“We’re just doing what we’re doing a little better.”

Ah, don’t be so modest, Kirby.  This is a big deal.

If Georgia football players wanted to forget about last year’s red zone woes, Kirby Smart made sure in practice they didn’t soon forget.

The Bulldogs coach shouted out some dismal national rankings from 2016 during red zone drills to remind players how far they had to go.

“That’s kind of a thing for us to overcome,” wide receiver Terry Godwin said. “We don’t want to go back to that last year. We want to be the best team in the red zone offense and defense-wise.”

The defense has gone from 113th to 17th nationally, but that’s another story for another time and par for the course this year for what’s turned into one of the top defenses in the nation.

On the other side of the ball, Georgia is a perfect 19 of 19 on red zone chances this season, making it one of 12 teams nationally to get points in every trip from the 20-yard line and inside.

What I love about this isn’t so much that offseason attention has led to in season improvement.  That’s something we saw happen under Richt, too.  What we also saw under Richt, though, was that as one gaping hole would get plugged, another breach in the dam would crop up elsewhere.  So far, that hasn’t plagued Kirby’s team.  That’s how you get better and, more importantly, stay better.

13 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

13 responses to ““We’re just doing what we’re doing a little better.”

  1. bulldogbry

    I noticed that as well. Each season, it used to be “what aspect of the game is going to disappoint me this year that I’m not thinking about right now”. I’m still baffled that Appy State and Samford scored more than Miss. State and UT, but you know what that means? GROWTH AND PROGRESSION.

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  2. mdcgtp

    the great thing about this improvement is it’s not a fluke. My guess is that part of it is the coaching staff redoubling efforts in practice and schemes, but it also reflects that we are a better team overall. Finally, our reserves have done their part to limit garbage time yardage, which is a reflection of the competitive culture of the program.

    What is exciting is thinking about the cumulative effect of his efforts in future years. Think about how much better the interior of the OL is going to get. Imagine actually playing a veteran QB who gets to throw the ball more than 15 times per game. While we know gle is going to recruit well, one of the overlooked stories of next years class is that we have a punter that is coming is supposedly a very special talent. Thus, we will have gone from bad punting to very good to great. Seems like a small detail, but there are almost none that go untended by this coaching staff.

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  3. MDDawg

    I also like that he’s not satisfied with that improvement and still wants more. In this week’s press conference he stated something to the effect “you guys say we’re perfect in the redzone but we’re not scoring TDs every time so that’s not perfect to us.”

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  4. Huntindawg

    Defense looks great. As far as a hole in this team, I’m worried about what happens when we face a good D.

    https://sports.yahoo.com/ncaaf/teams/ggb/schedule/

    These stats don’t look good.

    You can call me Larry if you want.

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  5. McTyre

    Good blog entry and good news. However, can we PLEASE retire the scoring % as the primary metric as opposed to TD %? When ten FGs in ten RZ scoring opportunities gets an offense a better rating than nine TDs in ten trips, that’s absurd. Similarly, a D adept at forcing RZ FGs could get a poor rating if opponents simply have an average place kicking unit – as 25-us FGs are rarely blocked. As RZ scoring and defense is essentially what cost us the Vandy game last year, good work staff and players!

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    • Macallanlover

      While getting points every time you are in the RZ is damned important, the ranking should be based on average points per RZ trip. The goal should be over 5.5 points per trip, as an example.

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  6. Otto

    Kirby stopped multiple plugs thus far over 2 years, Special teams, OL depth, red zone D, roster management, and did so with arrests down and no apparent new holes to plug.

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    • W Cobb Dawg

      Great summary.

      Say goodbye to the ole days: directional kicks instead of booting it through the endzone, Logan Gray on punt safe, voluntarily suspending top players for multiple games, issuing schollys to half a dozen walkons each year. Seems like an odd new world.

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  7. Granthams replacement

    The gap Kirby fixed was the lack of mental toughness. When this team plays Alabama the difference from 2008/2015 game will be obvious. Alabama might win but the team won’t fold up in the fetal position.

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  8. AusDawg85

    There may not be a breach in the dam, but I’m not sure we know what it takes to slay that Ice Dragon bearing down on the Wall. You know nothing, Jon Snow.

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  9. Mike Cooley

    We are definitely getting buttah.

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