Offense Stumbles, Defense Crumbles in Loss

A few thoughts after a long, hot afternoon on the Flats.

The Good

  • Nice tailgating scene…lots of people and families out before the game enjoying a sunny afternoon.
  • BJ Bostic looks good and needs to play more.
  • Orwin Smith looks good and needs to get more carries.
  • Kick off returns looked good, with the returner often getting into the second level of coverage.
  • Tarrant’s pick-6, drawing the Jackets within three points, was an excellent play.

The Bad

  • We still have some guys on defense who can’t tackle.
  • We still have some guys on offense who can’t block or catch.

The Ugly (a product of not tackling, catching, or blocking…)

  • A blocked GT punt that was recovered for a NCSU TD.
  • 45 points, 27 first downs, 527 yards of total offense, and a seven minute TOP advantage to NCSU.
  • The Jackets were 4 / 14 on third down conversations and 1 / 4 on fourth down conversions.
  • Four fumbles for GT, two of which were lost.
  • After pulling within 3 points at 31-28 with about 12 minutes left on the clock, the Jackets fell apart and lost 45-28

News Flash!

We’re not a very good football team right now.

We’re one dimensional on offense and we aren’t executing our bread and butter.  Can’t block.  Can’t run.

We’re lost at times on defense and aren’t executing on third down.  Can’t tackle.  Can’t cover.

So What Now?

It is what it is.  All we can do is suck it up and go week by week and hope we play better as the defense sorts things out.

I certainly hope we see guys like Bostic (#4) and Smith (#17) getting more offensive snaps if the guys ahead of them can’t break tackles or make things happen when they have the ball.

I certainly hope we see guys like Attachou (#45) and Burnett (#40) get more snaps at linebacker if the guys ahead of them can’t make plays in the running game.

Looking Ahead

We have a chance to get to 5-2 if we can execute decently in the next three games @Wake Forest, Virginia, and Middle Tennessee State.   After that, it gets brutal…@Clemson, @Virginia Tech, and Miami.  We may be looking at a 5-5 record when Duke comes to visit.  That puts us at a likely 6-5 when we travel to UGA.

As bad as UGA looks right now, the final game of the season may be a battle of attrition where the “least worst” team escapes with a win.

Here’s a sobering thought…

If we don’t get our offense and defense sorted out, we could be looking at something like a 6-6 record and sitting home during bowl season.  Could we miss a bowl just one year removed from an ACC title and with a senior QB under center?

Even Chan Gailey’s teams never slipped that far…how is that for sobering thoughts?

Go Jackets!

67 comments Add your comment

HSV Jacket

September 25th, 2010
9:36 pm

Honeymoon’s over, CPJ. Time to show us the genius we keep hearing about.

lucky21

September 25th, 2010
9:43 pm

CT_Jacket

September 25th, 2010
9:55 pm

I was concerned when so many young players were competing in the pre-season camp for starting spots over the seniors. IMHO, It sounds like a little bit of rebuilding. Funny, people thought that not having Gailey’s recruits after this season would be PJ’s downfall. However, CG only had one very good recruiting class and the best of that one are gone. His remnants aren’t able to compete with PJ’s younger classes. I think that everything will be okay in 2-3 years as his classes become juniors and seniors.

SGG

September 25th, 2010
10:03 pm

CT_Jacket

You hit the nail on the head…

Brian

September 25th, 2010
10:13 pm

Offense isn’t our problem. Although the stupid mutts who don’t know better make asinine (look it up) comments about that – they really don’t know any better. Even with a horrible outing, the offense put up points. Not as many as it should have, but 21 isn’t the end of the world. Now the d is the end of the world. I’m just baffled as to why we call the plays we do. If we can’t cover, at least blitz. When we did today, we got some big plays. And the backers are horrid. And playing 10 to 15 yard cushions on the wideouts???

