Sep 27, 2014; Athens, GA, USA; Georgia Bulldogs linebacker Lorenzo Carter (7) hits Tennessee Volunteers quarterback Nathan Peterman (12) as he releases the ball during the second half at Sanford Stadium. Georgia defeated Tennessee 35-32. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Every college defense benefits from versatility among its players. And for Pruitt’s defense it is particularly important. Playing one position well isn’t good enough and Pruitt cites an example for Connor Riley of Onlineathens.com.
The good thing about Leonard is he can make everybody else right
“Sometimes your second team strong safety is better than your second team free safety. So when you’re starting free safety gets hurt, it’s not real smart to put in the worse player.”
Georgia will create diversity with some great talents in 2015. Leonard Floyd stepped away from outside linebacker during last year’s Auburn game to play the star position. Georgia held Auburn to seven points in the blowout victory. Expect Floyd to play all over the field this season, including outside linebacker, inside linebacker and the star position.
“We’re very fortunate to have a guy who has the ability to do multiple things like that,” Pruitt told Riley. “The good thing about Leonard is he can make everybody else right. And until we can figure out the other pieces of the puzzle, he will play all three.”
Combing a senior’s strength and wisdom with well honed defensive back skills, Damian Swann excelled at the star position in 2014.
Pruit elaborated for Riley. “We teach things about concepts, so pretty much any guy that plays in our secondary can play the star position. We’ve got corners who can play the star, we got safeties who can play the star. In the spring, when we went with the threes I made Malkom Parrish play the star, I made Aaron Davis play the star, Quincy Mauger play it and Dom Sanders.”
Now in year two, expect more variations not only from Floyd and from the star position, but from many other players and many other positions.
Next: Year Two