How offensive will Georgia’s offense be?

If it’s reasonable to expect Georgia’s defense to improve over last year’s results, based on the reasons elaborated here yesterday, what should we have grounds to expect from the offense?

It’s great that with Chubb and Michel back, the Dawgs are loaded at running back.  The tight end position looks set.  Eason’s got a year of the SEC wars under his belt.  Jim Chaney’s had a year to feel his way around what he’s got and what Smart wants.  There’s a noticeable infusion of new talent on the offensive line.

But it’s worth remembering how far offensive production has fallen in just two seasons.

But as a unit, the entire offense will seek added production after a couple of down years. From 2010-14, when Mike Bobo was Georgia’s offensive coordinator, the Bulldogs averaged no less than 32 points per game in a season. In 2014, Bobo’s offense averaged 41.3 points and 257.9 rushing yards per game, which helped him land the Colorado State head coaching job.

In 2016, Georgia averaged 24.5 points and 191.2 yards per game.

Remarkably, Georgia didn’t manage to achieve its 2014 scoring average in a single game last year.  To expect a return to 2014 levels of offensive production, then, even with the areas of optimism detailed above, is an unrealistic stretch.  Consider this, though:  if the Dawgs had scored one more touchdown per game in 2016, they would have finished with a regular season record of 10-2.  31.5 points per game isn’t exactly a monster number, either.  It would have been fifth best in the conference and 48th nationally.

If it’s likely the defense will improve, you’d have to think the team would be looking at a very productive season with an offensive scoring average of 31.5 points.  Thinking is one thing, though.  Attaining is a whole different matter.

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98 Comments

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98 responses to “How offensive will Georgia’s offense be?

  1. Aladawg

    This is where coaching up needs to happen. I’m not sure Chaney’s that capable.

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  2. We’ll see for sure. I have zero confidence in our version of Jabba the Hutt.

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    • 3rdandGrantham

      Right. Everytime I see him, I think…if he doesn’t have the will power or isn’t disciplined enough to exercise a modicum of control something as vitally important as his own health, how can I be confident that he’ll have the discipline to do everything in his power to ensure the O will be successful? (be it through planning, self improvement/evaluation, etc.) Not to mention that being overweight/obese leads to greater fatigue, reduction in brain power, etc. Sounds harsh, but surely I’m not alone on this.

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      • DoubleDawg1318

        Lots of football coaches and ex-football players for that matter are overweight. Doesn’t mean they can’t get the job done.

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          It’s one thing to have a small paunch; it’s quite another to be very obese. How many top coaches, historically or present, look anything like him? Besides, if nothing else, being that overweight can only hurt you, not help you.

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          • David H.

            While they only had mixed success as head coaches (where physical appearance might be more relevant as the “face of the program”), Mark Mangino and Charlie Weis won a national championship and Super Bowls, respectively, as offensive coordinators.

            I’m not saying that being obese is healthy. But it doesn’t preclude successful play-calling.

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            • 3rdandGrantham

              I never said that you can’t be successful; only that it doesn’t exactly give me confidence and that it certainly can’t help matters.

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  3. TXBaller

    Damn Hutson Mason….only 41/game.

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    • Only 18.5 ppg vs. Tech and UF.

      Padding stats with 66 vs. Troy, 63 vs. UK and 55 vs. charleston southern doesn’t impress me.

      And I’m still unimpressed with how the tech game ended that year. Time and time again our qbs have made big plays at the end of the tech game to win it:

      Belue brought us from way back in ’78 including a gw td pass
      Bobo had two game winning td passes against them
      Hines converted 8 3rd downs in a row to set up a game winning FG
      Greene came off the bench with an injury to seal a win when DJ struggled in relief
      Stafford came through with a game winning TD pass
      Even Lambert converted a big third and long with his back against our goal line to seal a win

      Hutson threw a pick on an RPO instead of putting it in Chubb’s gut and it was over.

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      • KornDawg

        Joe Cox pulled one out, too, didn’t he? Touchdown Massaquoi!

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        • KornDawg

          Boy, I screwed that one up. That was Stafford in ’06, Cox did beat Tech in ’09 but that was the “We Run This State” year.

