I finished watching Georgia Tech defense against BYU again. As expected, there was some good and some bad.
We tried some new faces along the DL in the starting group. At least we are trying to do something at Dieke's DE spot. Gamble actually started there, but really didn't give us much of a lift. I am really not as high on him as some others are. He looks way too light in the pants to play DT and he really didn't get much push or penetration on the outside. I am really not seeing any power.
Kitchen played a fair amount at defensive tackle. He lucked into a couple plays with busted OL blocking assignments, but he generally looks about as effective as Cummings to me, no worse.
The good news is centered around Adam Gotsis. I know he made some plays behind the LOS, and that is great, but what I am happy about is that it wasn't a fluke. Something has started to click with him. He was driving into guys much lower and getting under their pads using what I always felt was his best physical attribute, sturdy legs with some power. He actually had a legit bull rush approach and was getting a ton of push into the backfield even if he didn't make the play. I thought it might have just been a good match-up for him that day, but then I noticed he was getting it done against different people. He actually drew the double teams most of the time in the pass rush as a result, not Attaochu.
I have been dying to see just one of our guys Bull Rush and he is the first this year. Good for him. He still needs a little work against the run, but his pass rush technique has started to click.
Green is our quickest off the ball, just like last year. He gets penetration. I really like him for short yardage, but not much else after that. Kallon didn't play, or if he did, I didn't see him. I had heard he might get some time. Overall, it was another poor day for the DL. They couldn't hold point and got pushed around.
You would think we never see the option. They were running our formation, the diamond, and continually, BOTH our DE and the OLB would crash only to have the QB pull the ball and run to the open corner. C'mon fellas. Assignment football. If one of you is going to crash the handoff, the other has to take the edge.
For me, the LB play was spotty at best. Hunt-Days had a particularly poor day tackling. I think he was tired. He continually approached ball carriers too high and got shucked. If he did make a tackle he was dragging people down getting pulled 4 yards. We were late rotating to take TEs when a LB blitz was called. It just wasn't good. Watts ran some plays down like he always does but he wasn't physical at impact.
Our DBs can cover, but the problem just seems to be that we are terrible running zone. We just continually lose track of people and it has to stop. Once again, to right the ship in the second half, we gave the DL some help, sent some LB blitzes, brought our safeties up, and pressed our CBs closer to the LOS in man coverage. It may be more high risk, but it is our most effective scheme so far. In fact, it is the ONLY thing working.
I just think our DBs are more comfortable covering a guy in man. There is less to keep track of. Both Jemea and Louis are pretty good one on one. Give them some trust and let them go with it.
Give credit to the BYU QB and receiver for the first long TD. I don't know how you can expect better coverage than Young had on the play. There might have been a total of one foot where the ball could have been dropped in, and it was. The receiver made a heck of a catch too.
I have to admit. It kind of hurts when I see our guys running free behind the defense and we can't hit them, while our adversaries are completing balls into tight spaces on the deep throws. Overall, there were too many missed tackles in the secondary and too many guys turned loose. It is hard to critique the secondary fully, because a lot of the action is outside the screen.
IMHO, we weren't great in the second half. We were just helped out by a few BYU drops and blocking assignment busts along the way. I would say, half the improvement in results was them being worse and half us playing better and getting more pressure with numbers.