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Kirby Smart must answer one question for the Georgia offense: Is JT Daniels even an option anymore?



  • DawgnSCDawgnSC Posts: 111 ✭✭✭ Junior
    edited December 2021

    Clemson had, and still does have a top 5 defense. And all summer to game plan! WHO CARES what the score is??? As long as the DAWGS are on top! I’d take a 3-2 win over a 41-24 beat down! The problem isn’t Stetson or JT. The problem is that nobody, including Kirby, will never know what the outcome would have been because he didn’t try JT. I’m not for or against either guy, and YES, everyone around them, including the entire team, has to play well around them! But to not change because of “that’s my guy”? Even the casual football fan knows something is up. Yeah Clemson is 19 now, but they were top 4 in September.

  • BubbaBillBubbaBill Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
    edited December 2021

    So if Kirby had started JT Saturday (assuming he is available and not injured or limited in some way) and JT got massacred and sacked multiple times……then some of you guys would be criticizing Kirby’s decision and offering a litany of excuses. It’s clear to me that Kirby is in a “no win” situation.

  • BubbaBillBubbaBill Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
    edited December 2021

    If Kirby starts JT against Michigan and he flops then Kirby is a goat for not playing Stetson. Some fans will be saying JT was “rusty”, “injured”, etc. The excuses will be non-stop. If Kirby starts Stetson and we lose then folks will be screaming bloody murder and asking why he didn’t play JT. If we win the game then some fans will be saying the QB who sat on the bench would have done better. In other words, Kirby can’t keep everyone happy which is clear on these DawgNation blogs. I sincerely believe he will make the correct decisions even if we don’t agree with them. Don’t forget, Kirby has more to lose than all of us combined. Besides, he is at every practice and knows what is really going on while we literally don’t have a clue. Go Dawgs!!!

  • VetdawgVetdawg Posts: 437 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    And do you know this for fact or is it what you’ve been told?

    ……asking for a friend

  • reddawg1reddawg1 Posts: 2,117 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing that doesn't work, over and over again. Stetson has maxed out at 24 points twice against BAMA. Let's give him another shot you say. 5 td's and 5 INT's . Another 1 or 2 that should have been. Is that good enough? Against BAMA? Will that performance again get us over the hump?

    SB is 1 and 3 against FLA and BAMA cumulative. HIs biggest games. His claim to fame is he beat a train wreck in FLa this year. But he was about to head into half-time with 3 points against FLA until the defense did what it did.

    JT is 2-0 against basically the same Cincy team that is in the playoffs this year and against Clemson. Two really big games at the time. I know Clemson fell apart with their offense but at the time we played them their defense was no joke. Clemson just beat the mess out of South Carolina who beat Auburn the week before who gave BAMA all they could handle. Go figure.

  • DawgnSCDawgnSC Posts: 111 ✭✭✭ Junior

    No he started Stetson, that didn’t work. You don’t know just as the rest of us what would happen to Daniels because he didn’t get a chance, so that argument holds no water.

  • T_DawgT_Dawg Posts: 22 ✭✭ Sophomore

    Of course everyone knew Jt wasn’t gonna start in the championship game.But not to even give him a chance when it was clear there was no chance with Stetson..come on. As well as not giving the guy much playing time at all during the season when he got healthy.

  • IowadawgfanIowadawgfan Posts: 60 ✭✭ Sophomore

    Good point .. now that u asked I’m gonna ask you .. did you really watch the throws that were or were not being made of Bennett.. there was only one throw I saw all year long that he threw the ball before the defender broke and that was a wheel route to bowers .. otherwise most guys were getting the ball wide open or had to make an excellent catch in coverage .. or worse the ball thrown in the dirt over there head or not to a wide open guy at all cuz he was locked onto a receiver .. you can’t have it both ways .we don’t no what jt could’ve done but I no what bennett did and didn’t do .. so if your defending and asking people questions maybe you should also watch the throws and non throws

  • E_RocE_Roc Posts: 842 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Mike, I appreciated this article and found it to be well put-together. Then you seemed to veer off course a bit with this comment. I don't know about this report that was mentioned. The "dumb coach" line makes me skeptical, considering what the Daniels had to say about Smart after the 2020 season. But no, the explanation that you're presenting here is not such a "simple concept." I think this notion that Smart is simply playing favorites is pretty poorly reasoned, given what we know and don't know. Add to that the fact that just last year we saw JT Daniels mysteriously riding the bench much longer than expected, only to find out that he was still recovering after we all thought he was good to go. It's happened before, recently, with this same coach and quarterback, yet many look right past that and are ready to assume Smart is now deliberately going out of his way to avoid playing the guy we know he wanted to be the starter, for no good reason.

