Georgia Football Knee Jerk Reactions: Missouri Edition


28 is more than 27.

As I had my (really, the number is unimportant)th vodka drink and the clock in Columbia, Missouri hit triple zeroes, the audio recording of my reaction would make one think we lost by 30. In a vacuum, any night where the defense forces 5 turnovers, we start a true freshman at quarterback on the road against a very good defense, and that freshman also throws a BEAUTIFUL touchdown on a 4th down to win the game should be a good night.

It. Was. Not.

Offensively, the problems of the last three weeks years still dominated the conversation, as this was about as uneven a performance you have ever seen out of a Georgia team. But, they stayed the course, they kept their collective heads about them, and they pulled out a win in hostile territory. For the first time this season, I have to go to the coaching cliche well and remind us all: Winning hides the problems, losing magnifies the problems, but there are always problems.

This was never truer Saturday night.

The Good:

– That last drive was a thing of beauty. Sure, there were some errant balls and ill advised forced throws, but it’s amazing what a blitz beating toss against the best corner Mizzou had on 4th down can do for the spirits. Eason showed steel in his spine and ice water in his veins during that last march, and there isn’t more you can ask for out of a kid on the road for the first time.

– Offensive line is better at pass blocking than run blocking; I know that sounds like I’m damning them with faint praise, but I actually mean this one! Mizzou ALWAYS has monsters on the defensive line even amidst recent changes, and the 2016 edition looks to be no different. Great job by the big fellas up front buying the kid time, and good job by Eason to use that time to carve up the secondary.

– Isaiah McKenzie is going to keep me from drowning myself in whiskey this season. Maybe.

– We forced 5 turnovers. FIVE. The defense hit hard all day, and made plays where they were able. I was especially happy with holding the Tigers to fewer than 100 yards on the ground all day.

The Bad:

– The aforementioned five turnovers? Yeah, we turned those into zero points. None. Zilch. Nada. Goose egg. No way you win football games, particularly in conference, without exploiting the mistakes you force your opponent into. Quick scores after sudden change are a great way to engender confidence in your team, and make the opposing sideline hurry to change their scheme to reply. But hey, 28 is more than 27.

– 55 passes. I know Chubb and Michel are coming off of injury and the offensive line isn’t exactly the best unit in the world (I said this with considerably more expletives this weekend), but we need to establish a running game, if only not to overload Eason 4 games into his career. Teams always load the box against our power attack, but it’s time to integrate more edge rushing to loosen up the inside, since we don’t want to be passing 55 times. But, again, 28 is more than 27.

– Giving up almost 400 yards through the air is NOT a good day, I don’t care how many turnovers you force.

The Ugly:

– Stupid, stupid penalty on the punt coverage late that could have been costly to the team. We joke about UGA Special Teams, but we finally got a coach, so can our Special Teams please be less…special?

– COLLEGE KICKERS.

Look, I’ve been accused (here and elsewhere) of a tendency to lose the trees for the forest, that I get so preoccupied with the bigger picture that I have trouble enjoying victories. Informal poll UGA fans: when that game ended, did it feel like a win? Or were you lost in the euphoria of the last drive and final takeaway by our defense? Because I went back, rewatched, and tried to be as objective as possible, and I still have no idea how we left with a W. And I just don’t think that’s a sustainable way to play football.

Go Dawgs.

Love this? Hate it? Think I’m an idiot? Don’t just curse at me under your breath, head to the Movie Trailer Reviews to catch the latest episode of Unanimous Decision and hear about all my sports takes. Follow me at @dpalm66.

Posted on September 19, 2016, in Blog. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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