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August 17, 2014

Getting off the field

Saw a quote from Todd Grantham about being tougher on 3rd down, which led me to this nugget:
"I think we've got to continue to work on our first and second down run defense. You need to create negative plays to put the offense in second and seven or more."
Cool story, bro.

Looking at UGA's split stats from last year, we were average at getting to 3rd down. 3rd down was a whole other story:
SituationGAttYardsAvg.TDLong1st10+20+
1st Down1325510073.9557523236
2nd Down131705593.29143239213
3rd Down13833103.7356932104
3rd Down, 1-3 To Go13391874.794692541
3rd Down, 4-6 To Go1017673.94136532
3rd Down, 7-9 To Go1011-3-0.2709100
3rd Down, 10+ To Go916593.69024131
4th Down712504.17143711

SituationGAttCompPct.YardsTDIntRatingLong1st15+25+
1st Down131287760.2101172141.4277402910
2nd Down131317456.585033113.988341186
3rd Down131136254.996172143.2099392112
3rd Down, 1-3 To Go57457.13600100.3423310
3rd Down, 4-6 To Go12361952.822711109.36441652
3rd Down, 7-9 To Go12321959.435140192.77681395
3rd Down, 10+ To Go11382052.634721141.4599765
4th Down810880.013410225.5673622

Just looking this over gives me the hives. Georgia was 64th in 3rd down conversions allowed with just a shade under 40% converted. But look at the third and long percentages, especially on passing, clocking in at a staggering 28%. Over 1/4 of all 3rd and longer than 7 yards, teams converted when they passed the ball.

For a more stark illustration, check out the SEC 3rd and 7-9 yards to go stats:
NameGAttCompPct.YardsTDIntRatingLong1st15+25+
Florida922731.8950249.9134422
Vanderbilt10211152.41531491.1939733
Kentucky11231147.81550195.7429752
LSU12301446.71870099.03331153
Texas A&M11301860.025003110.00291562
Missouri12281553.615310111.25381041
Mississippi State12342161.821200114.14261331
Tennessee9211047.614210120.1338541
Alabama12321650.026010128.56951063
Auburn12241458.320811136.5554933
Mississippi1121942.923110150.9760865
South Carolina12302066.729221163.76961052
Arkansas9231460.925210167.26881351
Georgia12321959.435140192.77681395

On the most obvious of passing downs, Georgia allowed a staggering passer rating of 192.77, a full 25 points higher than Arkansas.

Which is why I'm so nervous about how Pruitt works with our very young DB corp. Is there potential to improve? Absolutely. Will we? I'm not convinced, at least in year one.

Do we need to improve against the run in short yardage situations? Yes, we were terrible there, too. We have some beef returning and hopefully that experience, and talent, will pay off. But if you want a first step in improving getting off the field, doing so when you are expected to would be a great start.
TD

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