Are defenses figuring out Bryce Young?

Bill Connelly ($$) thinks it’s starting to look that way.

We long ago penciled in this game as the one that would tell us what we need to know about Bennett and the Georgia attack. Whether that remains the case will depend on whether Bama can actually give Young enough time to run the Tide offense. That’s increasingly been an issue. Opponents have done a good job of covering up Young’s quicker reads, forcing him to look downfield and, in the process, sacking him more frequently.

Forcing Young to look downfield is a double-edged sword, as he will complete some of these passes for big gains. But opponents have figured out how to create more negative plays, and the effects have been clear.

You can rest assured that Georgia’s coaches and a host of analysts have been pouring over the tape from those games.  From what I saw in the Iron Bowl, Mason was very aggressive attacking the line of scrimmage and Young (until he wasn’t, but that’s another story).

The question is how far does Lanning have to go to produce similar issues.  Bill suggests not so far.

Georgia manages to create constant pressure despite blitzing only 22% of the time (80th in FBS), and it let opponents fire short passes, swarming and gang-tackling for minimal gains. Perhaps screens and quick passes will gain just enough to allow Bama to stay on schedule and keep Young out of trouble. But against a defense that ranks first in success rate, first in explosive play rate and forces three-and-outs an incredible 50% of the time (also first), Alabama will either have to play by far its best offensive game of the season or force Bennett into mistakes he hasn’t made all season…

This only gets easier for Georgia’s defense if Alabama can’t run the ball effectively.


Filed under Alabama, Georgia Football, Stats Geek!, Strategery And Mechanics

34 responses to “Are defenses figuring out Bryce Young?

  1. Derek

    That last sentence is everything. For both teams really.

    The team that can run it wins.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. miltondawg

    If what I heard from Rick Neuheisel this morning is accurate and Brian Robinson is out or not will be effective, Bama will likely have to use their only scholarship RB plus some combination of other athletes in the backfield (including their backup QB). Bama having any sustained effectiveness running the ball in that situation is unlikely.

    Liked by 4 people

    • These are the kinds of games where some backup runningback comes off the bench and suddenly has a 200-yard game because the other team thought the rushing attack wouldn’t be effective.

      Luckily, Kirby ain’t the coach who makes that mistake.

      Go Dawgs.

      Liked by 12 people

      • originaluglydawg

        How many times have we seen it.? Some unheralded kid is called on and has the game of his life. Like Kyle Trask when he got scraped off the bench to play QB..
        These kids aren’t signed up at Bama because they can’t play.
        But we KNOW Robinson is a load to hem up and bring down.

        Liked by 3 people

        • miltondawg

          Agreed when that game happens in the regular season like a September Georgia vs. South Carolina game. But tomorrow this Georgia team is not going to be surprised, unprepared, etc.

          Liked by 1 person

      • Derek

        Hines Ward had a good night running the ball in Tuscaloosa back in 1994.

        And Brother Bill Oliver wasn’t a bad DC.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. whb209

    forces three-and-outs an incredible 50% of the time. That is incredible.
    Being number 1 in points allowed is also incredible. If GA gave up twice as many points as they have given up, they would still be #1 in points allowed.
    That is also an incredible stat (almost unbelievable). As good as the defense is, I think they are still underrated.

    Liked by 9 people

  4. charlottedawg

    As I said before the closer this game gets the more worried I become that it’s becoming increasingly hard to worry.

    If Robinson is out or severely limited, from an offense that generated 6 rushing yards against LSU and negative rushing yards in the first half against Auburn how the hell are they going to run the ball against our front 7? And if they can’t run the ball, how in the hell are they going to score? An unexpected rash of turnovers from our offense? It could happen but that’s pretty tough if that’s what you’re banking on to generate enough points. Aside from that their most viable plan on offense looks to be either very quick throws or young buying enough time with his feet to allow metchie and Jameson Williams to get free for big plays, but he’d have to do that repeatedly.

