Notebook: Tight ends happy to be back in Bulldogs’ plans

ORLANDO, Fla. — If a recent trend continues, we’ll see more in the passing game out of tight ends Arthur Lynch and Jay Rome in the Capital One Bowl.

For most of the 2012 season, the primary role of Georgia’s tight ends was to block. But their contributions in the passing game picked up as the season progressed. Lynch and Rome each caught at least one pass in the Bulldogs’ past five games. They combined for 22 catches and 330 yards and a touchdown during that stretch.

Most notably, Rome scored Georgia’s first touchdown in the SEC Championship game against Alabama. And Lynch had the last reception of the season, a 26-yarder down to the 5-yard line where the game eventually ended.

“It’s a lot more fun,” Rome said of being involved in the passing game. “Football is fun whether it’s just blocking or if I get to catch routes. But at the end of the year we started to become a more primary target, and I think it’s great. It’s fun out there catching balls and getting your name called. It’s just fun to get out there and run around a little.”

Georgia has a rich tradition when it comes to producing productive, pass-catching tight ends. But the Bulldogs had four games early in the season where a tight end did not have a reception.

Then the Bulldogs lost wideouts Michael Bennett and Marlon Brown to season-ending knee injuries midway through the season. Suddenly quarterback Aaron Murray found himself looking for new targets.

“I thought they were very productive this year,” coach Mark Richt said of the tight ends, who combined for 32 catches, 546 yards and four touchdowns. “As the year went on we went to them more and more. Some of it had to do with the injuries that we had with Brown and Bennett. That just provided those guys with more opportunities to make plays.”

Rome believes at least some of it had to do with earning Murray’s trust.

“I feel like it was just a matter of time, a matter of the coaches and Aaron gaining confidence in the skills me and Artie have,” he said. “I think they’ve been there all season. There have been some little things here and there we’ve improved on during the season and got better at.

“But I feel like the whole year we’ve been able to make plays. It was just a matter of the coaches and Aaron getting comfortable with us out there. We’re new faces out there, and they had to get comfortable, but I think we’ve shown them we can make plays.”

No rush on D-line coach

The Bulldogs will not have a fully dedicated defensive line coach on the sidelines when they take on Nebraska on Tuesday. Richt said he does not expect to hire a replacement for Rodney Garner until after the team returns to Athens on Jan. 2.

“We’ll be excited about who’s next,” Richt said. “I’m getting bombarded by a lot of people who are very interested in the opportunity. So we won’t have any trouble hiring a very quality person where Rodney was.”

In the meantime, defensive coordinator Todd Grantham has taken on the added responsibility of coaching the defensive line in preparation for Tuesday’s bowl game. Grantham also handles the Bulldogs’ outside linebackers as a position group. Graduate assistant Brandon Wheeling has been putting the unit through its paces during practices.

Work hard, play hard

Georgia practiced in full pads Thursday at Celebration High, its second workout in Orlando. The players were then treated to an afternoon and evening at Universal Studios.

“Today was one of the most crucial practices because we want to stay focused on our business,” offensive guard Chris Burnette said. “We want to enjoy our time after practice at the parks, but we’re here to win a football game. It’s going to be a tough battle, and we need to make sure we’re ready.”

On Thursday night, Universal Studios hosted something called “Dawgs on Top Night.” After another morning workout Friday, the team will have the option of visiting SeaWorld or attending the Russell Athletic Bowl between Virginia Tech and Rutgers. Former Bulldog Brent Benedict is a starting offensive guard for the Hokies.

50 comments Add your comment

Cornelius Washington's Neck Brace

December 27th, 2012
10:47 pm

Go dawgs……

Smitty

December 27th, 2012
11:39 pm

and better things to come from these guys

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned by Bill King, Chip Towers & only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

December 28th, 2012
12:17 am

Orson Charles has only been gone for 13 games so the TE’s did go anywhere they just suck at running routs or catching the ball. Murray made a living throwing the ball to o Charles so what happened? The new TE must suck cause the plays have always been in the book.

Neutral

December 28th, 2012
1:02 am

@Put in timeout……
I’m sure you are grieving over your ACC game last night. Go Bearcats!!!

