You know you’re having a good season when…

Bill Connelly ($$) writes that your biggest flaw is that you haven’t had to score.

While quarterback Stetson Bennett IV has been fantastic filling in for and/or usurping starter JT Daniels — 69% completion rate, 95.2 Total QBR (first among passers with at least 50 dropbacks) and quite a few gorgeous play-action bombs — he hasn’t had to throw more than 21 passes in a game yet, and, incredibly, he’s thrown only 18 passes with Georgia ahead by less than 14 points[Emphasis added.]

That’s what covering double-digit spreads in the first quarter will do for a guy.

That Georgia has gotten this far without really needing a passing game is incredible, but we still don’t know what will happen when the Dawgs actually have to complete a pass in a close game.

Looking at the schedule, what’s your pick for when that happens?  (Or, dare I say it, if that happens?)

84 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

84 responses to “You know you’re having a good season when…

  1. Corch Irvin Meyers, Former Jags Corch (2021)

    My prediction is we better hope Daniels is healthy when we do need to throw to win. Given Kentucky’s defense, that could be as soon as this week.

    Bennett is a luxury, and I’m damn glad to have him to beat the likes of UAB, Arkansas, and Auburn, but he’s limited and because he’s limited it makes Monken’s offense limited.

    Some here think stating the truth about that is a knock on Bennett, but it’s not (and they ignore the positive things said to only focus on what they perceive is the slight). It’s just the truth.

    We need Daniels to win it all. To win the SEC. To probably secure the division. Even in acknowledging that, I’m happy we have Bennett.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. whb209

    Does everyone still believe that Stetson Bennett IV can not win the big game? I am not so sure he can’t win them all.

    Liked by 11 people

    • Corch Irvin Meyers, Former Jags Corch (2021)

      NARRATOR:

      He can’t.

      Liked by 3 people

    • He didn’t win the two big games last season — Dawgs need The Chicken Man.

      Like

      • Leggo5

        He didn’t beat Bama in the second half in Tuscaloosa last year. But, let’s not put the Florida loss on Stetson. Last I checked, we were up 14 when he was injured.

        I believe there is a higher ceiling with JT, but damn if Georgia fans shouldn’t be really proud and thankful to have Stetson on our team. He’s a great story and a good QB.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Texas Dawg

      The 2021 version of Stetson is vastly improved from the 2020 version. If Daniels can’t go, I have full faith in Stetson. His ability to scramble is something that Daniels is just not equipped to do. That’s a part of Monken’s offense that’s missing when Daniels is in just like there are going to be parts of Monken’s offense that are missing when Stetson is in.

      Liked by 4 people

    • JaxDawg

      I was on the “can’t win it all with SBIV” train, but I’m rethinking it. I’d rather have a healthy JTD, but SBIV has proved he is better QB than he was last year. We just don’t know how much he has improved because he hasn’t been really tested.

      I think it’s fair to consider most of the “he can’t win it all” noise was when he was playing with the 2020 defense. Lights out defense changes things. He’s shown can make all the throws and stretch the field. Maybe he’ll only need to do it a few times to win it all.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Harold Miller

      Is it just me or does Stetson Bennett IV passing to Ladd McConkey sound like something out of an intermural flag football game between the ATOs an Sigma Nus?

      Liked by 2 people

  3. godawgs1701

    I’d say the Alabama game, but now that we’re looking at a rematch with Auburn in the SEC Championship Game.. lol…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Biggen

    Bennett looks great. He is accurate, he can run, he knows the playbook, etc… The knock on him is he doesn’t have the arm like Daniels does. That first long pass to McConkey is probably a TD with Daniels back there.

    It’s probably still JTD’s team. But the longer Bennett plays (and plays well) the harder it will be to make the change.

    We are scoring more than 30 a game and that is with calling the dogs off in the 4th quarter and going full manball to run the clock out. Who is going to score at least that much in our regular season against our defense?? Hell, maybe even who in the country??

    Liked by 6 people

    • Texas Dawg

      Not sure JTD could throw it any further (and certainly not any better) than Stetson’s second strike the McConkey. That was 52 yards in the air right in stride ( he let it go at our 33 and McConey caught it at their 15).

      Liked by 4 people

      • Illini84

        I agree, Daniels throws short all the time.