    As Ben dukes wrote on his blog, this game feels A LOT like the 2019 seccg. 11-1 team who’s had some close wins hoping to knock off #1, who’s just cruised all year and in doing so would salvage a playoff berth. They’re hoping that they’re good enough to hold off a record setting unit on one side of the ball (LSU’s offense in 2019, our defense this year). And oh BTW they’re going to have to do it with their best running back out or hurt (Robinson for bama, Swift in 2019). We all know how 2019, we came out desperately trying to throw a couple haymakers early. But LSU’s offense completely overwhelmed our pretty good defense. Meanwhile James “couldn’t score in a whore house” Coley was his usual inept self against LSUs defense, what was thought to be the one potential chink in the armor for LSU.

    Liked by 8 people

    • 79dawg

      So you’re saying when they have us backed up towards our own end zone at the start of the second half and Stetson is scrambling for his life, don’t worry we’re about to rip off an 80-yard pass to effectively seal the game???


  5. siskey

    Did y’all know that Kirby has coached a number 1 team in the AP poll as many weeks as Vince Dooley?

    Liked by 6 people

  6. Cover. Under.

    Bama has some very favorable intangibles. Back against the wall. Win it all to show the world who #1 still is. Saban. Depth. Experience.

    But intangibles only matter when the matchup is close. When you really compare each position, we are clearly the better group this year. Auburn just held them to 3 points (until Auburn reverted to being Auburn). We’ve got this.

    Liked by 4 people

    • originaluglydawg

      Yeah, but I give the nod to UGA on depth. Running backs, receivers, tight ends, Quarterback and probably linebacker are all deep for the Dawgs. Bama out of RBs and apparently O linemen is a problem for them.
      I think what we are all sweating a little is that Saban will scheme around Georgia’s strengths and find a way. And also that SB could allow this to be the game where he reverts to his previous errors.
      Neither is likely to happen, but until I hear the word “impossible” instead of “unlikely”, I’ll be on pins and needles.

      Liked by 5 people

  7. beatarmy92

    I don’t know how Bama effectively runs the ball. Not consistently.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. ApalachDawg aux Bruxelles

    the only regret i have is that i have to wait until 10pm local time to watch the game
    a lot of jack daniels is going down in Bruxelles

    Liked by 7 people

    • armydawg

      May I suggest going to the “Grand Place” prior to the game. There is (or used to be) a quiet but excellent French restaurant tucked away in a corner where I had the best “Steak au poive” ever. This was in 1975 when I was stationed in Europe and my wife and I honeymooned in Brussels. Also, a few glasses of good Burgundy. That should put you in the right frame of mind for the game. You’re lucky to be living in such a beautiful city. Bon chance, mon ami.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. ASEF

    Are defenses figuring out Bryce Young?

    Probably. It’s the toughest part about playing QB in the SEC – all that talent on defense, coaching and players, will find your preferences and weaknesses pretty quickly. And then the real test begins. Can you adapt?

    Young’s a very good QB, but he’s not even close to moving through his learning curve, he’s missing his top 3 running backs, and he’s got 2 spots on his offensive line that remain question marks.

    Going against a generational defense guided by a brain trust of Kirby, Lanning, and Boom.

    Oh, and they had the last 3 weeks to prep a game plan.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. practicaldawg

    Kind of makes me wonder if this is like Clemson’s last national championship where they fully solved Tua. Everyone still attributes that game to one where “offenses win championships,” but if you watch that game, it’s clear the Clemson defense absolutely stonewalled Alabama’s run game and took away all of Tua’s reads.


  11. RangerRuss

    Finebaum Show is an unwatchable den of geeks.

    Liked by 6 people

  12. originaluglydawg

    I’ll betcha that Saban is going to go Josh Heupel on Georgia tomorrow.
    Gambling on fourth down like a drunken Fish Frier.
    He knows he has to extend drives, even if it’s risky.
    He’s got better players than Heupel…so he’s going to feel like that’s his best shot.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. TripleB

    I hesitate to be confident, but I truly believe our defense will have a plan (coaching) and the ability (players) to put the shut down on their ass. The only thing I can figure that Bama. thinks they can try is bombs and
    qb runs. I think Kirby and crew have already figured how to guard against that. If we score a little, without crazy turnovers, I believe we win.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Illini84

    Wake up Dawgs!!!

    Liked by 5 people

  15. olddawg22

    Perfect day to add to that SEC Championship list!!! Packing the car for a little trip down to Mercedes!

    Liked by 4 people