Missouri 41, Georgia 26: Two Post-Game Thoughts

Kevin C. Cox

Needed no validation. We already belonged before this game, y'all.

To Georgia's fans: Get better. We know how much it sucks to have your best players out or less than 100%. It can rob you of a special season. That's not about gloating or patronizing. That's just real talk.

1. This pass rush is real

Georgia's offensive line is solid. More importantly though, Aaron Murray is one of the best in the business at manipulating the pocket. We saw some of that today. It's not about sacks. It's about the ability to affect the entire passing game. Sometimes interceptions are an illusion. They are an artifact of poor pass defense. The occasional home run you can hit, even when you have no clue what you're doing at the plate. In Missouri's case the interceptions are the finishing touch on a defense that just terrorizes passing offenses. In truth, Murray State and Toledo may have had the best plan, and we saw UGa adopt it in the second half. Force Missouri into nickel and run on it. When you pass, get the ball out of the quarterback's hand. Get it out quickly.

(For that reason, I think South Carolina is a horrible matchup for us.)

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the interior push from Dan Hoch, Josh Augusta, Marvin Foster (and sometimes Ealy when he moves inside) that is allowing Michael Sam, Kony Ealy, Marcus Golden, Shane Ray, et al. to wreak havoc.

2. This offensive line is real

It's not dominant, at least not yet. But it is plenty good enough to run this offense and score on anyone.

The second half was a problem today, but I thought the blocking by the offensive line was mostly fine. I'll need to look at the game again, but I didn't see a lot of interior push from UGa, save a couple third-quarter drives. (The Dawgs have a very talented front seven. Even their secondary is athletic and has potential. They're just young and taking their lumps against a lot of seasoned QBs right now.)

The TD drive with Mauk following Ponder's interception was a "grown man's" drive for this offensive line. There are some negative plays to worry about, but a lot of those were not on straight dropbacks or standard running plays. (The wide receivers were great on blocking in the first half, not so much in the second.)

Bonus point

Oh, L'Damian Washington. Playing through the contact on Sasser's throw. You not just try'na be SEC. You try'na be NFL.

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