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      • Greg

        He also finished the year completing 68% of his passes, good enough for 6th in the country…..a QB rating of 155.75, 10th in the country and a 41.3 scoring average, 8th in the country and tops in the SEC….that also broke the school record. I sure could have used some of that last year. He did not look sexy, but he got the job done for the most part. He certainly did better than what I anticipated. Most every team plays a cupcake or two, it is all relative…..a DGD in my book.

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        • He may be a DGD. He’s no DGQB. He benefits from what the offense has looked like since to be sure. People tend to forget that he nearly lost that job to Brice at home vs. Tennessee. Stats are all good and nice but it’s W’s that matter. In the big games and moments he was at best mediocre. Not one 200 passing day vs. a ranked team.

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          • Greg

            It was because he was doing what QB’s should do for the most part, get the ball to his playmakers….as evidence to the records that were broken that year (ppg). Agree on the W’s comment, but Mason sure as hell did better than what I expected….a pleasant surprise for me. He did not have the physical tools that Eason does….but our season and offense changes if Eason can hit 68% of his passes.

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            • Greyson had 2 passes hit the ground in 120 minutes of football. Doesn’t make him a good qb. A guy hitting a high percentage against bad defenses is all good and well but we need a qb to be an asset in the big games. You don’t beat the top teams on your schedule with a tailback anymore: When your running backs have as many 200 yard games as your qb, something’s wrong.

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              • DoubleDawg1318

                The 2014 Clemson game proves otherwise. Alabama is famous for employing “game managers” at QB and they seem to be doing alright.

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              • Greg

                Not sure what your point is…..but mine is, a QB that breaks the school records (PPG, completion % ? & etc) & finishes 9th nationally …..is a pretty good QB. Did not say he was great, but he was a good QB. We were better with him rather than without. I would love to see Eason step up and get the offense more involved like Mason did…to see the field better and etc. He has the potential, physical gifts that Mason did not have….if he does not, it will not get much better than last year imo (if we stick with him). Improved QB play, is the key to our season.

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                • I’m just saying that you can’t win titles with that guy. He’s pretty good week 4 at mizzou. I suppose that’s worthy of a comment… or not.

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                  • Greg

                    I guess what you are saying is, if you can’t win a title or beat your rivals…you’re no good, right??

                    Peyton Manning was 0-3 against UF as a starter & 0-4 in games he played in…he could not win a title, but Tee Martin could.

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                    • Puffdawg

                      Annnnnd, mic drop.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • You are correct Puff. In the vernacular of the young folks, Derek has been owned, powned, roasted, toasted, and microwaved.

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                    • Find me a season in his last three where Peyton had zero 200 yard games passing vs. ranked teams and then we can talk about your Hutson = Peyton because both are .000% vs. uf as starters.

                      Peyton does have a SEC ring and two Super Bowls. But yeah neither beat UF so essentially they are the same guy.

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              • 69Dawg

                Derek you act like the QB makes the schedule. He is playing who the school has schedules and both Hudson and Lambert were winners. They could have lost to Vandy and Tech but they didn’t. The team lost the games not the QB’s. We get it you will only be happy when we are undefeated, it just gets old when you Dawgrade an individual player because the team was not able to beat UF.

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                • CMR’s teams were qb dependent. You can’t argue that.

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                  • Greg

                    All teams are QB dependent, dependent on getting the ball to their playmakers. Can you argue that??

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                    • Yeah, but sometimes those playmeakers need to be downfield rather than a few steps away.

                      If all you asked me to do was shovel pass I could complete 100%. It would be up to the coach to put a “playmaker” two steps in front of me I guess but stats!

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              • Biggus Rickus

                Like when Florida couldn’t beat Georgia with 27 passing yards in 2014. Your QB just has to be a difference maker to beat the best teams on the schedule.

                The Florida game was also Mason’s biggest passing day of the season in terms of completions, attempts and yardage. He didn’t turn the ball over. One might call what he had a good day. If he wasn’t so shitty, though, he probably would have filled in at outside linebacker and occasionally set the edge.

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                • Right. The game that we could only win if the qb took it, we got beat badly. They took the run and said Mason can’t beat us. They were right.

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                  • Biggus Rickus

                    Florida won because the Georgia defense was terrible. It had nothing to do with their brilliant defensive gameplan. If it had gone like a typical Florida game when they were overmatched that season, the defense would have kept them in it for a while until their complete ineptitude on offense got them beat. Instead, Georgia let them run for about 240 more yards than their average in their other 11 games.

