Grantham’s Defense Not The Problem
When Grantham took over as defensive coordinator after last season, Georgia was coming off an 8-5 campaign full of defensive pains. Georgia had had two remarkably poor defensive seasons in a row; resultant: Richt gave Martinez his walking papers.
Martinez’s final defense was actually improved from the unit that held back a talented offense (Moreno, Stafford, Green, Massaquoi) the year prior. We’d started number one in the nation that season (not so long ago!) and ended up a distant national number ten. A real achievement overshadowed by a close loss to Tech and poor halves of play against strong programs: Bama and Florida.
Last year, we were markedly improved statistically on defense, yet still far from good, and the Joe Cox led offense also struggled with consistency. We dropped five games.
This year, we have given up a score on the opponent’s first possession in each of the past three games, going 0-3 in the SEC for the first time since 1993 and losing three overall games in a row for the first time in twenty years.
Overlooked in our 0-3 conference start, the defense has toughened, kept us in every game late and is not being pushed around to the tune of a lit-up scoreboard this season. Even as the offense has done little – besides mostly minimizing turnovers – to keep the team in games. Grantham has done a nice job getting our guys to mostly understand a new scheme and generally be in position to make plays. Give him a full year, and we may be back to downright dominant on defense.
And our special teams have been perhaps the strongest in the nation this year. The problem this season is clearly the lackluster offense.
The question of our coaching staff surviving the season is a real one, with all four of our biggest rivals still on the docket: Tennessee, Florida, Auburn, Tech. Richt should trust Grantham to manage the defense and take over play calling from Bobo sooner rather than later.
Sure the blocking has been bad, the presumed two-headed rushing attack of Caleb King and Washaun Ealey have still not played a full game together, and our only truly dangerous offensive threat has not worn shoulder pads this season. But the biggest problem has been the unfathomably conservative offensive coaching.
GEORGIA has not had a lead in any SEC game this season and seems to only open it up when desperation sets in and it is way too late. While Aaron Murray has exceeded expectations as a redshirt freshman starter. Bobo should be demoted – TODAY – to quarterback’s coach. The only job he has ever had much real success with, without the dominant running back services of Knowshon Moreno. Bobo’s pay can be cut in the offseason, and Richt can attempt to coach himself out of this ugly mess. As we as a rabid fan base already look forward to next season.