From The Field: Georgia 19 – Texas A&M 13

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From The Field: Georgia 19 – Texas A&M 13

Kirby Smart, Georgia vs. Texas A&M Dawg Walk, Saturday, November 23, 2019
Kirby Smart, Georgia vs. Texas A&M Dawg Walk, Saturday, November 23, 2019

I’ll finally admit it. Something is wrong with Georgia’s offense. If one reads the internet chat threads, there are plenty of simple solutions available for your consideration. Fire Coley, run toss sweeps, play this guy, bench that guy, throw slants, don’t throw slants – but does anyone believe that professional football coaches, with millions of dollars on the line, haven’t fully considered (and tried) the easy fixes?

One undeniable fact is that Georgia’s offense is not putting enough points on the board (duh!). Worse, it has not been able to sustain drives and accomplish what Kirby Smart sees as the fundamental tenet of his offensive philosophy. That is, to use a powerful, grinding running game to wear out the opponent and win going away in the fourth quarter. After all, one score is enough if one plays smothering defense AND the offense sustains drives, tiring the opposing defense and keeping the stoppers rested.

The opposite has been true in recent games, however – admittedly against quality teams. Georgia’s offense has sputtered, leaving the defense on the field and subject to the same fatigue that Kirby wants to inflict on his foe. Thank goodness, this defense is deep enough to withstand the continued lapses on the other side of the ball. Defense has put the Bulldogs in the SEC championship game, but both sides of the ball will have to be functioning at a high level to make the College Football Playoff. A tied defense will not stop Joe Burrow and his Bayou Bengals brothers.

My problem as I think about the Dawgs’ offense underperformance is the same as Kirby’s. Where is the fix? “We’ve got to get better,” is, of course, correct. But how, exactly? Maybe it is just a matter of a tweak here, or a player (or two) upping his game there – I don’t know – but as we enter week 12, thank goodness for the defense.

After a trip through the land of offensive despair and impending doom, there is a bright spot. Georgia Tech is next! Kirby will have his hands full keeping the team’s focus on Tech, but the Yellow Jackets are still transitioning to a new offensive philosophy. Dan Lanning’s defense will have a field day in Atlanta, and James Coley should be able to get his offense rolling early and often. Maybe this game is what is needed to “get better.”

The offense will get tons of negative press this week, and the watercooler crowd will offer multiple solutions. “We’ve got to better,” will echo through the halls at Butts-Mehre. Don’t bet against Kirby and Company though – go with the Smart money!

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Greg is closing in on 11 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.