Florida Week: Hale's Three Keys

JACKSONVILLE - David Hale's look at Georgia's game with Florida.

Sustain drives. Georgia's best defense may be a good offense. If the Bulldogs' offense can convert third downs, run the ball successfully and control the clock, Tim Tebow and company will be relegated to the sideline, which is exactly where the Bulldogs want them. More importantly, sustained scoring drives for Georgia will create more need for Tebow to throw the ball on offense, and anything the Bulldogs can do to make the Gators' multifaceted attack one-dimensional is a plus.

Make tackles. The Bulldogs' defense allowed LSU to turn too many short gains into big plays with poor tackling in the second half. Florida's speed demons like Percy Harvin and Chris Rainey are threats to break a big one any time they get into space, so Georgia's defenders need to focus on bringing them down on first contact. The best way to negate Florida's speed, linebacker Rennie Curran said, is to take good angles to the ball and make sure they bring down the runner with the first hit.

Win on special teams. Last week, Florida blocked two punts against Kentucky that led to scores. Meanwhile, the Gators' dangerous return man Brandon James has returned two punts this season for touchdowns. In all, Florida ranks fifth in the nation, averaging more than 20 yards per return. It will be up to Bulldogs punter Brian Mimbs to get his punts off before Florida gets pressure, then have enough hang time that Georgia can make the tackle before James breaks a big run.


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