“Just watching them on film. I can see they’re very consistent.”

The recent track record of the Cocktail Party — the game, that is, not the weekend — suggests strongly that the team the runs the ball best, wins.  Georgia is better than Florida this season at running the ball and stopping the run, so the Gators have to hope they can buck the trend with the passing game.

The question is, can they?  At The Athletic, Will Sammon ($$) suggests they can.

But the one Florida probably must win in order to defeat the Bulldogs is its consistent passing attack versus a defense that has allowed just 5.4 yards per pass attempt. And there is a reasonable chance it will.

He bases that in part on Georgia’s pass defense’s vulnerability to the big play.  His evidence for that strikes me as a little weak.

Georgia surrendered big pass plays to Tennessee and South Carolina. On throws 15-plus yards downfield against Georgia, South Carolina was 1-for-2 for 46 yards and Tennessee was 3-for-10 for 127 yards, per Sports Info Solutions.

That doesn’t look like a lot.  And that impression is borne out by Georgia’s first-place ranking in the SEC in allowing passing plays over 10+ yards and 20+ yards against FBS opponents this season.  The Tennessee 73-yard TD pass he cites is the only pass play of 50+ yards Kirby Smart’s defense has allowed.

Sammon does post a chart that indicates a key personnel issue for Saturday, though.

georgia-pass-defense

Notice the YPA averages for Tyson Campbell and D.J. Daniel.  Then notice the target/completion ratios for the two.  Based on this, you should assume Kirby’s already noticed:

Based on that, I’m anticipating two things tactically come Saturday.  One, when he’s out there, Florida is going to do everything it can to target Mark Webb in pass coverage.  And, two, I expect to see more of Florida’s third leading rusher, one Emory Jones, who’s averaging over six yards per rushing attempt, at the quarterback spot.

It’s a huge game for both teams and both coaches are going to be pulling out all the stops to win.  In particular, Mullen showed a kitchen sink game plan on offense for LSU and I doubt he’s gonna pull back this week.

27 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

27 responses to ““Just watching them on film. I can see they’re very consistent.”

  1. Scuba

    Both teams I expect to be taking deep shots early. PI calls Im afraid could be a big part of the outcome of this game. For some reason we dont seem to be on the good side of major penalty calls in big games. Hopefully Penn Wagers will not be called back into action for this game.

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  2. Russ

    I don’t think Florida can pass consistently on us, but I do worry about a couple of big plays. Given our constipated offense, Florida could get a little separation and put even more pressure on our offense. On the flip side, if we can get a little separation with a couple of good drives, it will help us greatly.

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  3. I read Sammon’s piece yesterday and felt his evidence that UGA is there for the taking was a bit weak. I think it’s 100% fair to question whether or not UGAs defense is as good as its stats given the poor QB play it’s faced, but when he cites Book’s 275 yards without also citing the attempts it took Book to get that many yards, it seems like he’s trying to use context when it helps his premise and avoid it when it doesn’t.

    Having said that, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about UFs WRs in this game.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agreed. Getting a productive Campbell back this week would be huge for Georgia.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Will (the other one)

      Book had the best game passing compared to anyone else and it took Stokes and Campbell being out, and their TE coming back from injury and getting targeted heavy early to get there. Book’s second half numbers were Fromm-in-the-rain-vs-UK bad.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sammon is the most annoying homer and sunshine pumper on The Athletic. He rarely offers any real criticism of the Gators, even when Franks was under center. I’ll take real talk from Seth Emerson any day of the week.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Cojones

      While we have three injured players returning, FU also has a couple, but the one that has impressed me most is Toney. Early in the season, I thought he was the fastest receiver I’d seen to that point. Now he is returning for this game and will be a handful for our D. Hope Webb isn’t covering him.

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  4. dawgfan1995

    Tyrique Stevenson’s numbers are pretty good too, though having him listed at safety is … different.

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  5. Charlottedawg

    The closer this game gets, the more I’m worried that I’m not worried.

    We have legitimate problems on offense but Grantham has always had problems with highly ranked teams and power running offenses. (Florida is 44th nationally in def ypr and 31st in rushing defense according to CFB stats. Football outsider has Florida at #20 in DFEI) He also doesn’t do well against experienced QBs who can diagnose his play call, and tempo is his kryptonite. Check, check check and please dear God make tempo a check come Saturday.

    On the other side of the ball Florida has effectively abandoned the running game making them a one dimensional offense against what may be the best defense they will face all year. (Georgia DFEI is #3 in the nation, #7 total defense, #17 passing defense, ahead of LSU and Auburn in every category, again per college football outsiders and cfbstats).

    Assuming we don’t gift Florida a bunch of turnovers and special teams just hold serve, we should absolutely win despite our flaws. Aside from any given Saturday type chaos, a Florida win requires Mullen and Grantham outcoaching Kirby, who has better players who are also going to play this game desperate and hungry with their backs against the wall. It certainly can happen but objectively it’s more likely that it won’t.

    #FTMF

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    • James Stephenson

      I remember when we went hurry up against ND and it completely flummoxed them. I am hoping that was a preview of Saturday.

      Liked by 2 people

      • When UGA has gone hurry up, every team has gotten flummoxed…either a time out, slow play calling/wrong play calling has reversed our momentum gains, which in return perplexes those playing/watching the turn of events to out right say… WTF are we doing here!

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    • Mayor

      You had me until you said that business about Mullen and Grantham outcoaching Kirby. That happens every game, including the wins.

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  6. The offense isn’t lighting up scoreboards the way we want. The defense may not be fully battle-tested. The special teams are bi-polar. Florida looked elite going into the bye, and Georgia limped into the bye with two of the ugliest performances under Kirby, but you know what…

    Georgia wins by three scores. Why? Because, F.T.M.F.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Brandon M

      Florida looked elite by losing to LSU by 2 TDs and trailing USCe in the 4th quarter?

      Liked by 1 person

      • They went toe-to-toe with LSU for most of that game at night in Baton Rouge which the final score may not entirely demonstrate, and Florida was getting some of that SEC Officiating that only the truly elite receive in Columbia. The pollsters seem to think they acquitted themselves well over the past few weeks… at least compared to what everyone thinks about Georgia. Regardless, FTMF.

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    • Tyler

      Kirby’s rope-a-dopin TMFs.

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  7. jt10mc (the other one)

    This is a GREAT opportunity to bait them into mistakes.

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  8. Classic City Canine

    Looks like we can lock people down on the edge, but the middle of the field is open for business. Florida could take advantage of that. LSU or Bama would feast on that weakness.

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  9. practicaldawg

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Trask throw a few of his slow arcing rainbow passes deep into our secondary.

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  10. Mayor

    Our center scares me. Having a rush up the middle completely destroys any offense particularly a passing game.

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