Savannah Fan

September 25th, 2010
11:34 pm

Keep the faith-Tech still ha a chance at the best record in state -not including Ga Southern-Valdosta -etc!!!!

GT FANATIC

September 26th, 2010
12:27 am

Nesbitt for Heisman, CPJ for Coach of the Year, GT for BCSNC.

G.P Burdell

September 26th, 2010
12:51 am

OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD

G.P Burdell

September 26th, 2010
12:54 am

But they said he was a genius! they said Groh was a defense guru! ‘Genius’ Johnson said he had depth at every position!

Start Over

September 26th, 2010
1:46 am

agree about Bostic and Orwin, they looked good. I am hoping CPJ will take a look at one of them running in the BBack position more often. On the 2nd fumble by Allen, it is time to bench him or move him back to Aback. CPJ should hold tryouts for the starting BBack on Sunday. Nice effort by Roddy with good blocking for the others to score TD’s. I do feel Allen is utilized well on the short passes though. Wish some more players could help Nesbitt out. Jefferson and Tarrant looked awesome, the rest was a shame on D. If the defense is too complicated for this team to comprehend, can you make it simpler? Hope Bedford will be back. What a disaster

Zzzzzzzzzzzzz

September 26th, 2010
7:13 am

CT Jacket is dead nuts correct! Also, IMHO, Groh is taking far too much criticism. The guy didn’t forget how to coach defense…we are very lucky to have him. Gotta give the guy something to work with.

tony

September 26th, 2010
7:21 am

The bottom line is that it’s the players that play, not the coaches.The coaches can’t run, throw or tackle. You can prepare a team and drill the basics into them, but if they don’t execute, it will not work. The players have got to do a better job executing or it is going to be a long season.

George P. Burdell

September 26th, 2010
8:08 am

I honestly cannot tell if its more a lack of talent or a lack of desire at this point. We clearly have some personnel issues but it just seems like this team shows up, punches the clock, and have no heart. The defense actually played pretty well to start things off but the offense, in particular the line, was getting beaten right from the start. That QB is way to good to keep giving him the ball. I think the main problem on defense is we do not have the speed at outside lineback you need to run the 3-4 and teams have figured it out. I hope our future recruiting will address that problem but at this pace the coaching staff may not be around to see them develop into starters.

bob horner

September 26th, 2010
8:14 am

if you compare ncstates players to ours it is a no contest, we have better players and higher rated players. Their qb was a 2 star recruit.I dont know what to say re the defence, it seems they do not stop the run or the pass. They must be playing too mechanical trying to remember their assignments,and because ofthis they are forgetting to have fun and be themselves and hit hard. Thy are too structured on the field, they should loosen up and play with an attitude. there is no exitement and no team play. How many gang tackels or pile tackels do you see? Big Al must loosen up on the kids and have themplay as a team

manboobs is really Yogi Bear

September 26th, 2010
8:18 am

Tech is still the best team in the a.c.c Just need to show the world . We are Tech. We are great. We are gonna win out . Mark my words.

joeygt

September 26th, 2010
9:17 am

very disappointed in the loss but as bad as we played we still had a chance and we sucked today, and i still think we are the better team but the best teams dont always win, coach pj said good teams dont lose 2 in a row and i still think we can have a good season, we will not lose the next game we have never lost 2 in a row i think tech can still have a decent years at 8-4 or 9-3 and a decent bowl

Jason

September 26th, 2010
9:18 am

Nice to read some common sense CT_Jacket. I

Jacket Backer

September 26th, 2010
9:43 am

Yes, recruiting is not the problem. CPJ is recruiting well and it will continue. I laughed at the Gailey recruiting thing too. If he was such a fabulous recruiter, why were we going 7-5 and losing to u(sic)ga every year? I think we will be fine in the long term but we lost too much from last year’s team to win big this year. It could definately be MUCH worse, we could be ugag fans.

