Oregon football has a reputation for explosive, high-scoring offenses, so how did things get so bad against Georgia in the 2022 opener?
It was not the kind of game that Dan Lanning wanted for his first as head football coach at Oregon, but the Ducks could not get going on offense and played poor defense in a 49-3 loss to Georgia.
Oregon football lost the coin toss to open the game, and Georgia deferred. Oregon starting quarterback Bo Nix looked comfortable on the Ducks opening drive using a mix of his legs and some pass plays to get to midfield where the first drive stalled out forcing a punt.
That was probably the best overall drive of the game for the Ducks. From that point on, it was all Georgia.
The Ducks’ second drive ended with a Bo Nix interception on a throw deep downfield to Seven McGee on a circus pick by Georgia defensive back Malaki Starks. The Bulldogs then rolled 92 yards down the field and were up 14-0 before the first quarter was even over.
The second quarter did not bode much better for the Ducks. Bo Nix started to find some offensive momentum but then threw a second interception, leading to a 21-point deficit for the Ducks.
Oregon football isn’t the offensive beast it once was
It was clear this is not an offense built for big comebacks. Gone are the days of explosive pass plays and running backs breaking of 30-plus yard runs, or at least it was gone against the stout Bulldogs’ defense.
The well-oiled machine that was the Bulldogs on both sides of the ball was just too much for the Ducks to deal with. Bo Nix was under duress all day, and the only time Oregon was able to move the ball was by attacking the edges of the Georgia defense, but even that got shut down during the second half of the game.
The question becomes, do Lanning and his staff write this off as an early-season jitters performance against a vastly superior team, or did Bo Nix play poorly enough that a change might be considered at quarterback?
Hopefully, the offense can gain some confidence and get into some rhythm against Eastern Washington.
Oregon returns to Eugene and will host Eastern Washington next week. Kickoff on Saturday, September 10th is set for 5:30 pm Pacific Time. The game will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network.
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