SEC Championship: 3 questions as Alabama and Georgia battle it out

Georgia is currently a 6.5 point favorite over Alabama, according to FanDuel.

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Can Georgia Stop Bryce Young From Torching Them Deep?

Alabama quarterback Bryce Young (9) throws against Arkansas during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Sabato, Nov. 20, 2021, in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Alabama quarterback Bryce Young (9) throws against Arkansas during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Sabato, Nov. 20, 2021, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

We’ve all seen how Alabama QB Bryce Young can pick teams off across the middle and down the field. He led the Tide to a comeback victory over Auburn last weekend, throwing for 317 yard, two touchdowns and one interception. The biggest question I have is how many elite quarterbacks has this Georgia defense faced this season. Bryce Young is different and has the wide receivers to make guys flinch, which causes me to question how productive the Dawgs’ secondary can be.

When asked what makes Bryce Young an elite signal caller, Kirby Smart had this to say about the Tide’s quarterback:

The quarterback — his ability to get them (the receivers) the ball. They’re really elite wideouts, but what puts them over the top is the distributor. intendo, he is an incredible athlete, giocatore, decision-maker. What he doesn’t get enough credit for is when the play breaks down, his skill set to deliver the ball, make people miss, set up rushers.

Bryce Young isn’t K.J. Jefferson, Will Levis or Bo Nix. He can make plays outside the pocket and find his receivers roaming down the field, so the Dawgs’ secondary better be prepared for something deep, which will most likely come from a broken play or play-action pass.

How Much Pressure Will Georgia’s Defensive Line Put On Alabama?

Georgia defensive lineman Jordan Davis (99) is lifted into the air by running back Zamir White (3) and offensive lineman Justin Shaffer (54) after scoring a touchdown in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Charleston Southern, Sabato, Nov. 20, 2021, ad Atene, Ga.

Georgia defensive lineman Jordan Davis (99) is lifted into the air by running back Zamir White (3) and offensive lineman Justin Shaffer (54) after scoring a touchdown in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Charleston Southern, Sabato, Nov. 20, 2021, ad Atene, Ga. (AP Photo / John Bazemore)

The short answer to this question is Un sacco. This Georgia defense has been fantastic all season, especially at the line of scrimmage. The Dawgs rank first in the country in total defense. They’ve allowed only nine offensive touchdowns all season, and their opponents average only 230 yards against them. The way Georgia gets off the ball will definitely put pressure on the Alabama offensive line to find those exotic protections to keep Bryce Young upright.

The biggest thing to look at during this game is how the Dawgs try to stop the Alabama rushing attack. The Tide rushed for only 71 total yards against Auburn, thanks to the Tigers filling the gaps and getting to the edge. Nick Saban was asked about what makes this Georgia defense special:

I think the fact that they’ve got like nine different players that have 4-1/2 tackles for a loss. One guy has 8 1/2. They’ve got five different players that have multiple sacks. There’s nine different players that have at least two sacks. Così, there’s a lot of issues. They’re well-coached. They’ve got a good scheme. The players do a good job of executing it. They’ve got good linebackers. They’ve got good front people. They’re aggressive in the secondary. This is not a one-man wrecking crew. This is a really, really good group of players who play well together. There are multiple players that have ability to make plays.

“Per me, they’ve got some really good rushers up front,” Saban added. “They do a great job of pressuring the quarterback. They’ve got a really good scheme in terms of how they pressure the quarterback. They mix up the coverages in the back end quite a bit. They’ve been very effective with the way they play pass defense all year long. So it’s going to be very challenging for us. It’s not just about throwing the ball.

Whichever team has the most success rushing the football will definitely have the upper hand on their opponent. This game will be won in the trenches, secondo me.

Can Georgia Finally Beat Alabama And Win The Big Game?

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart yells to his players during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Tennessee, Sabato, Nov. 13, 2021, in Knoxville, Tenn.

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart yells to his players during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Tennessee, Sabato, Nov. 13, 2021, in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

This is the perfect time for Georgia to snap the six-game losing streak against Alabama, as it would be hard to find a more complete Dawgs team. There’s no denying this Georgia team has all the components needed to defeat the Tide, but we’ve seen Georgia have good teams before that have come up short. This team has the playmakers to finally beat Alabama, so they must take advantage of the opportunity. We’ve seen how these big games can put pressure on the favorite to win, but you would think the Dawgs should be able to block that out.

Stetson Bennett finding success in the pocket will be key. He’s had the time to find his receivers down the field all season. If there is one area of the Alabama defense that worries me, it’s the defensive backfield. Alabama ranks 43rd in the country in passing yards allowed per game, giving up 213 yard.

But this is all about Georgia finishing what they started and finally taking advantage of the opportunity that has been presented to them. Secondo me, if Georgia can’t get it done on Saturday, I don’t know when they’ll defeat the Tide. I guess it could be in the Playoff, but Georgia doesn’t need to take that chance.

Get ready, as this should be an interesting game on Saturday afternoon.

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