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      • Mayor

        Don’t blame Mason for the ’14 Tech loss. That was all on CMR (remember the “pooch kickoff” when kicking it deep would have won the game. Georgia was behind Tech late in the fourth quarter when Mason marched the team down the field to score what should have been the winning TD with only 30 seconds left in the game. At that point the game was a UGA win and Mason was the hero of the game. CMR lost it in usual CMR fashion with an idiot end of game decision which snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. I do NOT miss that guy.

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        • I heard this argument so many times it makes me want to puke.

          Who was in the Georgia dome when Ray kicked it deep under similar circumstances? I was. Didn’t turn out good for us.

          We’ve kicked it deep and given up td returns and we’ve pooched and given up returns. The only good answer is to execute whatever play you call, kick it correctly and make a tackle.

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          • The right call for Richt would have been to kick it deep and cover. You don’t surrender field position to a run-only offense who’s special teams had not made a decent kick return all day. I don’t normally jump on the armchair QB bus, but that one deserved second guessing.

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          • MDDawg

            I agree that there are times where you don’t want to kick it deep, but Tech didn’t have some phenom kick-returner back there. In fact, I’d be surprised if Tech had returned a kickoff for a touchdown that entire season, which is the kind of detail you would expect these coaches to know. I loved Richt (still do), wish him all the best at Miami, but that decision to pooch kick is hard to defend. And yes, I understand that the pooch kick wasn’t executed to perfection and we still had an opportunity to stop Tech on defense.

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            • Uglydawg

              I agree it wasn’t a good call, but everyone misses sometimes. Had they run it back from deep, we would be saying he should have pooched it.
              That ship sailed a long time ago.

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              • Mayor

                That’s sort of the point, Ug. Tech WOULDN’T have run it back for a TD. They hadn’t done that all season.

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            • The obvious answer is to have a leg that kicks it out the back of the endzone. Unfortunately Richt’s tenure was filled with directional kicking.

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          • Cosmic Dawg

            You are pissed because Mason did not pull off TWO game-winning drives to take the lead twice in the final minutes. Got it. Should have had you out there throwing those little short passes as you suggested earlier, since any pansy can do that. I am sure you would have the school completion record and a natty.

            Go pound sand.

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      • Uglydawg

        Good points, Derek, but all SEC teams stats are padded from playing cupcakes..so if we adjust Georgia’s down, we need to do the same to everyone else…but by what percent? CMR was renowned for pulling back once a lead was safe. Most others (SOS for one) would run it up to a hundred if they could. So Georgia’s point padding is real but not as severe as most others.
        And I’m not real certain CMR took the best approach to that. Cupcakes sacrifice their dignity for a paycheck..a fat one. So maybe it’s better to get all you can out of them. You’r paying for it. Hell, CMR even took a knee on the goal line against Auburn once.

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        • Which is why stats are misleading and are never the whole story. If you want to know if someone is good, see how well they do vs. good competition. We thought we were ok at qb until bama rolled in. Then we found out Greyson was a stiff. He had two incompletions in the prior two games. Hell I think we may have been favored. Any way we showed up without a qb and got throttled.

          (If you’re thinking of telling me you’re so smart you knew he’d fall flat vs. alabama, please save it. If you can date the comment to before the game, fine but I don’t need your belated expertise.)

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          • Uglydawg

            No sweat. Nothing worse than someone being full of himself. I honestly didn’t know what to make of GL after the SC game. I never dreamed he’d have rigor-mortise, though. The coaches must have had at least a small idea about it…in fact I believe his record performance that night was a combination of the coaches realizing Lambert needed quick throws, and the SC coaches playing it too soft because of his reputation for a deep gun. It was a perfect storm that set us up with unreasonable expectations.

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        • ugafidelis

          “all SEC teams stats are padded from playing cupcakes..”

          All P5 team stats… FIFY

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  4. 3 keys to whether the season is a boom or bust:

    Chubb playing like he did before the injury in Knoxville
    Vastly improved production from the WR group
    Credible offensive line play

    You check all of those boxes and we’re in Atlanta. Chubb has to be Chubb in the big games. We have to have WRs who can both get seperation AND block and catch and we need to stop getting whipped up front at the point of attack.

    If all of those come through a 35ppg average is easily within reach.

