Georgia football instant observations after commanding win over Tennessee

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Georgia defensive back Derion Kendrick (11) during the Bulldogs' game with Tennessee in Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn., on Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021. (Photo by Tony Walsh)
Tony Walsh

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Georgia got hit in the mouth by Tennessee. The Volunteers came down and scored on the opening drive, giving Georgia its first seven-point deficit of the season. Tennessee held a 10-7 lead after the first quarter.

But the Bulldogs had a plan. They kept chopping on the road against Tennessee in a hostile Neyland Stadium. And the Volunteers couldn’t hold. The Bulldogs reeled off 34 straight points, as the defense showed why it is the unquestioned best unit in the country.

Recap: Georgia football bests Tennessee

Channing Tindall wrapped up a career-best 3.0 sacks, James Cook found the endzone three times and the Bulldogs romped to a 41-17 win over the Volunteers. It moves the Bulldogs to 10-0 on the season and completes an 8-0 record against SEC foes.

Georgia finished with 6.0 sacks on the day and held Tennessee’s offense to 17 points. It was actually the most points the Georgia defense gave up all season. And yet the Volunteers were still 21 points over their average.

Offensively, the Bulldogs finished with 487 yards on the day and scored 34 straight points during the game.

James Cooks Tennessee

It was pretty evident Cook was not just the best player on Georgia’s offense today, but of anyone who suited up on Saturday the field.

Cook started the scoring for Georgia on Saturday with a 39-yard touchdown in the first quarter. He found the endzone once again, as he hit a double move to haul in a 23-yard catch from Stetson Bennett. That pass put Georgia up 24-10 going into halftime and gave the Bulldogs some clear breathing room.

Bennett’s legs were a real difference-maker on Saturday. Taking away sack yardage, Bennett ran for 56 yards on 6 carries, picking up multiple first downs with his legs. That is one clear difference between what Bennett brings to the offense and what Daniels could potentially bring.

Daniels made the trip and was by all accounts able to play in the game. Yet he didn’t play at all against Tennessee. Bennett pretty clearly seems entrenched as the starting quarterback for the Bulldogs after this win.

Injury news and notes

Dominick Blaylock and Jamaree Salyer both made the trip for Georgia but neither played. During the game, Georgia replaced Warren Ericson at right guard with Xavier Truss.

As mentioned above, moving Chris Smith to star and Jackson at safety proved to help the Georgia defense. The move put Brini on the bench.

With no Adam Anderson, Robert Beal once again saw an uptick in snaps. Beal picked up a sack in the win. Nolan Smith did leave the game late with some kind of arm injury.

Jordan Davis and Beal all briefly went down with injuries during the game but were able to return to action. CBS reported that Jalen Carter left the game with a stomach bug, something a number of Georgia players were dealing with on Saturday. Devonte Wyatt also left the game late with an injury as well.

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