at least forced a lot of turnovers. Rambo and Jarvis Jones were turnover machines. In 2011, we actually had one of the very best run defenses in the nation (which a lot of people don’t realize after our horrific run defense last season). So it’s not fair to say that we’ve always had poor run defenses under Grantham since we had a very good one in 2011 that held star Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell to about 50 yards rushing and a couple of SEC teams to negative rushing totals.

That being said, if things don’t improve soon, I would be happy to see Grantham get the axe. Sadly, Richt doesn’t fire staff until they’ve absolutely proved they are terrible (Willie Martinez and a couple of other assistant coaches being a good example). So, even if our defense under performs(again), I doubt he will get fired after the season. Maybe an NFL team will somehow hire him as DC. He did get interviewed last year despite the poor results. Let’s hope the same thing happens this season.

McDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:22 am

i was wondering where Seay was

Jerry Seinfeld

October 11th, 2013
11:25 am

“take out a blocked punt, and a couple of terrible official calls, and we are probably bragging On how we ran the ball in the second half.”

And that is why this ridiculousness on special teams had to freaking stop. Morgan can’t be blamed for missing his field goal when he made another one from 56 and the game-winning kick… but the punt blocking has been atrocious. Look at Mark Richt’s career at UGA and you’ll realize his teams don’t have many punts blocked. This year, they have. I still can’t believe Hicks missed that block so badly. And did Richt change the snapper temporarily or for good? I know he pulled a snapper for struggling against North Texas.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:29 am

35, he DID try to throw for the first down. JSW. It was incomplete. We were 4 wide and trying to convert. Just like we were 4 wide and trying, before the delay penalty, made it 3rd and 14.

I actually liked the 2nd down call. Spread the field and tried to drag the RB thru. BTW, I suspect Murray had full authority to decide if he had somebody open on the outside , there.

Jerry Seinfeld

October 11th, 2013
11:29 am

Generally, Bobo calls a good game but I don’t understand why he becomes overly conservative on third downs on some drives. I mean, we are down our top two running backs and have one of the best quarterbacks in the entire country!! With Murray as a quarterback and our top running backs injured, why not pass it? But you can’t get too mad at Bobo considering our offense played so well the netire season.

Castle Pines Canine

October 11th, 2013
11:29 am

Thank goodness that we have cool heads in the Coaches Box, on the sidelines, and on the field. Ladies and Gentlemen, at least this year, when the offense has lost it’s top 5 threats, the offense is not a problem. So instead of being all over the O, be all over the D and Special Teams. So let’s not forget this either. The D made a key stop, and then the stupid penalty on the special teams gave UT a chance to make a first down which they did with much authority. So before we blow off everyone for winning, just not good enough. Let’s place the blames in the correct places. It surely is not with the offense.

Defense has made the stops, albeit at the last minute, and special teams has cost us one game, and let other teams into two others.

ARdawg

October 11th, 2013
11:30 am

Altamaha
In many games a “go for the throat” moment isn’t even an option. When it is an option IMHO we should pounce. We didn’t. We were up two scores and moving the ball well even after Marshalls injury but the play calling did get ultra conservo. I can only assume because of the young players unfamiliar with the play book and Bobo playing to not make a mistake rather than take some risks and get the score.

I did believe at the half we should have been up 24 points. But I can be overly optimistic.

dawgfan

October 11th, 2013
11:30 am

Richt won’t fire Grantham until we go 6-7 or something like that. As long as we’re winning 10 games a year all assistants are safe, regardless how bad they are at their jobs. That’s how it’s been with Richt. That’s why we can’t win championships.

dawgfan

October 11th, 2013
11:32 am

Special teams cost us the 38 points that Clemson scored on us?

Interesting perspective.

Jerry Seinfeld

October 11th, 2013
11:34 am

Missouri’s pass defense is probably even worse than ours considering who they have played thus far. And our pass defense made even a mediocre quarterback in Justin Worley look good. It looks like another shootout is one the horizon. Let’s hope that Bobo implements some short passes and power run game on occasion to keep Franklin off the field. It could go either way, but I think the difference is that Georgia has the game at home. Go dawgs!!

Jerry Seinfeld

October 11th, 2013
11:40 am

Grantham, please start blitzing on third down! I know our secondary is playing poorly, but a three-man rush defense DOESN’T work. The only time I remember it working was when Ray Drew got a sack, but he had to beat a double-team to do so. It’s proven to be a pathetic defense and Willie Martinez made a habit of rushing three on third down. How did that work out for him? It was a big reason his pass defense were horrific, especially against quarterbacks who are patient in the pocket. Also, LSU used a lot of three-man rushes against Aaron Murray and he picked them apart. I repeat, they DO NOT work, so I wish more people would realize that.

Flo-Ri-Duh

October 11th, 2013
11:41 am

To early to say Corey Moore is a bust. Only played in 4-5 games.

Can’t blame Richt or Grantham for actions of Nick Marshall and Sanders. They did not come in with any red flags.

Sine Dawgs played Mizzou last year there is some familiarity with their offense. Better adjustments must be made to protect against the perimeter offense. Doing well up the middle against the run but must do better against sweeps and swing passes.

The special teams may not have Colin Barber punting this week… he is 50/50.
The blocked punt was a combination of Hicks not holding his block long enough and the punter being one second to slow. 48 yard punts are great unless they get blocked.

Expect UGA’s OL will play their best game of the year…. MUST get good yardage on 1st down

Dawgs did play 3 quarters last week with freshmen RBs and backup WRs and came through.
Should be a shootout and Murray is Matt Dillon.

AltamahaDawg

October 11th, 2013
11:42 am

Your entire point is based that we didn’t score on every single possession in the first half, (after putting in #3 RB) AND we lined up and scored a TD the very next possession. 17-3. Its not like he “sat” on the ball. What more could he do there?

I think you guys give Coach Bobo WAY too much credit for controlling every thing that happens on the field.