        Liked by 2 people

        • scottg818

          Not so much this year…that was an issue in 2020, but with his knee healthy he wasn’t underthrowing deep balls this year.

          And some of the “underthrows” last year went ~55 yards in the air…Arian Smith is just really fast.

          Liked by 1 person

      • iusedtopostasmikecooley

        That’s how I see it too. I’ve been of a mind that things would run best of JT was in there but at this point I’m not sure why I think that or even if I still do. What throws in that Auburn game would JT have made better? If you want to pick at the slightly under thrown ball to McConkey, it was still a long pass for a completion. The touchdown to McConkey was perfect. There is no way JT does that any better. Bennett has made a hell of a case for himself lately.

        Liked by 4 people

    • Spell Dawg

      I have heard it said more than once that Bennett actually has the stronger arm. ~50 of the 60 yards on that TD bomb to McConkey came through the air. I think they are a wash (or close to it, at this point) on deep balls.

      Liked by 1 person

      • biggusrickus

        Daniels clearly has more zip on short to intermediate throws. I have no idea who could throw it farther downfield, though. Both have improved their deep ball accuracy.

        Like

        • Tony BarnFart

          Daniels’s height allows for a quick hitch passing game that would result in loads of swatted balls with Bennett. If you notice, we get Bennett into really deep drops presumably so he can see the entire field and avoid batted balls.

          Liked by 3 people

        • Spell Dawg

          No argument there, I think the short/intermediate stuff (while standing in-pocket) is where JT has the edge. Just pointing out what I’ve heard more than once.

          Also, Bennett sure does throw a pretty spiral, right? The Bower’s pass along the sidelines stuck out the most for me, but he spun it beautifully multiple times on Saturday.

          Like

    • classiccitycanine

      The knock on Bennett is primarily the decision making.

      Like

      • Harold Miller

        True, but his decision making this past Saturday looked pretty rock solid.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Texas Dawg

        Now with a year in Monken’s system, he understands what is to be expected much better. Understanding the system makes decision making much easier without having to really “think” about what he needs to do.

        Like

    • Harold Miller

      I am looking at the world through red and black colored glasses, but every other team except the Tide looks like grist for our mill.

      Like

    • tiredofidsearch

      JT had a ton of underthrown passes last year that would have been TD’s had he led the receiver. In fact he underthrew the deep ball more often than not.
      That being said, I hope that/maybe it was a function of him not totally trusting the knee yet but he hasn’t really played enough this year to know for sure.

      Like

  5. We thought UAB’s defense was tough. we thought Arky’s defense was tough, we thought going on the road to Auburn would be tough…I’m beginning to drown my inner Munson with optimism…UK will be challenging, but we have the tools to out perform them on all sides of the ball…SB looks as good if not better than Fromm to me…I’m keeping calm

    Liked by 9 people

  6. hertyfield

    It really is an interesting question. For me it comes down to who do I think will perform better on 3rd and long (which will eventually be required in a tough matchup). JT has been out of this world in that regard with 88% completion on 3rd and 4 or greater. But SBIV is no slouch at 69%, and brings the threat to run if linebackers drop into coverage. And maybe the answer then is situational. For defenses with a great front four, I might take Bennett to buy time and pick up a few first down with his feet; for teams with strong linebackers and secondary I like JTs ability to read the defense and find the open receiver better.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. practicaldawg

    The media is really struggling with how to process the concept of a defensive juggernaut in the aftermath of the Burrow/Tua era. Defense was supposed to be dead. Kirby brought it back to life.

    The reality is that when even your best opponents can’t score more than 10 points, there’s really no place for an offense that scores in seconds on every possession. Right now, Stetson appears to be the most ideal QB imaginable for the type of football Kirby wants to play. And make no mistake, this is absolutely Kirby’s wet dream. The Auburn game was such a perfect example. He went in and was able to play the exact type of game he wanted to. Even though it may have felt close at times, Kirby dictated the entire game to Auburn. It’s like he wrote a script and they were just actors in the play.

    Liked by 13 people

  8. We’re in a close game every game at kickoff. We do…and have…passed well to build those early leads. The underlying premise is JT is so injured he may not come back. I don’t think that’s the case, and if he can play this Saturday he’ll get some reps to knock the rust off getting ready for Florida. I’m suppose he may sit until the WLOCP knowing SBIV can rotate in if he struggles, but that doesn’t feel like a good QB management plan. If JT is hurting past JAX, then things get interesting headed into the SECCG.