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned by Bill King, Chip Towers & only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

December 28th, 2012
1:11 am

Grieve about a Duke game? You are a strange guy Neutral.

Just Asking?

December 28th, 2012
1:33 am

Jay Rome is an awesome tight end. These guys don’t get enough credit for what they do. Can’t wait to see them in the Bowl game.

Lonnie

December 28th, 2012
3:01 am

“Put in” please make sense when you post! Just because a player who has been with Murray for 6 yrs. high school included gets a lot of passes does not mean it happens with 2 new young men!!! Murray this year passed the ball around more than any QB in recent memory because of our depth @ receiver. I actually think a play over the top to Rome would have won the Bama game! What I say to all posters on here is to give credit where credit is due!!!!

Neutral

December 28th, 2012
4:59 am

@put in
Yes, were complaining on another blog about late hits by the Bearcats. Sounds to me like you were pulling for Duke and doing that typical ACC song and dance about being hit too hard!!!

Neutral

December 28th, 2012
5:05 am

That last blog should start with: You were complaining…….

bitter "spoiled recruit"

December 28th, 2012
7:31 am

LENCH AND ROME WILL BOTH BE IN THE ——–NFL

————————————-BELIEVE IN THE —–”G”

———————–THANKS FOR A GREAT YEAR —DAWGS

Put in Timeout = Sybill

December 28th, 2012
7:45 am

Put in Timeout has many aliases on the AJC blog. He has a Sybill-type personality so he makes no sense with his multiple posts. He thinks that he went to Tech because his Daddy attended there. Timeout/Sybill was to dumb to go to college. He is obsessed by UGA, yet he hates all things UGA. He yearns for UGA’s success on and off the field. He is really a pitiful human being who needs mental help.

Timeout/Sybill, the ACC is 0-1 after poor Duke lost in the final minute of the game. More beatings to come in the next week for the ACC. ACC is the worst conference in America. Georgia Tech is very lucky that Barkeley won’t play on Monday. Tech will still lose another bowl game leaving Timeout/Sybill to come on the UGA blog with more ignorant comments. His only solace is that UGA will lose on Tuesday. Timeout/Sybill, in 2013, get some mental help.

Ghost of Sinkwich

December 28th, 2012
7:48 am

Four Names for 2013 Tunsil, Foster, Adams, and Kamara!!!!!!!!!!!

zbulldawg

December 28th, 2012
7:50 am

It’s all good. LET THE BIG DAWG EAT

Kenny Powers

December 28th, 2012
8:05 am

@put in timeout…your point was what?????

2011 stats for Orson Charles…….45 rec. 574 yds. (12.8 yd per catch) 5 td’s
2012 stats for Rome and Lynch…43 rec. 546 yds. (15.6 yd per catch) 4tds

By your way thinking Artie should be the backup QB…his completion rate is 1000%…not sure about his QB rating though….some, just love to hate

bubba4dawgs

December 28th, 2012
8:16 am

Lonnie, I agree with you on that play over the top to Rome in the championship ship game. Actually, I was expecting that….but maybe Bama was too. At least a shot in the end zone I think would have given a better chance to score. It’s not easy to run it in on Bama after the catch. Oh well, shoulda, coulda, woulda. I still love the DAWGS no matter what! They’re still hungry and will keep fighting. We’ll see how hungry in this bowl game. Nebraska likes to run the ball and are good at it. Whether we play them as well as Wisconsin remains to be seen. I’m concerned about the “D” line but I believe things will improve with Gardner’s exit. GO DAWGS!!

Finchdawg

December 28th, 2012
8:27 am

Actually Chris Conley had the last reception of the season, unfortunately. Not blaming him, just stating facts.

bill arp

December 28th, 2012
8:28 am

Hate to be a stickler, but Lynch didn’t have the last reception of the season that went down to the 5 yard line. I do believe that was Conley on the tipped pass.. But i see what you’re saying…

Season ending on a tipped pass, who’d a thunk it….

bill arp

December 28th, 2012
8:29 am

I think the ole saying, ‘don’t believe everything you read’ comes into play here….a lot, actually.

Vampire Bill

December 28th, 2012
8:38 am

Put in is pretty much a nimrod. I’ve noticed that all along.