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    • southernlawyer11

      . . . and i think we have to ready and willing to ride Sony when things are bogging down. Frankly, until I see clear evidence of 2014 Nick Chubb, I think Sony is the better back. Sometimes i feel like people think this is heresy even saying something like this but… JMO.

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      • He’s the more natural runner but he’s not the battering ram that Chubb can be. Sony makes people miss. Chubb makes people pay. In today’s world of DB’s who don’t like contact, a guy like Chubb running in space can be invaluable. He demoralizes defenses when he’s right. That’s a big asset.

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        • Brandon

          I think that’s why he said “until I see clear evidence of 2014 Nick Chubb”. Pre injury, he was one of the front runners to win the Heisman. Nobody’s arguing that. However, if you look at last year alone, no doubt Sony looked like the better back. I think Chubb knows that too. Nobody wants to Nick Chubb again more than Nick Chubb. With that injury nearly 2 full years behind him and a full season last year under his belt to get that confidence back, I think we get the old Nick Chubb back. Maybe even a better Nick Chubb, which is one scary thought for the defenses on our schedule.

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        • Uglydawg

          Absolutely. If Chubb can return to his form of churning up defensive backs, he will de-moralize them even before the game starts. I personally believe he will be back, not in original form, but in even BETTER form. His determination, work ethic and drive will pay off. Hell, they could even put him at tight end occasionally to freak out the defense. Can you imagine what the LBkers and CBs on that side would be thinking if Chubb lined up at tight end inside the redzone? At the very least they’d have to waste a time-out. With this kind of an imagination, I should be an OC .

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    • Jp

      Damn dude don’t say this much but that is spot on . All the talk about Eason not holding up last year was bull . He had zero help.

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    • MGW

      With the wr’s, if we could just get some combination of consistency and upside (big plays/catches), it would go a long way. We had neither last year.

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  5. Puffdawg

    If the defense goes from good to great, wouldn’t you expect the offense to be better, just based on likely more and better opportunities?

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    • Macallanlover

      This is where I am also, almost guaranteed that our offense will be better in 2017 with no improvement at all from Chaney’s group. That doesn’t mean it will be enough in a couple of key games to insure a W, but if we do improve on offense, this team will be excellent. Interesting game will be against ND, their defensive front will show us how much we have improved on the OL. We should also know about Eason before the end of September. I am more confident about improvement on the OL than I am with what Eason has to do, if he makes a couple of big steps forward this could be a 2002 like season for the Dawgs.

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  6. We’ll be better than 2016 at QB and WR and at least no worse at OL. I can only believe Chaney and the offense will at least be a little better. Either that or Kirby throws more of his players under the bus while we lose to Vandy as Tech.

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  7. Bigshot

    And just think, people didn’t like Mike Bobo. SMH

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  8. JT

    I am still not sure I get all the complaints on Chaney, he didn’t take over a loaded offense. The best player was returning from major knee injury, true freshman QB, poor OL play, no threat at WR. This year we should see improvement by a TD a game, if not, then yea Chaney may need to be replaced.

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    • Reipar

      We are exerting our will. That has nothing to do with the OC.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Will

      I agree with this sentiment. OL was an absolute train wreck and Catalina may have been the least talented OL we have ever had. Freshman QB and very marginal WR talent. What was he supposed to do? When you can’t block, throw, catch, or run there are not a ton of plays in the playbook…

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      • Mayor

        Are you talking about Tyler Catalina, the former Georgia Bulldog offensive tackle who is currently on the Washington Redskins roster having signed a 3 year contract for $1.66 Million. That Catalina? http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/12634/tyler-catalina Just wanted to be sure who you were discussing.

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      • Mayor

        I don’t want to beat it to death but coaching, particularly coaching decisions, have hell of a lot to do with the success of players and the success of the team. The HC is supposed to use his players in such a way as to maximize their chances for success. When you, as a coach, have a finesse OL and you try to play smash mouth football with that OL, you get what you deserve. Unfortunately bad coaching decisions impact everyone, including players and the alums/fans. I get it that you are pissed off, Will. Rightly so. Just be pissed off at the right person.

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  9. RandallPinkFloyd

    Like others have said, I just keep telling myself, our ’17 offensive line can’t be worse than ’16. I hope we’re right.

    Scary to start to true freshmen in the SEC, but that’s the way I see it playing out at this point.

