About that offense…

Just as a sort of follow up to yesterday’s post about the ESPN stat geeks identifying Georgia’s big problem as being quarterback play over the last two seasons, allow me to present to you a few tidbits from Seth Emerson’s post-spring preview of the receiver position.

  • “You may see more vertical shots for Godwin, whose longest catch last year was 35 yards, and who averaged only 10.8 yards per catch.”
  • “Last year’s offensive staff couldn’t quite figure out how to get the ball enough to McKenzie. Just get him the ball and see what happens would seem a good strategy, yet it didn’t happen much. Oh well.”
  • “If the best laid plans at receiver don’t work out, there’s always the tight end to fall back on. That should’ve been the case last year, but … well, a lot of things went wrong on last year’s offense.”

I’m detecting something of a pattern here.

Again, it’s not to say that all of last year’s failings fall on Schottenheimer’s shoulders, anymore than it should be to say that it was all about the quarterback.  The reality is that Georgia’s offense, which managed to average over two fewer touchdowns per game in 2015 from its 2014 scoring production, has a lot of things that need fixing.  Better quarterback play is certainly part of that repair job, as is a more robust offensive scheme.  But there’s plenty of shoring up to do with regard to coaching the offensive line and receiver positions, too.  Of course, a healthy Nick Chubb won’t hurt, either.

39 Comments

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39 responses to “About that offense…

  1. The offensive line play last year was downright offensive even with a healthy Chubb. Nick had to call those guys out … against Southern. What Rob Sale did last year was awful. All he had to do was not screw it up.

    Schottenheimer ended up as a terrible hire … even worse than Towel Boy.

    I would love to see someone write a book on the 2015 season and what was happening behind the scenes.

    • Jared S.

      I don’t know anything about coaching an OL. But I can remember watching some of UGA’s practice videos last year and seeing Rob Sale and I was very underwhelmed. I mean compared to Rocker, for instance, he seemed like a total light-weight. Like he was in over his head. This is not an evaluation of his methods or knowledge, but just how he came across. A general impression.

      • I think that’s a very fair statement. I don’t know anything about coaching an OL either, but I did see the product on the field and compare that product to Will Friend’s product. With 4 returning starters (although Kublanow was moving to center), I thought we would be solid up front. Other than the USCe game, they never looked very good, and the TE production went down as a results as they had to use Blazevich and Rome as extra pass protection. That had to frustrate John Lilly big time.

        Come to think of it … in hindsight, maybe promoting Lilly would have been a better solution at OC.

        • “Come to think of it … in hindsight, maybe promoting Lilly would have been a better solution at OC”. I was saying this after the 2014 bowl game against Loserville. Lily would have kept continuity and the Shitenheimer hire was the nail in Richt’s coffin.

          • The problem was Richt had decided to be CEO rather than coaching a position. Clearly, Richt learned his lesson as he has gone back to being a hands-on QB guy. If he had promoted Lilly, he would have had to hire a QB coach without an OC title or done the job himself.

    • BarneyDawg

      When I saw Southern stone our O-line in that first half, I told the guy next to me “Lucy, we have a problem”. I thought it was just a let down due to the competition and lack of crowd buzz, but it wasn’t.

      I belonged to a pay site for a while last year. One of the posters son was an O-lineman on the team and man did the Dad and son hate Sale.

      • I couldn’t believe how bad the o-line looked in that game … it was VERY hard to watch that first half.

      • Daniel Simpson Day

        Your last comment was true. The good news is that Pittman is a polar opposite and the kids love him. The scheme is much simpler, IMO, and will yield much better results this fall.

        • Everyone seems to love Pittman. He seems to be living large in Athens.

          • Macallanlover

            Large….definitely large. 🙂

            Really like the start he seems to have made, we need OL improvement in the worst way. I feel we will have to outscore folks in a couple of our key games because our defense has some questions along the front, and depth problems as well. Being able to extend drives and run some clock will be a huge asset. Always is, but more so this this season.

  2. Uglydawg

    Amen, ee. We are all “armchair coaches”, but in the case of Schotty, I can imagine that the average Dawg fan could have been waved down out of the crowd to take over as OC and done a much better job. It almost looked like an inside sabotage job to me. The game at Jacksonville was the UGA version of “Apocalypse Now”..and a microcosm of the whole season and situation.
    Remember, when he was hired, we heard warnings. I worried about that, but trusted CMR’s judgement…I’m sure CMR knew he had a dud before we did, but there was some reason he held on to the guy. I think CMR just kept hoping that Schotty would turn it around and avoid the discomfort of having to fire a high-profile new hire.

    • Ugly, I can’t disagree with a word you’ve written – good post.