AF Dawg in Va

December 28th, 2012
8:48 am

I believe our TE’s getting more receptions is a function of the O-Line coming together. The Offense can be very good next year as we are going to be starting with a mature O-line. Hopefully we’ll be able to run the ball iot control the clock. If so, then we’ll be able to give our young Defense time to mature as a unit. Go Dawgs!

kydawg

December 28th, 2012
9:07 am

Awfully quiet about possible candidates for the DL coach…CTG going to tap the NFL & just waiting for the regular season to end? Anybody hearing anything out there?

Destin Dawg

December 28th, 2012
9:08 am

Nebraska is a good team with a great tradition…. play hard for 60 min….. Dawgs !!!

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
9:12 am

Put in timeout is a Troll of the highest order. It’s not really his fault though, his momma boyfriend was a Tech grad. POAD feels it’s his legacy to hate on Georgia. Plus, he ain’t got nothing else to do until the grass starts growing again and Mr. Ricky comes by and picks him up.

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
9:15 am

uncledaddy

Don’t do drugs, drugs are bad, mmmmmkay?

Joey

December 28th, 2012
9:35 am

If the Dawgs give the effort they have since UF, they will beat Nebraska like they did Ole Miss.

Just saying.

Blue Ridge Dawg

December 28th, 2012
9:39 am

@ Timeout- – You are a moron. Congrats. Mama didnt give you attention, so you choose to rant on our UGA blog. Dumbazz

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
9:47 am

Joey
Georgia pounds the Huskers into submission early. If there is anything there to watch in the 2nd half it will be to see if Nebraska has any ability to comeback and that will be no, they can’t against this team. Unlike last year, these Dawgs have something to prove

bham dawg

December 28th, 2012
9:59 am

would love to get tracy rocker. probably won’t happen though.

Joey

December 28th, 2012
10:16 am

Sounds good ARdawg. It should happen.

What’s your guess on what Murray’s gonna do – go or stay?

WDE

December 28th, 2012
10:16 am

AF Dawg in Va agree 100% as the OL progressed this year the TE’s got a chance to expand their role.

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
10:19 am

Joey
I think he goes and he should. The phantom of “can’t win big games” is BS. He has proven himself in the toughest conference in the land. I suspect he could have the most sought after job in the NFL. The #2 QB on any team in the land knocking down a couple mil a year for several years.

Joey

December 28th, 2012
10:36 am

I think he will go too. I think he answered the critics with a really nice game in the SECCG. He didn’t win the SEC, but he came a damn sight closer than Stafford.

I also think he will wow the NFL at the Combine – his arm strength and smarts are way underrated.

Like you say, being the best backup in the league has its benefits – you get to keep your brain intact, and make great money just being a jock . . .

Tide/Dawg

December 28th, 2012
10:38 am

All of us “Armchair Coaches” have all of the answers to winning a game. However!! We get to say all our “should haves” after the games have been played and mistakes made. If the head coaches had that much time to make a decision, they would be as smart as we are. Selah!

[...] the original: Notebook: Tight ends happy to be back in Bulldogs’ plans ← Back to Home Tags: continues, fla, lot, lynch, primary, recent, season, strong, yard [...]

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
10:53 am

Joey
I have no doubt he could be a starting QB on a few teams but, something just tells me he’s the guy you want but, hopefully never have to use. He can get it done and has all the tangibles. He’s got the strengths and throws strikes. His periodic brainfarts they can fix in the NFL where UGA coaching staff isn’t too prolific

Jeff

December 28th, 2012
11:03 am

Based on what Wisconsin did, UGA should run all over Huskers. Is there any way UGA finds a way to lose?

Tide/Dawg

December 28th, 2012
11:19 am

A Quarterback has 5 receivers out running pass routes. He has 4 seconds(if the Oline keeps the animals off of him) to make a decision and pick out a receiver that may be open. Most of us can’t even read a 5 sentence blog in 4 seconds. A really good offensive line can give a Q’Back 5 seconds. Can you imagine how many better decisions he can make with that extra second? Add 1 second to those numbers to get rid of the ball, then figure 15 minutes to get over the pain if he holds the ball too long, because the bone crushers have arrived for the kill. Everyone can brace themselves for contact…except the Q’Back. He’s the most vulnerable player on the field. So after all of that analysis……get on with the blogging.

