D’Andre Swift likes what he’s seen so far in bye week practices.
“I think as an offense, we strain harder, we play to the whistle,” Swift said. “One block might spring a guy 50-60 yards. You never know when your job is going to be called on, so everybody is doing their job, and doing what they’re being asked to do.”
Swift added he believes much of the team’s earlier issues have indeed been corrected.
“I think so as well. I think we’ve done a better job of being cleaner,” Swift said. “We’ve seen it in practice. We haven’t had any drops, no penalties in practice, so hopefully, that trends over to Saturday.”
… Swift again offered some suggestions.
“Work on the play-action, screens, stuff like that,” Swift said. “Different run plays, things that put us in better situations and help us.”
If that translates over on Saturday, better attitude, better execution and a little more creativity in playcalling should have a major impact in separating what Georgia does against Florida that what it did three weeks ago when it laid an egg against South Carolina.
Also, let’s not forget what the stats show for the two teams.
Dawgs have been slowed since UT, but still outperform the Gators on most stats. Even in the passing game. UF is brutal on 1st Down rushing. Dawgs can still mix it up with the pass and run. A one-dimensional UF offense could set up nicely for hungry UGA Defense that Kirby wants to see excel.
You’re not going to tell me you wouldn’t take your chances with a game in which Georgia runs the ball successfully and Florida can’t. I sure as hell would. Georgia doesn’t need to blow up its approach on offense; it needs to make sure it’s taking whatever steps are needed to improve efficiency, and, in the process, create a few more explosive plays, ideally in the passing game, to open up the Gator defense. That shouldn’t be an insurmountable task.
My biggest concern right now isn’t turnovers. It’s special teams. One reason the offense looked so anemic in the first half against Kentucky was subpar return work against both the one kickoff and the many punts. The Dawgs can’t afford to let Florida back them into a hole like that. That doesn’t mean they’ll avoid it, though.
I also don’t anticipate Georgia sleepwalking its way through the game. Not so much because it’s Florida — that should be plenty of motivation in and of itself, but I still remember 2014 — but because the margin for error has been worn to a nub. As Swift put it, “Everything is one game, so you can’t hold back at all.”
Play like that, fellas.