Alabama is a buzz-zawa, even according to the standards of Alabama. The tides have inevitably aroused this entire season. And although the likely national title of Bama does not stop you or me to enjoy the rest of the year, the Georgia Bulldogs are not you or me. Their reward for winning the SEC East is that they know a month in advance that they have Bama.
The Tide will be heavy favorites in the second chance of the national title game of last year. S & P + says they are now about 7 points better than the Dawgs on a neutral field like that in Atlanta. The Kirby Smart team has to spend the next month on eliminating that difference.
1. Use the UMass and Georgia Tech games to tighten a vertical transit game.
Jake Fromm has not shown any opportunities to stretch the field. For two years he did a good job by sporadically throwing when Georgia was able to get people across the floor. When the Dawgs were not doing well, Fromm only had ugly games. And Fromm & # 39; s lack of proven ability to hit field passes makes it harder for UGA to face good defenses.
Fortunately, the pass defenses of UMass & # 39; and Georgia Tech are both terrible. They are each comfortable under the 100th in Defensive Passes S & P +. Fromm she should be able to cut out. As soon as the Dawgs are comfortable, or even before that, they have to work in many deep steps on different route concepts for Fromm. The defense of Tech is actually good in prevention big play passages, but not to stop efficiency, so maybe he gets a small test there.
This would also mean that you should try Justin Fields at a given moment and give him meaningful passes. Last year, the tide Georgia beat the best dual-threat freshman QB in the country after a four-star second-year wrestled. Maybe it's the Dawgs's turn.
2. Find an energy package for a short distance and make sure it works.
You do not defeat Alabama by settling for field goals. When the Dawgs have a short distance to expand disks or to hit touchdowns, they often have to convert. Alabama suffered major problems at the beginning of the year, but seems to have repaired them. No one scored more than a 20-yard TD on them since Ole Miss on the first game of week 3.
Drive finishing is essential, and the Dawgs have been bad in short yardage. While they are ninth in Rushing S & P +, they are 56th in Stuff Rate, the percentage that does not pass the line (18.2 percent). They are 88th in a third and a short conversion rate (66.7 percent). They are 125th in the success ratio within the 10-yard line and 129th in success rate of the goal line.
The ugliest example of this problem was when Florida stole the Dawgs on six goal line snaps in a row at the largest outdoor cocktail party in the world …
… but that six-play, zero-yard drive from the Gators & # 39; 1 was an indication of a year-long problem. This is nonsense for a team of four and five stars across the board and in the back field.
Alabama has Quinnen Williams and a bunch of maulers in front. But you are still in Georgia, and you would still be able to get one or two meters almost every time you need it.
Please, Dawgs, on behalf of the entire United States: do not let it this one be the reason you can not get upset. Smart and offensive coordinator Jim Chaney is paid well enough to be able to figure this out.
3. Familiarize yourself with the coverage of people, even if you play teams that do not have good athletes at the receiver.
UGA & # 39; s rundefence is, like the violation of the goal line, inexplicably bad. The Dawgs are 71st in Defensive Rushing S & P +. Roquan Smith and Lorenzo Carter were huge losses from the team last year, but again, this is one Georgia roster. There are blue chips all over the front, and they should be able to hold the line without the secondary too many bodies giving up to help.
That has not always been the case. In the future, Senior Corner Deandre Baker and the five-star first-year Tyson Campbell must be as comfortable as possible in a man-to-man game with limited safety assistance.
The arm of Tua Tagovailoa usually makes it impossible to make one good choice about assigning players to defense. But if Georgia can only play with six men in the box, good luck. The tides usually have eight: the five lines, a tight end, a running back and Tagovailoa as a running threat itself. Tagovailoa can read a defender and make a border at the time of attack when the tide makes the zone read aloud in a power or dart run, like this:
Georgia can not keep Alabama behind the figures all day long. The run defense of the Dawgs suggests that they need players in the box, which means that DB's only have to hold against the four future NFL receivers of the Tide. It is rotten, but that is what needs to be done.
Georgia Tech will hardly throw, but Campbell and Baker must use the Auburn and UMass games in particular to ensure that they are as technical as possible.
4. Start praying, or whatever.
Because if Alabama plays its potential, it does not matter.