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October 1, 2012

3 Questions Answered: Tennessee

  1. Can we create the mismatches on the line to get our running game going? I was worried about the long plays sandwiching extremely pedestrian runs. We saw that in spades Saturday. Yes, Marshall and Gurley combined for nearly 295 yards, but as I worried about, taking out the three long runs, we only averaged 2.85 yards per carry on the other 36 runs. We can attribute some of that to the extremely conservative play calling at points in the game. Some is attributable to Tennessee selling out to stop the run at times. Either way, we blocked sufficiently well enough to get our guys free on those runs. We should be able, either through scheme or effort, to average more ypc taking out the long runs.
  2. Wicked TE play? Extremely wicked. By my count, Lynch and Rome caught all the passes thrown at them and both looked dominant as blockers, especially on the three long runs.
  3. Can we get the pressure on Bray to get him out of his comfort zone? Hell, we didn't try until late in the 4th quarter. I have as of yet to re-watch the game (not sure if I will until mid-week), so I might have a bit of in-the-presence jaundiced view working, but I spent the whole game waiting for a kitchen sink, sell the house blitz. It never really came. Yes, the game was won due to the pressure we got on Bray late in the game, but I don't think it comes to that if we do it earlier in the game. 
Overall, you'll take a win. The issues in number 1, with the low ypc outside of long runs, are mostly at the feet of Mike Bobo. The issues with number 3 will be remedied as Grantham feels more comfortable with the pass coverage ability of his new starters. 

Now, I'll get to the rushing defense later, but damn.


JRod1229 said...

Rome missed the drop in the end zone.. Murray didn't do any favors by throwing a bullet but it went through his hands. Otherwise great play. Lynch in the open field is fun to watch for sure.

Anonymous said...

Yikes...we score 51 and give up 44 and our concerns are with Bobo? Why is Grantham getting a pass after 5 weeks of excuses.

I will take any win. But something is wrong on D.

Anonymous said...

Tyler, I usually whole heartedly agree with you about things; however I have to say I totally disagree with you about your assessment of "conservative" play-calling and blame at Bobo. We gained 563 yards or thereabouts. We had several large negatives on 1or 2 reverse or reverse like plays that you should also take out if you are going to remove the long runs to look at average yards per carry. We tried many different things. We scored 51 points. We had a big time throw over the middle late in the game that likely would have been a TD if Wooten doesn't absolutely drop it. I may have a few things a little off. I'll have to review the game sdometime this week myself, but the offensive performance can only be called very good. We still had some drops, turnovers and a few penalties but this was a very good offensive performance and the fact is we rushed for big time yards.
As far as the rushes, I saw multiple blizes most of which Tennessees experienced offensive line simply did a great job picking up. # 74 showed extremely quick feet and honestly neutralized Jarvis. He had a great game. We didn't give up and we kept pushing and in the end when we needed it most we did get pressure.
The TE's were indeed awesome. This game was close because of poor special teams and early turnovers(I count 5 when you consider the unfielded punt and Gurley's step out of bounds on the Kickoff). All were in the 1st half though which means again that in crunch time we took care of the ball and Tennessee didn't.
I suspect our weekness against the run game late is indeed a function of number of plays on the field. We have to have some sustained drives.
I've gotta say I left the game very happy and winning a close one will help us somewhere. We will have to play better in Columbia, but I believe we will.

Tony Waller said...

I completely appreciate that view and of two minds about the performance.

However, we gained 16 yards in five drives in the last 18 minutes of the game. I agree with re:the pass that Woot missed; that was an inspired play call. It just felt a little too much like last year's 'get a lead, then hope we can kill enough clock that they can't catch us' offense.

I keep hearing their o-line did better that I am giving them credit for. I haven't watched it yet either, so I could be wrong about that. All I know is Tennessee out gained us 296-212 in the second half.

We won a game we didn't play our best in. We have to play better defensively next week.

Anonymous said...

If its a 175 or so yard rushing game with one 75+ yd carry on a blown defensive assignment or something, I can see not considering it when looking at the game as a whole, but this is a very different situation.

These big runs are happening in every game. Its sort of what we do at this point, and its going pretty well. Pound it till they spring one for a big gain.

Anonymous said...

At key points the playcalling WAS overly conservative. Its also predictable because we've fallen into that trap repeatedly over the years, sometimes costing us the game. When we coach scared we play scared. It turns into 5 minutes of inctedibly bad football that negates 10 minutes of an otherwise good quarter. It needs to STOP!

We also need to put trusted hands on returns. When our offense is backed up inside the 15, thats when Bobo turns from genius to wet nurse.

Simply put if the offense doesn't have these stretches UGA beats SC, MSU, and UT by 3 scores and our defense doesn't get drug up and down the field.

Anonymous said...

I'd argue that those pedestrian runs and the big runs are two sides of the same coin. When they put 8 in the box, we score if we get to the second level (like on Marshall's 1st TD). But we have to read their D & block perfectly for that to happen, so we'll hit the wall at some point. Still, the risk of a 3-yard run is worth the reward of a 75-yard burner (YMMV).

Occasionally, I'd like to see more of a grind-it-out offense take control. But if our game plan works like it's supposed to work -- score on big plays, play D, and build up morale-killing lead -- there's no need for it. That may hurt us against a man team like SC or UF, and we'll have to decide whether we try to do what we don't do well (grinding) or go back to our quick-score plays.

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