Go Jackets!!

greenhulk

September 26th, 2010
9:44 am

Maybe some of the reminants of Chan’s recruits need to be dismissed from the team if they are not going to give 100% at blocking and tackling. May need to ditch the 3-4 defense. I have not seen it work anywhere in College. (even Georgia is struggling with it) I watched Georgia Southern last night and they run the triple option better than GT.

The Obvious

September 26th, 2010
9:53 am

Nesbitt sure as heck is NOT an accurate passer and even more obvious our receivers can NOT catch the ball in traffic or otherwise.

Our offense will suffer as long as it continues to be ineffective in completing passes. The defense is just plain out playing SORRY. I think the ability is there and we have some very good defensive players. However it seems that 3 or 4 players loose focus each down.

I don’t blame the coaches for the players not giving it their all. I really think that the coaches get the players in the proper positions, but the players fail to execute numerous times each game.

Lastly, I love Nesbitt as a player. However, we need to take a look at the other QB will may be able to complete some passes (if someone can catch) and this might, a big might, loosen up the defense for the run.

dawgfan75

September 26th, 2010
10:09 am

Looks like UGA and GT have something in common. Both of their FB teams suck due to poor coaching. Pick best players and best coaches from the two teams put them together and Alabama would still win. Time for some major change in the great state of Georgia.

AMG

September 26th, 2010
10:48 am

Relax, Steven Hill looked HORRIBLE and we tried to get the ball to him too many times. He made a bad cut on a run, he ran bad routes, he could not catch ANYTHING that was near him. He needs to learn to use his hands to catch, not his body, he also needs to GO AFTER the ball. That being said , Joshua did not look great, but far less of the blame falls on him than the line and the receivers. Tech will win most of the games left on there schedule, I do not think we need to worry about VT and Clemson that much, neither looks that good so far. Tech could easily go on a run and win ALL the rest of there games, but if no one blocks or tackles . . . we will lose the rest of the games.

HPWolf

September 26th, 2010
11:01 am

if you compare ncstates players to ours it is a no contest

you are right bob horner it is a no contest, state manhandled both your defensive and offensive lines and the skill positions were a pitch and catch practice for NCSU. State is bigger, faster and deeper and you will see this as the season progresses. The number of stars by a recruit have very little to do with how good that player will eventually become and if you actually followed recruiting classes you would know this.

Chas_Jacket

September 26th, 2010
11:08 am

Rough game – but I think NC State is a lot better team than people realized – they destroyed a Cincinnati teeam that came within 2 points of beating OK last night. There may also have been a bit of grudge factor for Tenuta – he really wanted the tech job and I am sure he pumped up the state linebackers. We can still have a good season – just need to get the offense in synch. I think we should rotate one of the other QB’s in every couple of series – see what they can do passing. Teams have won National championships rotating qb’s – so why not try it. Nesbitt has won more games for us with his heart than he will lose with his passing – but there are times where we need to pass and for whatever reason he seems to have regressed there. Not sure the answer on defense – but with the front three not getting pressure we will have to blitz more than we did yesterday – we should have risked giving up big plays to rattle Wilson – but he has a cool head – not sure that would have changed the outcome. We should win the next 3 and hopefully get some confidence back and work out some of the defensive issues out for the meat of the schedule. Go GT!.

Mike

September 26th, 2010
11:50 am

Chris,

Relax. Why are you already counting future wins and losses? Geez. Why don’t we just skip playing the games, put us at 6-5 and play UGA next week. Typical “the sky is falling” comments.

Worm

September 26th, 2010
11:54 am

Chris, You WANT more playing time for Burnett?..He was run over by Russell Wilson..Reese needs to go to the bench..He can’t cover or tackle.

fan

September 26th, 2010
11:56 am

Nes going backwards as a passer seems to defy normal happenings. Over threw. Under threw. Threw out of bounds on his first three attempts. How can a QB seemingly as good as he is at times not progress as a passer?

