They aren’t as elite on defense as they were last year, but the Georgia Bulldogs still have a ton of talent. Kirby Smart has them on the same level as the Alabama Crimson Tide, where they just reload, so Tennessee football will still have its hans full between the hedges Saturday as they try to pull off another upset.
What really stands out about Georgia, though, is the uniqueness of their weapons on offense. They are highly efficient on that side of the ball too despite running a style completely opposite to the Vols. Our analysis of the key players for Georgia at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga., involve many of those weapons.
As we get set to break down the players Josh Heupel and the Vols must watch out for the most Saturday, we’ll name people who just missed the list. After all, this team has lots of talent. Here are the five Georgia players most important for Tennessee football to keep an eye on.
The UGA Dawgs are loaded with weapons that the Tennessee football Volunteers will have to watch out for.
5’11” 195 pounds
They aren’t as deep at cornerback this year, but Georgia is elite at safety. Christopher Smith and Malaki Starks have both been superstars back there, and Starks deserves a shoutout before we go any further. Starting at free safety, he has two interceptions, five pass deflections and 30 tackles, 19 of which were solo.
However, Smith slightly gets the edge. The strong safety also has two interceptions, and he has three pass deflections. What boosts him is how much of a force he can be in the run game too, as he has four tackles for a loss, a sack, a fumble recovery and 28 tackles, 20 of which were solo.
Obviously, Tennessee football relies on big plays in the passing game to score more than almost any other team. To do that, though, they’ll have to account for these guys. They use the run game a lot to open up those big plays, and in that scenario, they’ll still have to watch out for Smith, making him a huge part of this game.