Kenny Powers

December 28th, 2012
11:40 am

If you’re Wilson, Barkley, Murray, Bray, Boyd, Smith, et al, why would you want to be the first two or three off the board…ego? maybe…money? probably…go to a bad team and be thrown to the dogs, hated by the fans, don’t get the chance to be developed, don’t get the chance to get weaned into the position, getting a beating behind a bad line, losing the confidence of your teammates, coaches, and fans….finally there’s the doubting yourself and losing confidence in your own abilities…there are teams/coaches/systems that do develop young players, but there are also teams that just don’t know how, or can’t, turn around an offense with the hand they’re dealt…some organizations just can’t build a team, can’t stick to a long range plan…so in closing, I wouldn’t mind going in the 2nd or 3rd round to a team like Green Bay, New England, etc. and learn the position, wait out the contract, and enter the free agent market, and make even more money down the road…patience, my friends, is a virtue

ARdawg

December 28th, 2012
12:12 pm

Kenny Powers
It’s all about the money my friend. Did you overlook that one little eventuality?

1970 Dawg

December 28th, 2012
12:14 pm

@Tide/Dawg and Kenny Powers, I just wanted to thank you both for some sensible blogs. Its pretty hard to find anyone on this blog who knows the diff in a Touchdown and a first down. After all the haters, trolls and the whiners, it’s really nice to read something of value. I couldn’t the blog from Bubba… earlier who complained about us throwing to Conley on the 5 yd line at the end of the SECCG. Poor guy has obviously been under a rock since the game ended.

GB's Hamburgers

December 28th, 2012
12:21 pm

During the season I made the joke that Authur Lynch couldn’t catch a naked girl in a hot tub. But it’s not that bad. He’s just been trying to run berfore the ball is caught, More game experience will solve that. He is a freight train and has one of the most effective “stiff arms” in the business. Rome has been making some good catches also. I think it’s a well stocked position.

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned by Bill King, Chip Towers & only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

December 28th, 2012
12:49 pm

Orson was a THREAT on every pass play for 3 years but the TEs now are not even though about on most pass plays and that is the truth.

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned by Bill King, Chip Towers & only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

December 28th, 2012
1:00 pm

Kenny Powers……….that is the same every year for the top QB draft picks. The BAD teams have the top picks and that means they need a QB. The top Drafting teams are usually bad and will take a QB unless they can work a Great Deal to get more pick. A top college QB in the draft better plan to go to a crappy team always.

Kenny Powers

December 28th, 2012
1:00 pm

@put in timeout…have problems reading/understanding…refer back to my 8:05 response to this same nonsense…

“You are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts.”

01HAWK

December 28th, 2012
1:11 pm

Kenny Powers

December 28th, 2012
1:12 pm

@put in timeout…really the crappy teams get first pick!!!!! No shat Sherlock, thus my post…it’s may just be better to be a later pick, get developed, and get even more money down the road…hold a clipboard for a few years, learn/develop under a great coach/system…hang around the league and actually survive for 10 years or so rather than being beaten to heck and back, lose confidence, and wind up being a talking head for your college team, if you’re lucky enough to find such a gig…for every Luck, RG III, there’s the McCoy’s, Quinn’s, Russell’s, V. Young’s and the list goes on and on…don’t know what you’re trying to say, as I thought my post was fairly clear…if it’s a misunderstanding of your part about my write up, then my apologies for coming down too hard on you

JFKDawg

December 28th, 2012
1:25 pm

How about we hire a Special Teams coach and recruiting coordinator and let Grantham coach the D line?

tampadawg

December 28th, 2012
1:28 pm

correction, Chris Conley actually made the LAST reception of the game, not Lynch. Also, Orson Charles transferred to Plant High as a senior and only played one season of high school with Murray.

AVikingFan

December 28th, 2012
1:57 pm

Kenny Powers

December 28th, 2012
5:47 pm

@1970 Dawg…tks for the kind words…I always find your posts to be free from emotion and putting out information to back up your point of view