      I think the big lesson of the Schottenheimer experiment is to resist the desire to hire an NFL coordinator who is looking to build his resume for a head coaching job. Those guys don’t get the 20-hour rule and make the game much more complex than it needs to be at the college level.

      More than anything else, I don’t get what QB coaching was occurring during the week. Lambert seemed to get worse as the season progressed, and that became evident after Chubb went down (although Lambert was pretty good in Knoxville). The pick he threw in the Missouri game was one of the worst throws I’ve ever seen in Sanford Stadium in my 35 years of attending games in Athens. Thank goodness Kenneth Towns didn’t give up on the play.

      • Daniel Simpson Day

        Schotty was brought in but made to run someone else’s system (remember Eckler’s exit interview comments?) and was kind of estranged at best. Not a lot of teaching / coaching done.

      • JCDAWG83

        I would have thought the Grantham experiment would have taught Richt not to hire NFL coaches, apparently not. A college coach has to be a teacher and a strategist and has to keep things pretty simple. An NFL coach can be a pure strategist and can pretty well ignore the teaching aspect and make the defense as complex as he wants.

        The book on Richt was that he was a great qb evaluator/developer. In hindsight, it appears Bobo may have been the one with the actual talent in that respect.

        • JC, I would agree with you on the lesson learned from the Towel Boy experiment.

          On the point about QBs, I disagree to a point. Richt appeared to put too much trust in Schottenheimer to coach the QBs and gave him the same leeway he gave Bobo. In hindsight, that was a pretty bad mistake.

          • JCDAWG83

            If you are correct, that is an even more damning indictment of Richt than has already been offered concerning his inattention to detail and lackadaisical attitude. If he was unable to see the problems at qb that is a little problem. If he saw them and did nothing to correct them, that was a huge mistake.

            I’m in the camp of Richt mailed it in the last 8 years at Georgia. In my opinion, when Bobo left, his absence really shined a light on things.

            • I’m completely speculating, but that speculation was from watching the results unfold from the lower southwest corner of the end zone or from Section HD and not from any direct observation.

            • Yep. Some here have argued that the last two losses to Florida got Richt fired, but that was just the proverbial straw. IMHO, it was more about the obvious inability of Richt to replace or even temporarily fill in for Bobo.Two separate failures on his part. Miami did not get what they think they got. He might have early surge, but my guess will be that he will quickly fall back asleep at Miami’s wheel now. Just my two cents.

              • JCDAWG83

                Even when Richt was calling the plays, Bobo was the qb coach and helped with play calling. Cutcliffe made Fulmer look like a good coach, maybe Bobo made Richt look like one. Richt is a good front man and PR guy who can work the fans really well, I’m not sure he’s really that great of a football coach. I wonder how long Miami will hang on to him if he doesn’t bring success early.

            • lakedawg

              Mailed it in the last eight years, what a dumb ass remark.

        • Gaskilldawg

          Awe, shit! No one told Kirby that lesson before he hired a former Chicago Bears coach as defensive coordinator .

          Dag nabbit!!

  3. Huntindawg

    Too lazy to do the research myself, so I’ll use the GAS method of research (Go Ask Someone): What is the year over year TDs per game comparison for the team before the Tennessee game and after? TD average 2014 vs pre-Chubb injury vs post-Chubb injury?

    • Go Dawgs!

      I haven’t looked it up, either, but I’m not sure it matters anyway given that you’re looking at Georgia vs. UL Monroe, Vandy, South Carolina, and Southern along with an Alabama team that just absolutely stoned us.

  4. Go Dawgs!

    Can we just take a quick time out from all of the serious talk and point and laugh once again at South Carolina and how awful they were last year that they couldn’t even slow down the Greyson Lambert juggernaut?

    HA HA, GAMECOCKS.

  5. Siskey

    Read “Collision Low Crossers.” It is a book about the NY Jets season in 2011 when Schotty was there. It may give some perspective on our former OC.

    • Jared S.

      Why don’t you tell us what it says about him? I’m interested, but not interested enough to go hunt down this obscure book about a team I care nothing about and read it. =P

      • Normaltown Mike

        It has a chapter about how the head coach made him play his 3rd string QB in the most pivotal game of the year cuz he (HC) wanted to see if the team could keep a secret from the press.

  6. Jared S.

    …. Ha. Ryan is such a phony. But what, if anything, does that tell us about Schotty?

    • Siskey

      The author spends more time with the defense but he does sit in with the Jets offense some. Schotty comes across as being unable to deal with having a QB who is either immature or not talented enough to start in the NFL. Schotty is also heavily criticized by the Defensive coaches for making things too complex and being unwilling to run the ball. For example in one of their games Sanchez threw the ball 69 times.