Georgia Football: Disrespecting Hutson Mason Detracts from Todd Gurley
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There’s a theory out there that Georgia only relies on Todd Gurley because the offense is incapable of throwing the football. I don’t find that notion to be sealed water-tight with logic-based adhesive, but it’s out there.
What I do want to point out here is that embracing that ideology takes away from Todd Gurley. The truth of the matter is Georgia relies on Gurley because he’s the best damn football player on the (college football) planet. Georgia doesn’t need a whole lot of help from the passing game, trickeration or any gimmick to set up Todd Gurley because the offensive line is doing that. Georgia doesn’t (or at least hasn’t until this point) need a balanced offense because the team is scoring 45 points per game without one.
Hutson Mason isn’t Aaron Murray. He’s not going to hit his statistical markers. He doesn’t need to. He’s quietly quarterbacking—or “game managing”—an offense that is averaging 7.2 more points per game than Murray’s best unit did in 2012. To be clear: I’m not saying Mason is better than Murray. What I am saying is he may allow for the optimization of Gurley, Chubb and Michel (when healthy) and therefore the maximization of Georgia’s offense.
Ironically, that’s what fans clamored for last year. The “Feed Gurley” variation of the “Fire Bobo” campaign was at full steam last year, even as Murray put up more than solid numbers. The vocal minority of Georgia fans who are no disgruntled with the heavy reliance on the ground game and what they think it says about the passing game is likely the same group that didn’t like the reliance on balance in 2012 and 2013.
But please be aware: The more dirt you pile onto the passing game (which is 12th in the nation in completion percentage, in the Top 25 in fewest sacks allowed and in the Top 40 in efficiency rating) the more you take away from what Gurley is doing. He’s running the ball in expected situations and picking up yards, but that’s not just impressive because he’s Georgia’s only option on offense. It’s impressive because he’s the best option.
I’ve got more thoughts on loving this offenses here.
That’s all I got/