The defense’s next step

Something from Ed Aschoff’s post today on SEC spring preview questions:

8. Are any teams in the SEC really pegged for a national championship run?
The SEC has a handful of contenders, but none of them are polished to this point. Two favorites to watch? How about Auburn and Georgia? The Bulldogs still need to find a quarterback but might be the most complete SEC [sic] otherwise. Running back Nick Chubb seems willing to carry the offense, while the defense should fill its current holes nicely this spring.

That’s quite an assumption, isn’t it?

I mean, Pruitt did a good job last season masking the deficiencies in the secondary.  As mentioned earlier today, he’s got some real talent to work with at outside linebacker.  I’m also a believer in second-year improvements.  But he’s got a monumental job replacing a lot of experience on the defensive line.  He’s also got to replace two inside linebackers who, despite their flaws, were mainstays for the defense.

At least he’s got experienced players to plug the gaps created with the departures of Herrera and Wilson.  On the defensive line, though, he’s got to find some freshmen who can, if not start, at least shore up the two-deep significantly.  How realistic do you think Aschoff is being here?



Filed under Georgia Football

25 responses to “The defense’s next step

  1. Spence

    If he doesn’t start to bring the safeties up in obvious running situations (see, Georgia Tech, Florida), then we’ll have a couple more teams run on us till we give up… and maybe more than that if all our opponents start to use the same playbook.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big Pruitt fan and am excited about next year, but he had two true head-scratchers of games where he refused to give additional run support. That won’t be helped much by our green defensive line in 2015.


    • William

      Part of that was Floyyd playing Superman and getting caught out of position. Especially in the FU game. He was supposed to force the runs back to the inside, but got caught looking in too much and got beat to the edge constantly (so it seemed to me at least). GT was just us getting beat up by the dive play and not being able to consistantly take it away. I don’t think bringing safeties down would have helped. It would have just given the O-Coordinator any easier decision to make. IMHO


      • Spence

        I respect your viewpoint and I’ve never played/coached in my life so I’m an outside the arena guy. But, I would have preferred our safeties get beat by the pass against UF and Tech than us playing 11 v. 9 for the first 20 yards. I may do a blog post about it soon… would welcome your input.


        • RandallPinkFloyd

          I believe the Tech game plan was to force the dive to take away any threat of a big play. He basically got what he wanted. Pruitt is bend, don’t break.


        • Joe Schmoe

          Also, Tech only scored 24 pts in regulation (and yes I realize they chewed up a ton of clock doing it), but it wasn’t like our defense gave up a ton of points in that game.


  2. Silver Britches

    This is a perfect microcosm of the bullshit ESPN puts into the ether.

    The same ones hyping the hell out of UGA in March are the same ones screaming “OVERRATED LIKE ALWAYS” the second we lose a game.


  3. Mayor



  4. SouthernYank

    “I’m also a believer in second-year improvements.” Funny I’ve never read this when you’re talking about any other team.


  5. Jack Klompus

    Ever article- “”they’ve got Chubb!!” Lots of hype always scares the piss out of me No reason to think otherwise, but I sure hope Nick can hold up under the weight of the hype. If we don’t get solid QB play, then we gots no shot at the playoff.


    • pete

      I feel the same way. The areas we hype in the preseason disappoint during the season and the areas we lament seem to impress…or maybe it is just perception…


      • Brandon

        Aim low and avoid disappointment


        • Rugbydawg79

          If Keith Marshall is really healthy and confident–that changes everything


          • Macallanlover

            Add in Sony Michel for me. Chubb was magnificent but we have two other backs who can break one from anywhere and get the tough yards. We will be fine on the run, stop one and look out for one of the others. That depth of quality running will amplify whomever wins out at QB. Our offense will be fine. Just stop the damned run on defense. If we do, we will be in Atlanta in early December. That ain’t Kool Aide, just fact.


          • Cosmic Dawg

            I may be all wet but I would be interested to see what Marshall could do at WR. We are certainly short there, and unless he gets his mojo back in a serious way he’s gonna be 3rd string going into the season. Hated that injury for him – that camera shot of him on the sideline was one of the saddest things I’ve seen in football.


            • Joe Schmoe

              our 3rd sting tailbacks tend to still get a good many carries. I do think he could do some damage as a slot receiver though.


  6. For other reasons, “they’ve got Chubb” scares me. That dude might rush for 2500+ this year. I think he has the body for durability and the athleticism for reliability.

    He’s going to make the coaching staff look like geniuses.


  7. DV

    In 2014 the Georgia defense was top 20, and offense was top 10, so that was close to being a formula that worked, only 2 plays away from winning the GT and SC games with the goalline mistakes.

    Ohio St ended up in the top 5 for scoring offense with untested inexperienced set of Qb’s, to go along with a top 26 defense. so it can be done.

    FSU in 2013 had the #2 scoring offense, and the #1 scoring defense.

    Bama in 2012 had the #1 scoring defense, yet the top 20 scoring offense.

    So can Georgia be top 5 on offense or defense nationally in scoring in 2015?

    So either your offense or defense has to be top 5, and the other side of the ball can’t be too bad.


  8. 81Dog

    I don’t want to hurt Ward’s feelings, because he seems like a nice dude, but AU? They have an awful lot of questions on offense, don’t they? They may know who their QB is going to be, but nobody knows if he can really play. And Muschamp? He didn’t exactly light up the world the last time he was there, did he?

    I mean, it’s possible, it just doesn’t seem like they’re the team that jumps out at you as NC material.

    Just to be fair, I don’t know that UGA jumps out, either, although I think our D is more solid, our O line and running game is pretty well established, and we should have a couple of threats at WR. Our QB situation is certainly unproven, though, so who knows? I worry about Chubb taking too much of a pounding if they just give him the ball 40 times a game. I expect we’ll be good, I think if things fall right, we could be in the discussion, but it’s way too early to make any bold predictions. YMMV


    • Gus has a good track record with quarterbacks and Johnson can throw the ball.

      Auburn may have question marks on offense, but I don’t think the Tigers will have a problem at QB this season.


      • 81Dog

        I’m not saying Johnson will be a dumpster fire. But, how many 1st time starters end up with championship rings (I guess tOSU is proof it can be done, but numbers are numbers. And those numbers apply to UGA as well)? Is it possible? I guess. I just don’t see them as a strong shot. Time will tell.


  9. CannonDawg

    My closest friend told me that I’m the most realistic person he has ever known, with one HUGE exception, and that is Georgia football.

    Given that, then here goes: Aschoff got it mostly right. Drop Auburn and he has it exactly right.

    Why the hell not?