On the day in which Georgia honored Mark Richt, the Bulldogs, ironically, started slow in a noon kickoff against an outmatched opponent. In the end, it didn’t matter in a 43-6 win for Georgia.
Here’s how Georgia met the keys to a win.
The Task At Hand
There’s no way around it. This team is bad. Not Vanderbilt bad, but close. They did have to fight hard to beat the Commodores last weekend, for what it’s worth.
That said, if Georgia has a post-Cocktail Party hangover, it could make things uneasy. We’ll find out Saturday with a Noon kickoff and coming off the Florida game how focused this team is.
It wasn’t the best of starts for Georgia, and simply stated, if Georgia has a defense and special teams start next week against Tennessee or in the SEC title game, the Dawgs could be in trouble. Mizzou rotated in two quarterbacks due to injury - Tyler Macon and Brady Cook, and partly due to that, got an early field goal to lead 3-0. The lengthy punt return given up early was not great to see either.
Georgia started slow, but the good news is that the Dawgs adjusted as the game went on.
Own the line
Georgia has an edge in its run game, both in its backs and offensive line. This needs to be a game in which Georgia controls the tempo by eating up time off the clock and flat-out imposing its will against Missouri.
For a half, Georgia’s run blocking, especially within the interior, had trouble getting sledding before pulling away to lead 26-3 at the half. It could have been a bit bigger, but a goal-to-go turned into field goal partly due to an offensive penalty that all of America knew of Kirby Smart’s disappointment regarding it. I mean - between Kirby Smart and Joc Pederson being in the same place, there had to be at least one hot mic moment expected...
You don’t want to look ahead, but Tennessee looms next week, and will be a tougher challenge. The last thing Georgia needs to do is to stumble into Knoxville after not playing well. That means don’t fill the game with pre-snap penalties and ill-advised turnovers. Whoever the quarterback is for Georgia, interceptions need to be very few.
Overall, Georgia avoided mistakes to slow the pace down, being penalized four times for 25 yards, and the lone interception was a tipped pass thrown by JT Daniels. The last thing that Georgia needed was for a sloppy game to simmer for a week going to Knoxville, and the Dawgs avoided that.