In what’s becoming vey commonplace, Georgia roundly beat Auburn on Saturday night, 27-6. It came as a result of doing many things well. Here’s how Georgia responded to meeting some keys to a win.
As long as he is at Georgia, Auburn will place a target on the back of George Pickens. Emotions will be high (see the TV overplaying the story of how many Georgia natives play for Auburn).
The long and short of it is that in a game like this, Georgia cannot afford 15-year unsportsmanlike conduct penalties that kill drives or result in costly mistakes.
This ended up being a non-factor or Georgia. The only thing egregious was the targeting penalty that should not have been against Richard LeCounte, and the only result from it was the extension of an Auburn drive that got three points.
Own the gaps
Between Chad Morris and Gus Malzahn, there are bound to be wrinkles and gadget plays. For this reason, Georgia needs to play assignment football and not get outside of lanes in the front seven, defensively. If Georgia does that, the odds of ‘chunk plays’ are lessened.
Not only did Georgia dominate up front and force Bo Nix to run for his life, the Dawgs also held the Tigers to 216 yards, 39 on the ground. The only thing of substance that Georgia got taken advantage of was a handful of third and fourth and shorts when Auburn’s mammoth JJ Pegues got in the game. Otherwise, Georgia contained anything Auburn did offensively.
Don’t lose it early
The unknowns are still there at QB for Georgia. Was Stetson Bennett that good or is Arkansas that bad? Was D’Wan Mathis just out of sync on a fluke? Is it JT Danel’s team and we do not yet know it? Either way, Georgia cannot afford offensive turnovers early on and getting into an early hole.
Georgia didn’t just avoid turnovers early. It also made the plays it needed in order to get on the board early. More than anything, that appeared to help Stetson Bennett settle in and prevent Auburn from keying on Georgia’s ground game.