Can Gurley Be Stopped? Yes, By Only One Team

While everyone is preparing for the game Saturday, I am beachside. My family is taking our vacation this week. Now, I’d prefer to be living, eating and sleeping football 24/7 right now, but being on the Gulf Coast isn’t bad. And don’t worry…we are leaving Friday morning to head home and will get up with the roosters Saturday to head to Athens.

The key to Georgia victory on Saturday is how effective Todd Gurley can be running the football. The key to Georgia having a good season is how effective Todd Gurley can be running the football.

That might be the duh statement of century.

Gurley’s Heisman and NFL draft pub isn’t just empty hype. He is a special player with once in a generation skill. He is awesome. I used to not think a defense could be able to stop a healthy Gurley.

Then, as I was swimming in the ocean today, and I had an epiphany. Not like Larry David when he almost drown, but still I had a clear mind.

There is only one defense in the country that can stop Todd Gurley.

It isn’t Vic Beasley or Clemson. It isn’t Florida’s.

No, it isn’t even the great Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide defense.

The only defense that can stop Todd Gurley is Georgia’s defense.

If our defense screws around and gives up lots of big plays, lots of points, then it will take Gurley out of the game plan.

Take for example the game last year at Auburn. Gurley only had two carries during Georgia’s 3 possessions in the entire third quarter as UGA was trying to mount their comeback. Now, as the game got closer in the 4th Quarter, Gurley did have 6 carries in the 4th.

Against Auburn, Gurley had 15 carries for 79 yards. Gurley only had fewer carries when he was either hurt (like against LSU or Clemson) or when he services really weren’t needed (like Kentucky).

I had that post written, but I then had another thought. My mind is going wild! I’m getting a headache doing all this thinking.

Gurley showed last year he can be a receiving threat. The Auburn game showed how effective Gurley can be as a receiving option. Because it was necessary to find your best player a way to get the ball, against Auburn Gurley had 10 catches for 77 yards. The next week against Kentucky, he had 5 catches for 90 yards, 4/36 against Tech, and 7/97 against Nebraska.

The only way that Clemson is able to stop a healthy Gurley is take him out of the game. Even then, as we saw last season, he is still a threat catching the ball.

So, is it really possible to take him out of the game? Can he really be stopped?

I still say yes. As great as a weapon as Gurley can be in the passing game, offense works better when a team throws when they want to. I still think a successful Georgia offense is one with Gurley getting somewhere around 20 carries per game. That probably means we are doing what we want to be doing.

The key to the Clemson game, and the rest of the season for that matter, simply falls on if the Georgia Defense will take Gurley out of the game. If Georgia is having to play catch up or from behind all the time, then Gurley won’t be near as effective.

I personally think the defense will be pretty good this season. So if Gurley can stay healthy, watch out.


6 Responses to “Can Gurley Be Stopped? Yes, By Only One Team”

  1. 1 RW August 26, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    1. Gurley did not play against Tenn/Mizzou/Vandy. We beat Tenn by a field goal and lost the other 2 games. Clearly, last year when Gurley didn’t play, there wasn’t a healthy replacement and the offense struggled. So his own health could derail the team. I wonder if Michel and Chubb, and the rest of the backs would be a better replacement if that happened again?
    2. We threw the ball too much in 2 losses, the losses at Auburn (49 passes) and Mizzou(45 passes), took us out of our balance.
    3. Gurley was a non-factor in the Bowl game, he got 4 yards a carry and scored 0 rushing td’s. So he can be stopped with a good run defensive scheme.
    4. We only averaged 3 ypc against Vandy, and 2.2 against Nebraska, both losses.
    5. You will never win the SEC without finishing in the top 3 in rushing.
    6. Have to average above 5 ypc to win the SEC.

  2. 2 HamDawg11 August 26, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    Wow, I think you’re dead on with your assessment! I never really thought if it that way, but you’re right. If we have to play come from behind, it probably won’t be good.

  3. 3 RW August 26, 2014 at 12:28 pm


    I do not think the defense will stop Gurley, it might be an excuse for losing, but it’s really on the offense to outscore the other team.

    Take Auburn, their defense gives up 41 to Texas A/M, 38 to Georgia, and 42 to Mizzou, and the go 3-0 and win all 3 games.

    Against ranked teams, the defensive scoring at Auburn and Georgia was within 1 point, but Auburn won their first 13 games.

    It’s on the offense to adjust, and have that Auburn mentality, and just outscore the other team.

    • 4 BMacDawg87 August 26, 2014 at 8:58 pm

      Sure this philosophy may run rampant in the Pac 12, BIGs and ACC but how many natty’s have they won in the last 8 years? DEFENSE wins championships.

      And please do not ever use Auuuubuuurn as a measuring stick for anything but a pile of manure ever again. Go root for Auburn if you love their “mentality” so much.

      • 5 RW August 27, 2014 at 1:00 am

        Auburn’s d was ranked 8th & pth in def scoring in 2010 & 2013, both times they got to the National Championship.

        It worked 50% of the time the last 4 years so well it got 2 teams to the National Championship.

        Sorry to embarrass you rookie.

  4. 6 RW August 27, 2014 at 1:03 am

    The UGA defense has been closer to Auburn’s model, than Bama’s.

    In other words, win with offense.

    Both work.

    But the Bama plan is unrealistic for the UGA defense who never wins with defense in the last 5 years, but the offense is among the elite..

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