    I don't claim to understand what's happening here; I'm as mystified as anyone. Clearly, being in a high profile position of power/responsibility does not make one immune to weird and/or ill-conceived decisions. But I think we can all agree that we haven't gotten a full explanation for Bennett starting over Daniels - at least, not one that rings true as a full, plausible explanation. And until we do, I think the most reasonable assumption is that Daniels isn't as healthy as Smart/doctors would like.

    I expect that explanation will come after this team plays its final game. Either we'll hear that Daniels was injured; or we won't, and will have no choice at that point but to take Smart at his word and conclude that he stuck with Bennett despite all the reasons to go with a healthy Daniels instead. Who knows, maybe we'll even have a national championship when we get this long-awaited (relative) certainty. I'm not terribly confident that it'll happen with Bennett, but there's nothing left to do at this point except hope. Nobody's right about everything, eh? But either way, I'm almost as anxious to get this exit brief, of sorts, as I am for the playoff to get here. For better or for worse, they should both involve getting some real answers about what this team is and how it's being run.

  • MontanaDawgMontanaDawg Posts: 1,072 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    @stone...hahaha...you won't let that dog lie, will you?

    Nope. My bet is Beck is gone via transfer and that's fine with me. The QB room is too full as it is right now, and Kirby will be flipping a coin to decide who starts next season.

  • DawgnSCDawgnSC Posts: 111 ✭✭✭ Junior

    Yeah Stetson looks good against the Tech’s of college football. Bama ain’t Ga Tech. What does Kirby have to lose besides to Saban again? If I’m not mistaken, Mark Richt got fired for 9-3, 10-2 seasons. He’s a top recruiter, but still has to win the Big one to be elite. Richt has quarterbacks for sure. Kirby has two choices as I see it. Get out of the way, or get much better!

  • E_RocE_Roc Posts: 842 ✭✭✭✭ Senior
    edited December 2021

    This might be more snarky than I'm intending. This whole conversation is exhausting, and I'm trying to get this off my chest before dinner so I can enjoy the rest of my evening. So apologies in advance.

    • 2021 - JT comes out with an injury and loses job to Bennett and doesn't start again

    I'll leave this to the million other comments on the subject.

    • 2020 - Smart chooses Mathis as the opening game start. Coincidence that he is the "feel good choice"? He proceeds to look awful going 8/17 with just 55 yards. How did he win the job? JT cleared to play, but doesn't start until Bennett has an injury and then JT is the starter for the rest of the year

    If you weren't there for practice, I don't see how you can question a decision on who should start week one, with all options being untested with any meaningful game reps. And Daniels' "clearance to play" wasn't what we thought it was.

    • 2019 - Fromm is the defacto starter and even though Bennett had better stats for the 27 attempts, he doesn't get a chance to start

    27 mop-up attempts? I'm not even sure what your point is supposed to be here.

    • 2018 - Fromm remains starter. Fields gets 4 TDs on 39 passes, but is generally ignored.

    There's a lot you're skipping over here. What's left to be said? I'm not trying to be glib here, honestly, but can you tell me what indication there was that Fields was ready to lead a team to a championship in 2018? He didn't do it as a sophomore or junior, with a widely respected offensive coaching staff at an elite program that bent over backwards to accommodate him. But he was ready as a true freshman? And if you're going to concede that he wasn't, then how should he have been the starter on a team that otherwise had championship potential? Surely you don't think he would have been satisfied with anything less than the starting job?

    • 2017 - Eason gets injured, Fromm starts and doesn't lose the starter role till he graduates. Eason only gets 7 pass attempts all year.