    We want and need JT back because we need 2 QBs at the ready at all times.

    Liked by 1 person

    • practicaldawg

      But what’s even more beautiful is that even when the other DC tries to mitigate the early passing onslaught with safeties everywhere, Monken just runs the damn ball. See: Arkansas game. There’s really nowhere to hide from this offense, certainly not for more than a quarter.

      Liked by 1 person

    • munsonlarryfkajim

      my belief is that stetson would not have been keeping the ball and running any if JT wasn’t on the verge of being back at 100%.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. mdcgtp

    With all due respect to Bill C., this is the laziest narrative that keeps cropping up. Our coaches have ABSOLUTELY processed that giving a significant underdog a pick 6 is a vital ingredient in an upset and chosen to minimize the risk of such. Beyond that, we ran the ball against Arkansas because frankly that was what the defense dictated. Auburn stacked the box a bit more and got burned by it over the top. The notion that we didn’t have to throw the ball to win is ridiculous. Imagine the game without the long passes, take away those plays and who knows what the complexion of the game might have been.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. artistformerlyknownasbman

    I think the team can likely win every regular season game with either JT or Stetson at QB. How they win those games looks a little different. With Arkansas, the look was going to be much the same because of the Hogs’ defensive alignment. But generalizing a bit, I think for a game like Kentucky, JT can break it open a little faster and get UK down 2-plus TDs a little sooner than Stetson. The faster that happens, the sooner UK has to become one dimensional and pass, which isn’t their strong suit. That allows the defense to work differently and the python apples the pressure until there is no resistance. Kirby wants every game to end with clock-gobbling drives full of rotating running backs. That’s his victory cigar, and he wants to get there as fast as possible. For Vandy, he was there in the first quarter. For Auburn, he was there by the end of the 3Q.

    Like

  11. stoopnagle

    Any QB? Jacksonville.

    Like

  12. Derek

    The question isn’t whether we’re a more dangerous team with JT out there. If you can’t see that you’re blind.

    The question is: are we good enough everywhere else, in comparison to the teams we play, that Stetson’s limitations won’t cost us a win?

    I’d feel a whole lot better about answering that question in the affirmative if we were a lot healthier.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. Tony BarnFart

    As has been echoed above, we’re very clinical in our destruction of opponents thus far. And it’s boring to many in the media if you aren’t throwing bombs for TDs every drive. But we still do throw plenty of bombs.

    With this defense, you would be insane to not play the field position game until something easy over the top comes up. Our punter is elite and the best we’ve seen against our D this ENTIRE year as far as driving the whole field was Auburn’s opening FG drive. Our opponents are more likely to turn it over deep in their own territory than they are to drive the length of the field on our defense. We are playing the anaconda choke game to perfection.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. ericstrattonrushchairmandamngladtomeetyou

    “Looking at the schedule” as you say one needs only to look to this Saturday. This game is against the best Kentucky team possibly ever. I think Georgia will win but the game will be closer than the pundits are saying.

    Like

    • biggusrickus

      No, this is not possibly the best Kentucky team ever. They’re a pretty good team that got lucky against Florida.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Gaskilldawg

        Correct, BR. The 1951 SEC champions Kentucky team was really good, the 1976 Kentucky team that tied us for the SEC championship (we got the tiebreaker because we beat it head to head) and the 1977 Kentucky team that beat us 33-0 in Sanford Stadium and finished undefeated in SEC play was much better. That 1977 Kentucky team was a hell of a team; the best that part ownerships in thoroughbreds could buy.

        Liked by 3 people

    • scottg818

      We hear this every single week. Munson and Dooley really broke the psyche of Dawgs fans.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Down Island Way

        Do believe against klempzen there was a pass or two on 3rd down that kept the chains moving, when it mattered…there was a ton of football stuff that happened on that Saturday which may have had a direct effect on both teams going in the directions they are headed…

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Corch Irvin Meyers, Former Jags Corch (2021)

    Why is Stetson Bennett limited? Because he needs the run game to succeed. When a really good team takes away the run, we need a QB who can make every throw and read the field correctly to find the one open receiver on ever play.

    Stetson Bennett thrives on deep drops and play action passing, he does not do well in the quick throw game.