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  10. Skeptic Dawg

    So we have to replace multiple spots on the OL with guys that could not beat out players from an awful OL and we are hoping to see improvement. fThe influx of talent at WR is filled with freshman, inexperienced and unproven, yet we hope to see improvement. The running game is relying upon an RB that has yet to return to his pre-injury form, yet we hope he does. Our QB struggled with accuracy and field vision last season, and we hope that he is the real deal. Sure, I hope for improvement as well. Just not gonna happen this year.

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    • Greg

      LOL!!….Munson, is that you???

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      • Uglydawg

        Greg..Munson was Barney the Dinosaur compared to Skeptic. But Skeptic is a very essential contributor to GTP’s balance. He keeps us from getting overconfident or even somewhat confident. Skeptic is the anchor that is solidly gripping the seabed and will rip the transom off the back of our the good ship “Enthusiasm” if we take off with too much slack in the chain..which I believe he dreads happening. So he allows us to drag him along as he tempers our speed. When and if Skeptic ever says, “Weigh Anchor! All hands prepare to make good time to ATL”, you better hurry out to Vegas and put every penny you can muster on the Dawgs winning it all. Skeptic actually does make me stop and wonder if we’ll even win 5 games. It’s a life philosophy that I have learned to often apply…if you expect a lot, you’re probably going to get disappointed, if you expect little, you may get a nice surprise! I can see it. In fact, I would be kind of sad to see him convert to the bright side. He’s a comfortable old shoe.

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    • Will

      yes, we signed more OL talent last year than Right signed in 15.

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  11. Reality check here

    Phil Steele is kukewarm on Georgia but he predicts an improvement on offense to 30 ppg.

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  12. It sure as shit was offensive last year.

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  13. Southernlawyer11

    I would like to see us try Charlie Woerner out like Ole Miss used Evan Ingram. If we’re still not getting proper separation and / or Eason is struggling with tight windows, throw back shoulder lobs to Woerner and let him use his height. That back shoulder jump ball type throw Ole Miss used so frequently is devastating…..not only does the hybrid TE/Receiver have a height advantage but the smaller defender has even less of a chance at climbing the ladder if he has to reverse momentum, plant and then try and compete with somebody who already has the advantage. It’s like trying to out rebound an athletic power forward when he already has prime position.

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    • Southernlawyer11

      In short, I’m going to be pissed if we are stagnant again, while still asking why we didn’t use [insert 1 of 4 freak tight ends who could play anywhere in America] more.

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    • Greg

      Yep, Woerner would be tough to cover split wide.

      Like

  14. Atticus

    Get the ball to Mecole, Sony, Chubb and Nauta.

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  15. doofusdawg

    bootleg!

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  16. W Cobb Dawg

    Has anyone bothered to check Chaney’s history? He’s a mediocre OC who’s bounced around cfb for a few decades now, never producing anything of note. At least a fellow overweight like Friedgen has shown a high level of expertise and some success in tough places. The day we dump Chaney is the day our offense immediately improves.

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    • My point about Chaney is he has never gotten a sniff of a head coaching gig. People respond with Norm Chow except Chow would be on lists as a candidate but just didn’t get the job. Schools haven’t even looked at Chaney.

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  17. Turd Ferguson

    I’d love to see Chubb in pre-injury form, but honestly, I don’t think our offensive production is going to depend on this as heavily as others seem to think. If the OL is improved, Michel and Herrien will run all over people. But if the OL isn’t improved, not even Chubb will be successful. So Chubb isn’t the issue here.

    My main concern on offense is Eason. Stafford-level talent. But between the ears, he’s basically the anti-Stafford. Stafford never saw a pass he didn’t think he could make, and as we all remember (and as those of us who are Lions fans still witness regularly), it gets him into trouble. Eason, on the other hand, seems reluctant to throw the ball unless his receiver is wide open, and so, he hesitates, hesitates, … and then starts dancing around as the DL closes in around him. Gunslingers aren’t supposed to be afraid to pull the trigger.

    It was to-be-expected during his freshman season, as he adjusted to SEC play. But to be honest, it looked just as bad (if not worse) in the most recent G-Day game. So, unless he’s taken great strides this summer (or unless our receiving corps figures out how to get much more separation), I expect this to remain a liability on offense. But this time, it could get interesting, with a confident Fromm waiting on the sidelines.

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