Though if you’re Kirby Smart discussing last year’s offense, maybe the blame falls on one person more than any other.
“… We always talk about it. I’m not happy with where we were. Jim’s certainly not either. I can tell you this, his hands were tied at times and we have to do a better job of untying them.”
Smart was asked off air what he meant by Chaney’s hands being tied and he said he was referring to having to break in true freshman Jacob Eason as a starter. Georgia was 97th nationally in passing offense at 193.5 yards per game.
“When you have a true freshman quarterback, your hands are tied a little bit,” he said. “Go ask any offensive coordinator who played with a true freshman quarterback and I think they’ll tell you there’s a limitation there on what you can do. That’s a defense of (Chaney) but that’s also saying that we had a true freshman quarterback. That’s not saying I’m holding him back. When you start a true freshman quarterback there’s things he hasn’t seen before.”
That sound you hear is Jeff Dantzler’s chuckling “I told you so”.
Sounds like Jim Chaney’s had a fun offseason.
“After the conclusion of last season and not having the production that we wanted to have, you do a lot of soul searching and a lot of visitations with a lot of people of what’s fresh and what’s new,” Chaney said Saturday in a news conference. “I am a big video guy and get into tons of video watching. I like the cutting edge of the NFL, and I thought Atlanta did a wonderful job last year, so I’ve been studying a lot of their stuff.”
Let’s hope he cut that tape off with 21 minutes left to run.
Not gonna happen.
Options and good haven’t exactly been in Florida’s vocabulary when talking about post-Tebow quarterbacks. Since 2009, Florida has had nine starting quarterbacks — Austin Appleby, John Brantley, Jacoby Brissett, Del Rio, Jeff Driskel, Treon Harris, Skyler Mornhinweg, Tyler Murphy and Will Grier — which is tied for the most among all major-conference teams in that span. Athletes/tight ends Jordan Reed and Trey Burton also took quality snaps at quarterback, making for 11 bodies and few real answers.
Florida has gone 56-34 since Tebow’s departure, collecting just two divisional titles (the same Tebow had as a three-year starter) and zero SEC championships (Tebow had one as a starter). Florida failed to average at least 400 yards per game in any season over the past seven years, entering the 2017 season averaging a paltry 339.3 YPG during that time. Tebow-led offenses averaged 453.2 yards in 41 games. Of those 41 games, only 16 dipped below 400 yards.
Florida has had just 27 400-plus-yard games in the 90 games since.
As far as pure passing numbers, Florida has averaged 184.7 passing YPG over the past seven years, with 105 touchdowns to 78 interceptions. Of the 11 quarterbacks used, only six completed more than 60 percent of their passes and only Brantley and Driskel reached 3,000 career yards. Grier, who went 5-0 as a starter, is the only player to register a QBR above the 50s (70.1). The next best? That would be Reed at 55.6, who is now one of the NFL’s top tight ends with Washington.
Before you say this sounds like Georgia reminiscing about Herschel Walker’s greatness, at least the Dawgs have fielded some excellent running backs since his time.