Win the trenches
It was probably more than just coach speak when Kirby Smart said this week that Tennessee was the best team Georgia has played this year - yes, better than Auburn.
A big reason for that is an experienced offensive line - and chair and finger jokes aside, having Cade Mays starting outside at tackle does not hurt, either.
Other than Alabama, this is likely the best offensive line Georgia will face, and it’s vital that the Dawgs win up front and force Jarrett Guarantano out of the pocket to make plays and also disallow the Vols straight-ahead run game to control things.
Let’s take a quick look at the stats on this one for starters. Tennessee had negative-one rushing yards, and Georgia’s defense flushed Guarantano into three second-half turnovers that slowly turned the game’s momentum.
The fact is that Tennessee was unable to open things up passing wise as Georgia shut its run game down. The pressure up front was a direct result.
Take advantage early
Say what you will about Tennessee’s string of wins being against weak foes, but wins and still wins, and this team is confident that it can win football games. The best way for Georgia to take advantage is to score early on and erode that confidence.
Oh boy...where to start. From the snap that Trey Hill that landed in the Raising Cane’s parking lot on Baxter Hill, George Pickens extending a Tennessee scoring drive due to an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on his own sideline and twice in a half being unable to gain a foot...the first half was less than desirable for Georgia. It did what it did not need to do - let a team like Tennessee think it had a chance. The Vols wilted under pressure in the second half...something Alabama won’t do next week.
Keep spreading things out
Last week’s coming out party for Kearis Jackson was big not just for him, but for Stetson Bennett as well as some strong chemistry between the two of them, not to mention showing that in Todd Monken’s offense, Jackson was carving himself into what amounts to a ‘safety valve’ for Bennett.
If Georgia can continue to establish Jackson as a secondary option and not allow Tennessee to just key on George Pickens, it’ll be a good day for Georgia offensively.
For some reason, George Pickens was not as big of part of Georgia’s game plan. That didn’t end up being as glaring due to another big output from Kearis Jackson with 91 receiving yards and a touchdown. Working Jermaine Burton’s speed in via an end around didn’t hurt. And who else ran through a wall with Jalen Carter’s touchdown catch?