Georgia Team News

Georgia defense dominant early and ‘can get a lot better’ in 2017

Lorenzo Carter
Matt Cashore/USA TODAY Sports

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – During Georgia’s 20-19 win at Notre Dame on Saturday night, the Bulldogs defense allowed only 266 yards of total offense. It even helped seal the victory in the end with one particular play.

But it expects more and believes there’s room for it to get there.

“I feel like we can get a lot better,” junior linebacker Roquan Smith said. “We still made a lot of mistakes. That’s an awesome team we just beat and we need to come in on Monday to actually correct a lot of those things. I feel like we can only go up from there.”

As a unit, Georgia allowed only one offensive touchdown, which came on a short field after a fumbled handoff between Bulldogs quarterback Jake Fromm and running back Nick Chubb. The Bulldogs also held Notre Dame to just 3 of 17 on third down conversions.

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Smith was especially proud of his unit’s red zone defense – a point of weakness for the unit last season – which forced either in or just outside the area.

“You may get down there (into the red zone), but you’re not going to get in,” Smith said. “That was the main focus this spring, summer and fall camp. We needed to get better as a red zone defense and hold them to field goals.”

In its season-opening 49-16 win over Temple, Notre Dame had 606 yards of total offense.

Georgia senior outside linebacker Lorenzo Carter led the way for the Bulldogs with seven tackles, one sack and two fumble recoveries – the latter of which allowed them to run out the clock with just over a minute remaining.

Carter opted to return to Georgia for a final season when the NFL was an option for the former blue-chip recruit.

“It’s just all the work that we put in over the summer and in fall camp,” Carter said. “This is just the piece of the pie. We put in so much before we got here, that this is the fun part.”

For his efforts in the win over Notre Dame, Carter was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week.

RELATED: Georgia LB Lorenzo Carter is our SEC player of the week

(You can follow Dan Mathews on Twitter @DanMathewsATL)

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