The 2020 Georgia Bulldogs were nationally a top defensive unit. Will this translate into 2021?
2020 Georgia Bulldogs SEC Defensive Rankings
- 2nd in yards per game (321)
- 2nd in points per game (20)
- 6th in passing yards per game (248.7)
- 1st in rushing yards per game (72.3)
To see how good the Georgia Bulldogs defense was in 2020, look at ESPN’s Bill Connelly.
Connelly has a metric call SP+. While it is not a new metric, it is gaining popularity and college football analysts look to it. His explanation of the system is “it’s a tempo- and opponent-adjusted measure of college football efficiency.”
By the way, those yards allowed per game were first in the nation. The second-place Texas A&M Aggies, another team Missouri faces this season, allowed 92 yards per game. That is nearly a 20-yard difference between first and second. That is also the least rushing yards per game allowed since 2016, when Alabama allowed 63.9 yards.
So yeah, the Bulldogs defense is pretty good.
The stout defense starts at the front line, led by senior nose tackle Jordan Davis. While it is rare for the best defensive player to be a nose tackle, Davis has a case. A 2018 freshman All-American, he is a 2021 preseason first-team All-SEC selection.
While the linebacker and secondary corps lost starters to the NFL Draft and graduation, Georgia’s top-tier recruiting figures to aid the “next man up” mentality. Head coach Kirby Smart and defensive coordinator Dan Lanning have had the nation’s top SP+ rated defense in 2019 and 2020. That does not look to change in 2021.