    Was there not a noticeable improvement from one snap to the next when Fromm came in for Eason? And what did Eason ever really do before or since? He had a few nice plays his freshman year, but finished with a 50-something completion percentage. And that was including a lot of jet sweeps that were essentially handoffs that were counted as completions. I don't recall what exactly he did at Washington, but I don't think it was anything special.

    • 2016 - Eason starts with no practical competition

    Wasn't Lambert the starter the whole previous season? I'm not saying he was very good or should have been the starter (like everyone else, I wanted to see Eason). But if, as you suggest, Smart values staying the course above all else, there's no way Eason would have gotten in as early as he did.

  • DeppDoggDeppDogg Posts: 296 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Trying to avoid all the debris on the floor from the Octagon battle on the site about who's the best QB for UGA. I have an opinion and have expressed it. And I do find it nuts but typical that some are calling for an untested Freshman to play because they were highly ranked coming out of H.S. The top three QBs coming out with JT Daniels (and remember, he didn't even play his SR year) were Lawrence, Fields, and Daniels (not necessarily in that order) and JT was the Gatorade NATIONAL Player of the Year and QB of the undisputed best H.S. team in the nation (Bryce Young's school, by the way - where JT still holds every passing record).

    I'll just say this - which is really the point, IMO.

    When Saban pulled his starting QB at the half of the Natty, did he KNOW that Tua would win the game? No. Did he think Tua was the "best" QB on the team? Don't know. But want to know what he said? It's so simple it tells us a whole lot about Kirby Smart at the same time.

    Saban's explanation:

    "Well, I just thought we had to throw the ball in the game, and I thought he could do it better," Saban said of Tagovailoa. "And he did."

    There's the point, folks. What he was doing wasn't working so he changed it. Kirby was on the other sideline, but obviously wasn't paying attention.

  • stonestone Posts: 399 ✭✭✭ Junior

    Apparently you were correct to worry if Beck does in fact transfer which I agree with you that he will.

    one thing for sure there are few programs that have more drama surrounding their quarterback room than the dawgs.

  • stonestone Posts: 399 ✭✭✭ Junior

    I am anticipating getting a lot of down votes on this. When UGA scored right before the half I told my friend it was a big mistake. Had it remained a one possession game, a game that the dawgs were in complete control of at that time,Saban would have stayed with hurts who was totally ineffective against that defense. He probably would sent Tua in once Bama was down 2 scores but that more than likely would have been late in the third quarter.

    what Saban did know was Bama had to pass the ball to win and with exception of the quarterback had th tools to do it. Tua provided the spark to fire up Bama

    kirby found himself facing the same set of circumstances

  • stonestone Posts: 399 ✭✭✭ Junior

    There is a much larger question that needs to be addressed than whether it’s Daniels or Bennett. That question is what is Kirby’s offensive philosophy. To be honest with you I don’t know.

    It in many ways appears to be what Saban was doing before Hurts, that being to have a strong defense and a controlling rushing game and play action passing attack. When Hurts showed up along with Kiffin Saban started the long process of moving from a strong defense to an explosive offense. In other words his offensive philosophy evolved. It became a vertical passing attack.

    you can look ar the last several Bama teams and see this. The defense is just good enough to get some critical stops and that really is all that is needed because your offense is going to turn it into a boat race.

    Kirby needs to own his offense just like owns the defense. He has a strong defensive philosophy. As the HC he needs to have one for the offense.

  • ColumbusDawgColumbusDawg Posts: 207 ✭✭✭ Junior
    edited December 2021

    Let's see. Bennett 2 starts against Bama. Neither was close. Daniels has not had a start against Bama. Daniels has not lost a game at UGA. If Bennett starts and UGA loses to Bama again or Mich.... Look people it is JT's turn. Him and Pickens are a great tandem, have rapport. He will have receivers all over the place too like he has never had. Defenses are not worried about the threat of deep passes over their head with Bennett and that lets them attack in front of them, focus on the run more, focus on the receivers in front of them much more. JT opens up the field for the run game and the deep passes and the rest of the passing game. He has a FASTER RELEASE. If the run is stopped, who you want? If we are losing by 17, who do you want? It is JT's turn. For multiple reasons. End of conversation.

  • BubbaBillBubbaBill Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    So, would you have benched Justin Fields last year against a weaker Bama team than Bennett faced? Ohio State lost 52-24 and Fields was horrible.

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