After Johnson threw in the towel (and he did), why did he not play the second QB?

roughrider

September 26th, 2010
12:41 pm

The state of Georgia had two poorly coached teams playiing yesterday.

TDone

September 26th, 2010
2:25 pm

I made a statement to the folks around me at the game yesterday. That statement was, and I hate to say it, is that Coach Johnson needs to stop being stubborn and make some adjustments to the offense. The offense is not high school, but it you can’t block the guy in front of you, something has to be done. NCSU had nine guys in the box. To that end, we have to pass the ball. Nesbitt was a shotgun passer in high school and he was a good one. Line up in the OPS, then shift into the shotgun. In addition, I would recommend some pure vanilla plays like straight dives and sweeps to bring a more conventional flair to the offense. We can still use the OPS spread, but we got to give folks something more to think about.

On defense, I have never been a fan of the 3-4 defense. But it seems to me that the main thing wrong with our defense is that our guys play scared. They are not very agressive.

NCSU is good, but we can be better.

Jerry

September 26th, 2010
4:58 pm

We got beat. NC State was the better team yesterday. As for all the doom and gloom forecast that’s typical for people that really only have their fandom invested in this thing. Fact is we can win or lose every game left on our schedule. We have to block and tackle better than our opponents. There are no great teams on our schedule. If our guys make up their minds that winning is important and they show some fight, we can still have a solid season. If not, nobody is gong die and next year will be here before you know it.

Go Jackets!

westcoast techie

September 26th, 2010
6:07 pm

Here is a thought. Next year Tech may be a better team. The young defense will have an extra year’s experience working with the 3-4 scheme. Hopefully, the current timid senior cornerbacks will be replaced with more aggressive tacklers. We now have a warrior in senior Nesbitt at QB. However, we may be better off with a different QB who runs less effectively but is more of a throwing threat. CPJ can still run his same offense, but just having a better throwing threat at QB will open up the option offense. I also hope that stubborn CPJ having suffered his worst of three seasons will incorporate some resemblence of a short passing game.

5150 P.O.A.D.

September 26th, 2010
6:37 pm

Not worried. Teams go up and down all the time. we need to keep playing hard and learning the new D. When the O got it flowing we didn’t have a problem scoring, but we never stopped NCSU.

brokeback jacket

September 26th, 2010
6:38 pm

tech sucks, and are gay.

RambleOn84

September 26th, 2010
8:55 pm

The sky is not falling. The season is not over. We have lost ONE conference game, and it was from the other division. Meaning we can still win the conference. Obviously not playing like we did against NC State (or Kansas), but we won’t beat any decent team if we play like that.

VT does not look all that great and Miami is as inconsistent as it gets…we can beat both if we play with good effort and focus.

fayncdawg

September 26th, 2010
10:34 pm

@dawgfan75

I really don’t think Tech has coaching issues. I simply believe that a team that hardly has any 4+ star players (and probably no 5 stars) is only going to go but so far (unless your HC’s name is Saban). Basically Tech has good coaching and no horses. The Dawgs got great horses and lousy coaching! One thing you are very correct about Dawgfan: BOTH TEAMS SUCK!!!!

fayncdawg

September 26th, 2010
10:42 pm

And both Georgia teams losing like they did this weekend is nothing less than disgraceful!! MSU by 10+ points? NCST by 17 at home? Plenty of outrage on EVERY Dawg blog! Thirty-something entries on a Tech blog! Yellerbackets, WHERE IS THE PASSION? (some response from 5150 is probably forethcomming).

Concerned

September 26th, 2010
10:51 pm

westcoast techie

September 27th, 2010
12:19 am

Living on the “left’ coast, I’m able to watch Bosie State play on TV. Now here is a team that never recruits 5-star high school players and mostly sign 3-star atheletes. The players are coached up and graduate as 5-stars. They play with teamwork, skill and a lot of fire. It’s the coaching STUPID.

