Five Keys for a Dawgs Victory: Georgia vs. Florida

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Five Keys for a Dawgs Victory: Georgia vs. Florida

Malik Herring (10) pressure Wildcat QB Lynn Bowden (1) during the fourth quarter of the Kentucky game, Saturday, October 19, 2019
Malik Herring (10) pressure Wildcat QB Lynn Bowden (1) during the fourth quarter of the Kentucky game, Saturday, October 19, 2019

1 – Pressure Trask:

What a story Kyle Trask is. Having not started a game since his freshman season of high school, he got the “battlefield promotion” against Kentucky, and has thrived leading the Gators offense. Georgia’s defense must make the Florida signal caller uncomfortable if the Bulldogs are to prevail. Georgia coach Kirby Smart talked all offseason and throughout the campaign of “havoc” plays. It’s essential against Florida. Trask and this Gators offense is chock full of speed and play-makers. If he has time, the Dogs are in big trouble.

2 – Turnovers:

From the department of “hot takes,” winning the turnover battle is at the top of the Dogs “To-Do Lost” for Saturday. In this game, where momentum is so fleeting, and at least half the crowd is always rocking, nothing swings the “Cocktail Party” like turnovers. Georgia has won the turnover battle en route to 42-7 and 36-17 victories the last two years – most notably J.R. Reed’s scoop of a fumble and score two seasons ago. During Florida’s run of dominance in the series, Gator wins were filled with defensive scores and ….

Georgia senior placekicker Rodrigo Blankenship (98) with the PAT during the fourth quarter of the Kentucky game on Saturday, October 19, 2019
Georgia senior placekicker Rodrigo Blankenship (98) with the PAT during the fourth quarter of the Kentucky game on Saturday, October 19, 2019

3 – Kicking Game:

Florida cashing in on those dreaded STDs, Special Teams Disasters. N.O.T.s can also make all the difference in this one, the Non-Offensive Touchdowns. Georgia’s has to avoid them, and if the Bulldogs can get one, that win percentage rate skyrockets. The Bulldogs special teams has had its ups and downs this season, and certainly hasn’t achieved the consistency Smart strives for. Just like with the turnovers, the long lost of huge plays in the kicking game by the Gators were a huge part of their two decades of dominance. The Dogs at least need a push here, but winning the special teams battle could be the boost to victory.

4 – Win the Run Game:

This is no secret either. The team that controls the run game, almost always comes out on top. D’Andre Swift and the offensive line turned things up in the second half of the Bulldogs 21-0 victory over Kentucky two weeks ago, as the dynamic junior tailback ran for 179 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries. Florida will follow the blueprint, and load up, challenging Georgia’s downfield passing game. It might take a couple of big throws downfield to loosen things up a bit. The Georgia defense hasn’t given up a rushing touchdown thus far this season, and this will be one of the most difficult challenges yet. Florida has lots of speed. As always.

5 – Be the Hunter:

To come out on top Saturday in Jacksonville, the Bulldogs must take the fight to Florida. Landing that first punch, drawing first blood, it’s big. If the Gators do strike first, Georgia has to counterpunch. Florida coach Dan Mullen called out the Bulldogs all offseason, and now the moment has arrived. In 2017 and 2018, Georgia dominated the SEC East. Florida is ripe with confidence thinking it is their time. The Bulldogs are confident too.

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