I’m back. I’ve showered. I’m out of the frickin’ traffic jam on 129 (where my previous post originated from). So I’ve calmed down somewhat.
You’d either have to be blind or in serious denial to miss Georgia’s defensive issues. The coaches are certainly far from blameless, but as nobody’s going anywhere tomorrow, I’m more concerned about what, if anything, can be done now.
A few observations after six games:
- Grantham’s not blind to what’s happening on the field. Leonard Floyd was a huge liability in pass coverage, but is a beast when it comes to rushing the passer. So today, he was deployed on obvious passing downs and that was about it.
- The problem is that all of the linebackers are liabilities in pass coverage. And when teams go four- and five-wide, Georgia can’t hide. Ramik Wilson got victimized repeatedly in the first half by Missouri and the only thing Grantham had in response was to trade Wilson’s responsibilities with Herrera’s.
- What about safety help for the ILBs? It’s an idea. The problem is that Mauger and Moore don’t seem to contribute much. There’s a reason Norman plays ahead of Moore; he may not be as physically gifted, but he has a better idea of where to be and what to do on the field.
- Run defense continues to be serviceable, at least when the defensive line is able to stand its ground. Run support from the secondary is almost non-existent.
- There isn’t a reliable cornerback. Shaq Wiggins looked like a keeper for about three quarters, but looked like a Martinez defensive back as he gave up two big plays in the last ten minutes of the game. Eventually, he’s going to be steady, but he’s not there yet. Swann is the biggest mystery on defense. It’s stunning how much he’s regressed this season.
- The pass rush/penetration on the line comes and goes. When it’s there, as it was early and throughout the third quarter today, the defense thrives. When it’s not… well, let’s just say that there were long stretches where James Franklin looked like the most relaxed person in Sanford Stadium. That being said, the defensive line is far and away the strongest part of Georgia’s defense right now.
So what would you do? Me, I’d probably blitz even more, until I see signs that somebody in the secondary can cover. Oh, yeah, and pray that Norman and Matthews get back soon.