Oregon football: Defense has confidence traveling to face Georgia

Oregon defensive back Bennett Williams works out with the Ducks Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2022, in Eugene, Ore.
Oregon defensive back Bennett Williams works out with the Ducks Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2022, in Eugene, Ore. /

Oregon football is confident on the defensive side of the ball facing a top-five team in Georgia to start the 2022 season on the road. Defensive back Bennett Williams has seen team growth on and off the field.

Williams got his season off to a stellar start in 2021 before an injury ended the year for him. Now back with the team and ready to go against Georgia, he spoke about how this defense has gelled.

"“A lot of different areas. The growth in terms of connection happened a lot in the offseason and accelerated into camp. (We’re) moving fast and playing fast.”"

Williams is entering his senior season with the Ducks and has seen his fair share of coaching changes during his time in Eugene, along with several of his teammates.

Dan Lanning has brought with him a unique style of defense where players fit on more than one place on the field, and that mindset has been embraced by Williams.

"“I’ve been playing a lot of positions. Rotating a lot this week and playing where coach wants me to play.”"

This philosophy has also been reflected in speaking with defensive coordinator Tosh Lupoi from a few weeks ago.

Not only does playing in multiple spots help you as a college player, but at the next level it will show versatility and athleticism. Teams at the next level may also look to grow a talent in a different position of it has been played and played well. Good on the coaching staff to take this approach and for the team to embrace it.

The Georgia Bulldogs bring unique challenges across the board, and the point spread is not in the Ducks favor on Saturday. Williams said the team is not playing to the Georgia hype.

"“I feel like we have the guys and the scheme that can work into our gameplan. As a team I don’t believe we’re underdogs. With the talent we have, it will show.”"

Head coach Dan Lanning has not revealed who the starting quarterback will be, but we have a general idea. I expect that Bennett Williams will reclaim the role of return man as he did last season with success prior to being injured. In his comments about the road trip, he laid out his gameplan thoughts.

"“It’s a big one. Coach returning…it’s the first game. We’ve gotta get a feel as a team for the rest of the season for road trips. It’s not the occasion. We need to prep ourselves like it’s a business trip and take care of business.”"

Oregon and Georgia meet in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff game on Saturday. Gametime is set for 12:30 pm Pacific Time on ABC.

All quotes were obtained during media availability on Monday, August 30th.

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