    This is the truth. Some here ignore it. When we can run the ball, we can win with Bennett at QB. When we can’t, no, Bennett isn’t going to look the same. We know we can win with Daniels throwing the ball 40 times when the run is taken away.

    That’s why we need J.T. Daniels to win the SEC and the National Title, because at some point, a team with a good defense is going to take away the run (maybe as soon as Kentucky this week, maybe Floriduh, maybe Bama, probably Tosu or Iowa or Cincy or Michigan State in the Playoff).

    Bennett is limited. He needs the run game help to have success. Yes, he can beat UAB throwing the ball, but UAB ain’t UK, FU, Bama, or the rest of the difficult teams we’ll face this year.

    This isn’t to run down Bennett. I was wrong about him early in the year, and I’m happy we have him to beat the Arkansas and Auburns of the world.

    J.T. Daniels can run the entire offense as it is designed to run. Bennett can’t. It’s that simple.

    Liked by 4 people

    • RangerRuss

      Daniels can run well, y’all. At least he could until the knee surgery. I don’t think his getting beat on is optimum for his health. That’s another good thing about him sitting a few games. It’s allowing the O line to jell plus saving JTD from the normal wear and tear on his body.
      The Dawgs got this.

      Like

    • The Truth

      See, my problem with Stet isn’t that he can’t make the throws, he’s proven to me this year that he can make the throws.

      My problem with Stet is a fear/concern that he’ll try to make a throw when maybe the best choice is to throw it to the hedges.

      Like

    • Gaskilldawg

      At some point in the near future both Daniels and Bennett will be healthy and the guy who designed the offense will let us know which QB is best at running the offense as it is designed to be run. I understand that his decision may not end the fans’ arguments.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. 69Dawg

    You young people aren’t old enough to remember Eddie “The Barron” LaBarron QB of the Washinton Redskins. He was small even by the standards of the 50’s but he could run and pass. SBIV’s greatest asset is his ability to run an RPO and the defense has to actually defend it. Moken showed Arky on the first play that he could and would call it if Arky’s LBers ignored SBIV. Now with JT the RPO has only one run threat so the LB’s can fill the gaps quicker. I have a though for you, if JT is 100% then start him but sub in Stetson when we need to play manball. Right now we have the advantage of the opposing team having to practice for both or QB’s. This takes practice time they really don’t have. Let’s hope that JT can come in and get some snaps under fire in the UK game but I would really like to make Todd G have to prepare for both.

    Like

  17. dawgphan34

    Right now I dont have any expectation that JT Daniels is going to play meaningful time the rest of the season. Bennett is the guy and they have to figure out how they can not just keep winning, but win the biggest games with Bennett.

    My main concern now is Bennett running the ball a little recklessly and taking shots when he doesnt need to. He has to stay healthy and taking shots to the head doesn’t help that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • RangerRuss

      That’s right, Dawgphan34. There are low class types who seek to injure QBs as part of their strategy. Look no further than those scumbags in Hogtown. I won’t forget the tech player who got pancaked and rolled 3 times until he took out Zeier’s leg. Bobo came in and lit their ass up for their trouble.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. joereynard25

    IMO there is no doubt that SB is limited by his height, as evidenced by the seemingly dozens of batted balls last year against quality D-Lines. I believe he can run the offense and throw as well as JTD, and his legs are a valued asset. But with a big game hanging in the balance, Stetson’s height is a liability when attempting those over-the-middle possession type throws that will be needed to keep the 2nd level from creeping up to the line of scrimmage, and keep the chains moving. That is not intended to be a knock on his abilities, just simple facts as they relate to the physics of football. A guy who’s listed at 5’10, and looks more realistically to be around 5’8 or 5’9”, is going to struggle throwing over the top of D Lineman who are 6’4 to 6’6” to a receiver 5 yards downfield in the box. We saw it against Florida and Alabama last year.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. W Cobb Dawg

    We may not “need” to score, but the objective of an offense should still be scoring. I’m not a fan of killing clock by generating a cloud of dust play after play after we get an acceptable lead – whatever that is. Even our subs need to be perfecting their game. If we get a TD or three out of it, so be it.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. If there’s 1:03 on the clock, we’re on our 25 and down by 6, I want JT at the wheel. If just down by 1, Bennett can get us in FG range.

    Like

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