Both Tech and UGA have problems that can be summed up by the following

September 27th, 2010
7:45 am

…Tarrant said as soon as he saw the pass he was thinking of ESPN’s “SportsCenter.”

Poley Rackley

September 27th, 2010
9:31 am

Can’t be a good team without a defense.

Don’t blame Groh. Can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear.

Better hope for a winning record and hold on. Tailgating was
nice. Maybe we can get some good shine from the squidbillies.

blazer

September 27th, 2010
11:43 am

Finally threw to other people than just Hill-yep run Bostic and Smith more-

why can’t Cummings and Lanier play more???? Defense is pathetic!

AngryJacket

September 27th, 2010
12:59 pm

The final nail on the Johnson coaching coffin for me will be losing to the worst UGA team I’ve seen in nearly 20 years this Thanksgiving. If this happens, then a change HAS to be made……

kaole

September 27th, 2010
1:02 pm

westcoast,

Hmmm….that’s easy to do when you only have to get up for essentially one game a year. Beating Va. Tech doesn’t look quite so impressive after they lost to James f’n Madison. And Oregon St. didn’t even belong in the top 25. Don’t get me wrong, Boise is a cute little story and I’m sure the media will put them in the national championship game this year just to get them off their backs on down the road, but there is no way a Boise would survive playing in an elite conference.

GT66

September 27th, 2010
1:57 pm

any QB that throws pases with the trajectory of an artillery shell and accuracy of a spitball had better be a good runner. any QB that runs like a turtle had better be a good passer. JN9 is lacking as a passer AND as a runner.

ss

September 27th, 2010
2:37 pm

Kaloe,

The tide would DESTROY Boise if that happened. Their isnt one team in the country that can slow down that teams speed and skill. I know the hogs had a 20-7 lead, but finish the drill and defeat them, which they didnt do.

They should get through the gators in the swamp this weekend, which i think is the location for that game.

Mark Ingram is a strong runner and will be a good pro when he leaves to get paid at the end of the year.

Wolfpack Fan

September 27th, 2010
2:38 pm

I’m so glad that CPJ has fallen in love with going for it on 4th down.
We appreciated the great field position on those failed attempts

just saying

September 27th, 2010
3:23 pm

the previous comment about players need to play better, you are correct but if they do not, then the coaches need to make changes and try other players, move them around, anything that shows progress. Just asking defensive coaches if there is anyway thinks could be more simplified. Johnson ask Wommack to do just that last season and it helped somewhat a couple of games. Can we try that again? Just saying

just saying

September 27th, 2010
3:25 pm

Is Wilson the best QB in the ACC? No, and if you think so, you have drank the coolaid on that one. GT just sucked Saturday and we made him look better. We had a chance down 31-28 to come back despite the fiasco but we failed. Then we had no choice to utitlize all 4th downs regardless of the outcome.

Wreckmaniac

September 27th, 2010
7:18 pm

Sure we got beat. NC State is the better team . No contest and may be the best team in the ACC.
OBrien,again, is a fine coach.
BUT..T….T…T…T….T I expect a far better defensive performance than I saw. That group is sicko. Nesbitt had a super day in my mind but he cannot be the entire offense. Hill does need to learn how to catch. And I also like the idea of spreading the A back job around. There is no Dwyer on this team yet. Roddy Jones deserves a larger role. His blocking is superb most of the time and we know he can catch and then run.

Wreckmaniac

September 27th, 2010
7:26 pm

CPJ needs to get another QB some snaps anyway just to have someone semi-ready in case of injury to
Nesbitt and to have the experience that will be needed next year. I’m not about to believe that Nesbitt will be back.
Good points about Boise State. Same applies to TCU. I don’t see UGA recruits saying : ” It just came down to TCU, Boise and UGA and I picked UGA” TCU and Boise have to make do with 3 and maybe 4 stars players who are, as has been pointed out, coached up.