I noticed a fair amount of overwrought reactions to the excerpt from Seth’s piece yesterday that I posted. That was just one part of a bigger picture he painted. Nobody knows exactly how much the absence of spring practice will affect Georgia’s offense — well, nobody outside of some Florida fans and some pundits, that is — because everybody will react differently to a new offense and, in Jamie Newman’s case, new teammates.
That being said, it’s neither Newman’s nor Todd Monken’s first rodeo. The idea that the quarterback Kirby Smart scouted and pursued is going to walk into his first practice next month and become immediately overwhelmed is probably unlikely. Sure, he’s going from the ACC to the SEC, but c’mon, be realistic. That’s not the same as this:
Between those two seasons of offensive struggle, it’s no coincidence the worst one was 2016, when the quarterback was a freshman. Kublanow said the adjustment was bigger because Jacob Eason, as talented as he was, still had to make the adjustment from high school to college, which is a bigger adjustment than veteran players learning a new offensive system.
“The offensive systems, a lot of them are close to the same. I think if you’re an older guy they’re not typically hard to figure out, because you’ve been through a system and you understand things,” Kublanow said. “(Newman) knows the ins and outs of what a college offensive playbook is like. Obviously we do a lot of different things than what Wake Forest does, and it might be a little more intense because we’re in the SEC and not the ACC. But from a knowledge perspective I’m sure he’ll be able to get in and move pretty quickly.”
The bigger issue for me is this: “Spring practice is when you run quarterbacks through situations, such as third-and-longs, see what they do well, then adjust over the summer. Now it has to all take place during the preseason.”
Offsetting that to some extent is that the preseason will be a little longer. Will that be enough? Maybe I’m putting too much faith in him, but I have to believe Todd Monken will figure out a way to get enough of his offense installed before the season’s start to see what his guys do well… and what they don’t do well. (Along those lines, I don’t foresee a lengthy quarterback battle because that’s a luxury Monken probably doesn’t have sufficient time to indulge.)
It may not be optimal, but with that defense, functional should more than suffice to get going.
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