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3rd Down Conversion Improvement?


Jan 29, 2013
I think one of our Achilles heel has been 3rd down conversion both on defense and offense. I used to cringe when D'onofrio's defense was on the field on 3rd down because I thought we had a crapshoot of a chance at best to get off the field. Looking at the stats for last year it looks like we did improve but we're not at the elite level yet. Is this something that has been an emphasis? I know every team works on 3rd down plays but it seems like if we make a large improvement on this down we could make that jump to playoff contender.

3rd Down Defense Conversion

2012: Ranked 83 42.11%
2013: Ranked 90 42.42%
2014: Ranked 72 40.31%
2015: Ranked 67 39.26%
2016: Ranked 53 38.57%

(Top 25 stats are around 35% while Top 10 stats are in the less than 30% range)

3rd Down Offense Conversion

2012: Ranked 68 39.41%
2013: Ranked 96 35.00%
2014: Ranked 95 36.81%
2015: Ranked 107 34.97%
2016: Ranked 99 36.26%

(Top 25 stats are around 45% while Top 10 stats are around the 50% range)


Oct 21, 2011
Good thread. Thank you.


The evolution of our LBs will really help on the defensive side. Also, I think our collective Safety position instincts will help. There were some gaping holes between LBs and Safeties last year and our guys either didn't get sufficient depth (LB) or were a tick slow in reaction (Carter). Additionally, Diaz still relied on blitzes heavily last year. I think Joe Jackson, Mcintosh and crew help him become even more flexible with his looks this year.

We saw a glimpse of that in the bowl game against a previously decent enough offense. Our defense was at 35.2% for the game, which had that been our season percentage, would have placed us closer to the Top 25.


This is a Richt and Kaaya combination. Firstly, Richt will likely get much cleaner this upcoming season. If the bowl game was any indication, he became quicker at accepting pass to open up the run. If the last stretch of the season was any indication, he accepted his personnel limitations and adjusted to quicker drops. Kaaya also played a role in our 3rd down issues. The inability to evade a blitz effectively or extend plays is what 3rd down offense is all about. Regardless of our QB choice, in simply those aspects (movement in and out of the pocket), we will improve. We were fairly terrible last year, so a move to the Top 50 would be my guess.