Ole Miss 45, Georgia 14. Here’s what matters about the Rebel win.
Ole Miss 45, Georgia 14
Amazingly enough, it’s easy to look a whole lot better when you don’t play Alabama or Florida State.
Ole Miss got the Chad Kelly game it needed, with the star completing 18-of-24 passes for 282 yards and two scores in the blowout, but this was a total team effort to dominate the young Bulldogs.
Jacob Eason will be tagged with the 16-of-36, 137-yard, one score day, but his receivers didn’t help the cause, especially early, with a whole slew of drops and missed plays. The Bulldog running game was okay with a few nice runs, but there was nothing to do once the Rebel avalanche started rolling.
It would be nice if Ole Miss had a running game other than Kelly – who led the team with 53 yards and a score. It would be good to not have to rely on the NFL-caliber quarterback to do everything to make the offense go. But the defense showed off just how good it could be at coming up with the big play and key stop, and it’s nice when you have a playmaker who can take advantage of just about every break by throwing it up and letting the the talented receivers – and, maybe, the best tight end in the country in Evan Engram – go and get it.
While the Rebels avoided the 1-3 disaster and got back among the living, it’s going to be a process for Georgia under Kirby Smart. He needs Nick Chubb to be healthy and with room to move – he suffered an ankle injury against the Rebels – and he’ll have to hope for a sharper passing game with Eason needing to work through the growing pains. After such a great comeback to beat Missouri on the road last week, now the Dawgs need to blow this off quickly, because …
What Does This All REALLY Mean?
Now it’s on for Georgia. Losing to Ole Miss in a blowout doesn’t matter if the Dawgs come back to beat Tennessee next week. Do that, and then with South Carolina and Vanderbilt to follow, the Florida showdown will be for almost certainly be for the SEC East title. Considering how mediocre the Vols have been, and how much time there is before dealing with the Gators, Georgia has time to sharpen up.
Ole Miss gets revenge-time against Memphis next week, and then comes the showdown at Arkansas after a few weeks off. At least the Rebels were able to show off what it could potentially become. This is still a dangerous team with the ability to dominate, and now, after a rocky first few weeks, it’s going to be a fight to get past every week.