Preview 2018: Georgia Bulldogs. This Is Just The Beginning

Preview 2018: Georgia Bulldogs. This Is Just The Beginning

2018 Preview

Preview 2018: Georgia Bulldogs. This Is Just The Beginning

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What You Need To Know About The Georgia Defense

– It’s not like there’s a rebuilding job happening, but there are a few key losses. Linebackers Roquan Smith and Lorenzo Carter, were special, and in all, seven starters have to be replaced. But years of recruiting reloads the defense that finished sixth in the nation in total and scoring D.

The strength is in the secondary – at least early on – after finishing eighth in the nation in pass defense. Corners Deandre Baker is the all-around star, but Tyrique McGhee and Ameer Speed will be great options on the other side.

Safety J.R. Reed was second on the team in tackles, and there’s a whole lot of young talent ready to step in at the other gigs, starting with Richard LeCounte, a former star recruit with a world of upside as a possible statistical star.

– Okay, so how does Georgia possible replace Smith and Carter, and Davin Bellamy from the linebacking corps? It doesn’t in terms of instant leadership, but the talent is there. Sophomore Monty Rice will likely get the first shot at replacing Smith on the weakside, and Walter Grant has the upside to grow into a killer pass rusher on the strongside. D’Andre Walker will be one of the team’s better playmakers behind the line, and past off-field issues and all, Natrez Patrick has all-star potential on the inside.

– The line will be a rock again. Notre Dame transfer Jay Hayes is a massive boost to the interior of the defensive front as a part of a strong rotation along with Tyler Clark, a rising star with the upside to be the line’s best player.

The ends have to do more to get to the quarterback – the linebackers were the pass rushers – but that’s not always their job on this D. Jonathan Ledbetter is a big, productive body at the end of a three-man front. His job is to hold up against the run, and he can more than do that.

Biggest Key To The Georgia Defense

A few more plays behind the line would be a plus. The sacks kicked in over the second half of the season – there were 11 in the final three games – but there weren’t a ton of tackles for loss compared to several of the other top defenses.

Of course 34 sacks and 93 tackles for loss were great – but this was a national title-level D that finished 48th and 55th in the nation in those categories, respectively. By comparison, Alabama came up with 40 sacks and 111 tackles for loss with one less game.

NEXT: Top Players, Final Prediction & What Will Happen

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