Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Going Deep Without Depth

The spurned by the state’s top wideout talk has slipped to a dull roar. Thankfully. And while it is now perfectly clear that we’d much rather have Baccari Rambo than one Da’Rick Rogers, the reality must still be faced squarely in the mirror.

Who’s lining up with AJ this fall?

Sure, many writers will spill ink over the QB race to succeed Joe Cox. But really, this is Aaron Murray’s to lose. And of course we already know who runs this state. So the other offensive skill position needs to be addressed. It’d be nice for one of these guys to step up in what should be AJs final season. We lose Michael Moore who produced a modest 25 catches for 249 yards in ‘09, but was second on the team with 5 TDs. However, we get back Kris Durham who is a natural fit with his size in the slot position that Moore often occupied. 

Here’s a look at the returning names along with their ‘09 numbers:
AJ Green
Tavarres King
Israel Troupe
Rantavious Wooten
Marlon Brown
Orson Charles
Aron White
Arthur Lynch

With all due respect to Tavarres King who had some big grabs last season, the numbers really drop off after #8. Troupe has had moments of brilliance that hiccup within lags of non-playing time. Wooten’s skillset may be unquestioned, but his size will limit his opportunities down close to the goalline.

And while many fans will focus their attention on the broad shoulders of Marlon Brown, the answer may also be found at the TE position. As Paschall wrote, Georgia’s tight ends are poised to complement a receiving corps that even Coach Richt admits is not as deep as he would like.

Depth is definitely an issue at receiver. I would say we don’t have, at this moment, a good number that I feel comfortable having. During the season, you’re probably going to play around six or seven, and that’s what we have right now, so everybody’s going to get their share.

From reading that quote it might be easy to surmise that Logan Gray will be counted on to provide some extra depth. Yet truly, it’s unlikely at this point that even Coach Ball knows how well the athletic quarterback will fill into the role of a pass catching playmaker. So it’s clear that someone will need to step up. A dependable deep threat and athletic ball hog needs to line up on the field opposite AJ Green for a reasonable amount of fear to strike the hearts of SEC secondaries. Preferably two deep threats and ball hogs. Maybe three...I'm greedy.

I would say at this point, #7 may be the only other answer we feel completely comfortable in giving. But I bet by summer’s end we have another. What say you?


MikeInValdosta said...

I think we are all going to be pleasantly surprised by these receivers' production.

#7 & #8 are gong to be getting a lot of attention, as will the running game. I believe TK and Troupe will both have break out years.

To take it a step farther, Aaron Murray is gonig to have the best season for a frosh QB since Zeier!

That's high cotton, brother!

Wookie said...

Da'Rick (pronounced Day-Rick) is dead to me.

Can we please substitute the d for a g?

Ga'Rick is so much more fitting.


brad said...

Would love to see a mix of WR's, TE's and running backs catching passes.

BulldogBry said...

Troupe had a TD when AJ first went out with his shoulder injury (remember Cox didn't know who he was throwing to?) I think it was the Auburn game.

Cojones said...

With the poor memories we all possess it's no wonder we only see gloom and doom. It seems like only yesterday (while in fact it was during last year's recruiting) that we were applauding the efforts of Murray to get his teammate, Orson Charles, to come to UGA in order to continue what they had together in winning championships. If Murray is to be our QB then why can't fans assume that hookup opposite EJ? It's a natural that we really itched to see last year. Now with the possibility here,why are we gnashing our teeth and preaching "Woe is us!"? Good God, fellow Dawgs! You all seem to have the memory of old farts. And that's just the beginning. Great targets in order are : EJ, Orson, Marlon, Rantavious, Tavarres, Kris with Aron, Israel and Arthur all viable and not-consistently-prone-to-drop-the-ball targets. What a lineup! Some of you had better review old film and reckonmember that Kris caught low to the ground passes when we needed it. Some of you can't recognize the amazing assortment of targets that are there. Throw in "Bullet" Williams for fun and a sure-handed "Biletnikoff" Logan Gray from time to time and we are blessed with many to catch the ball. Do you think Richt is ever going to be "comfortable" with all the talent he wants his QB's to throw to? No, he will not be. On this issue he sounds like Vince before any game,"Gosh, with all that power that the other teams have we will be lucky to win one game".. You are taking the worry worm too far by putting so much store in a coach's normal worry statement. Can't any of you remember these receivers showing up when we really needed them last year? Every one of them did. More of the same this year and with depth at QB to boot.

And we haven't even mentioned throwing to the tailbacks and Muntz! Cheez! This offense is stacked and if we could stop sucking our thumbs over last year we should be dreaming what can be on D! and Special Teams with our speed talent coached up!

You guys have to stop smokin that cheap stuff. And get the hell off the CRANK!

Bernie said...

Cojones uh...I'm gonna assume by EJ you mean AJ. As for the woe is us discourse that you refer to, I'm just not sure what you're referring to. I applaud and echo your enthusiasm and agree as to the talent that we have.

However, I also share CMRs concern that we didn't bring in another receiver as we had tried.

ucheedawg said...

I personally have high hopes for King and Wooten. Wooten gives us the "big play" capability and King showed a lot of promise last year.

Something I've thought on recently-Since CMR has come to Athens, we really haven't been loaded at the WR position, which is very opposite of what we all thought would happen when he was hired. He came in with a "high flying" mentality, but we always seem to be limited by the number of recievers on roster. I think this group has a chance to be one of the best corps we've had, even though we are slim. Unfortunately, one key injury and we're hit hard. Glad to have Durham back though, he should be a big time possession reciever.

Bernie said...

Good point ucheedawg. And it reminds me of something I meant to include. It's always important to remember with CMR and his staff that, just as with our tailbacks, a receiver isn't going to see the field if he doesn't block, and block well. I tend to think that was a lot of the reason why Brown only cracked the rotation a handful of times.

So as excited as we are to see Durham back, you can bet the coaches are even more pleased.

MikeInValdosta said...

We have also experienced more than our fair share of "misses" with WR recruits.

That may very well be due to the blocking aspect.

I thought Kenneth Harris was going to be a stud, and several others that just did not pan out.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget we get Kris Durham back. He's no AJ, but he is reliable. We just have to hope Wooten & King continue to develop and Brown lives up to at least some of the hype. I'm not concerned with WR. The keys to 2010 will be 1) if we can get a QB that doesn't throw it to the other team; 2) young DL step up and 3) the learning curve on D is not too steep. If these three happen we can contend in the East. If they don't, we'll be battling to stay out of Shreveport again.

Corbindawg said...

Hopefully we won't be throwing the ball much next year anyway.

Bernie said...

@ Mike Demeiko Goodman could outrun a gazelle, but couldn't throw a block party.

@ Anon I didn't forget Durham. He's mentioned in post and comments. He's a key part of our success through the air and on the ground in '10 I believe.

@Corbindawg The King/Ealey Connector will set us free!!