How’s this for a stat?
The Bulldogs have run 100 plays from scrimmage since Green’s 57-yarder against Missouri and have gained just 403 yards.
If you didn’t like that one, I’ve got another for you.
“I’m leading the team in rushing touchdowns right now,” Murray said.
There seems to be a general consensus about the cause behind the Dawgs’ current woes. Per Murray,
“The basic thing is doing your job,” Murray said. “And use this week and next week to really hone in on your craft, whatever it is. Whether it’s throwing the ball, running the ball, tackling, catching, blocking, snapping, kicking. Just focus in.
“It just seems like this year, everywhere — offense, defense, special teams — we have these mental breakdowns where we just, I don’t know if it’s take a play off or just don’t completely focus on what we need to do. And that’s what killing us this year.”
And from his offensive coordinator:
“They were a team that was going to blitz us and play three-deep zone and keep everything in front of them,” Bulldogs offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said. “We had to do a good job of executing, and for the most part we did not.”
One thing I like about Bobo is that he strikes me as being sincere when he uses the word “we” talking about the offense. The players may not be doing everything they’re expected to do, but he recognizes that he hasn’t been as consistent with his playcalling in the last two games, either. I know that some of that comes from the uncertainty of dealing with players who’ve never seen the field before the Missouri game (in particular, some of the walk-on receivers don’t seem capable of much more than occupying a defensive back’s space) and some comes from an offensive line that’s been spotty in its blocking. But we’ve also seen Bobo do a masterful job of orchestrating effective drives, like the one that led to Georgia’s first score against Missouri and the one that closed out the first half against Vanderbilt.
Some of what’s happened feels like the players and coaches are just waiting for the big play on offense. Because up until recently, that’s worked.
Explosive plays are nice and they’ve been Georgia’s bread and butter the last two seasons. Right now, though, the Dawgs are lacking in the skill position talent that can generate those big plays seemingly on their own. Those cracks the offensive linemen make that let Gurley or Marshall create huge runs aren’t going to get the same results from Douglas and Green. Chris Conley draws a lot more attention as Murray’s top target than he does when Bennett and Scott-Wesley (not to mention Mitchell) are out there flanking him. I’m not sure the mental preparation has caught up to the physical limitations.
That’s not to say Georgia can’t score. There are still working parts. Murray’s there. So is Lynch. The line hasn’t suffered any injuries. It’s all about recognizing what they’ve got to work with and utilizing what they’ve got better than the guys trying to stop them.
“Teams are going to make us execute, and they’re going to try not to give us any cheap ones,” Bobo said. “We’ve got to improve as a group with our assignments and make plays. We’ve got to find ways to get the ball to the guys who can make plays.”
Of course, getting Gurley back won’t hurt anything.