Vandy Week: Tuesday's Rundown

ATHENS - Georgia hit the field on Tuesday for its second day of preparation for Vanderbilt.

1. For all those who've been wondering about Jonathon Rumph, here's the latest as of Tuesday. He's practicing and expected to play on Saturday at Vanderbilt. However, he's got a long way to go before he's on the same level as his fellow Bulldog receivers. He's definitely got the talent, but the junior transfer from Holmes Community College has yet to see a live SEC defense. Mark Richt spoke about Rumph during his Tuesday press conference, and while he didn't seem concerned, he did make it clear where Rumph currently stands in Georgia's offensive scheme.

"I don't think there's much doubt he'll play, but he's not really played for us yet," Richt said. "By the end of the week, we'll see how comfortable he is and how comfortable we are with what he knows and if we think he can execute."

While he hasn't played for Georgia yet, Rumph did have the advantage of practicing with the Dawgs in the spring. He's been around the playbook as well as the offense so he's familiar in that aspect. He's just got to get used to the game speed.

"As a junior college guy, he's still young with us, so we're just not sure how many plays he'll play, but we want to get him going, that's for sure," Richt said. "We need him to come through."

2. Has the defense struggled? Yes it has. However, the latest NFL Draft left a lot of holes in Georgia's defense. Richt hasn't announced any reason for panic, though.

"Everyone is frustrated. Everyone takes pride in what they do, but we have to keep believing in each other," Richt said. "We have to keep banging away. We can't lose any kind of hope or faith, and there's enough progress going on that I still feel very comfortable that we're moving in the right direction with a lot of pups. There are a lot of good things happening."

While there have been holes in the defense this season, a lack of experience can no longer be considered a valid excuse for the Dawgs. Yes, they're young, but they've played plenty of games.

"We're at game seven now, so we've played enough games to where some of these guys that were inexperienced when they got started aren't anymore," Richt said. "They have half a season under their belt, so we've got to keep making plays."

3. Who's the man at running back if Todd Gurley can't go for another week? Well, there are two; Brendan Douglas and J.J. Green. Both have their own unique stories of how they made it to the top running back spots. For Douglas, he almost wasn't a Dawg. For Green, he almost wasn't a running back. However, Richt said they wanted Douglas to be at Georgia all along.

"You only have so many scholarships at each position, and we were slow to offer him. He decided to come, and we're thankful he did," Richt said. "It was never an issue if we thought he was good enough, but it was just whether or not we had enough space."

Luckily, Georgia did have enough space, and it's worked in its favor in this situation. Georgia has needed all the offensive help it could get during a situation with so many injuries to key starters. For Green, he was an athlete that would either sign as a receiver or a cornerback. Now he's neither of those.

"He's a guy where we weren't really sure what position he would play when we signed him," Richt said. "Of the two positions that we thought, one was corner and one was receiver, so we weren't even thinking tailback. Last spring we were a little bit short on numbers at tailback and thought he had the best shot at filling in and helping us there, and he's kind of taken off with it."

4. Along with turnovers, Richt says some of his defenders are seeking out more sacks. One of those players in particular is Jordan Jenkins. Jenkins has currently accounted for just one sack on the season. That doesn't mean he hasn't helped on a few others, though. He's attacking the run and the pass well.

"With Jordan, I think it's easy to say that if a guy doesn't have 'X' amount of sacks that he's not having a good year at the end position, but I think he's playing very physical against the run," Richt said. "I think he's pressuring the quarterback. He's getting some edge pressure and forcing guys in the pocket."

5. Gurley wasn't on the field during practice today. His recovery is a work in progress. Richt didn't predict Gurley would practice today anyway. He's not running plays with the scout team, but he is running somewhere. His next step is changing directions and putting a little more pressure on that ankle. He could be back in a few days, but then again he could not. That remains to be seen.


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