ATHENS - Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham discussed Georgia's signing class on Wednesday.
The signing class, which is heavy on outside linebackers and defensive ends, which are almost interchangeable positions in the 3-4 system.
“When you look at the quality of players defensively we’re able to bring in right now it’s exciting," Grantham said. "To win the SEC, you’ve gotta be pretty dominant in your front seven, you’ve gotta be stout, and I think we addressed those needs with the linemen. And with the linebackers we signed, the thing of it is they’re all very versatile. The tempo at which colleges play, you need some depth too.”
Grantham called this year’s defensive class “a great complement” to the class it had last year. He returned to that theme several times.
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“When you look at guys like Jonathan Taylor and John Atkins this year, along with Ray Drew and Sterling (Bailey) last year, those kind of guys to me are very rare," Grantham said. "That to me is the biggest difference between the SEC and all the other conferences, is people’s inability to block the front guys. I think the thing that we add is that we’re a little bit more multiple, in that we have some mobile, hybrid, lengthier linebacker-type guys that could be rush guys, could be drop guys. And we just move them around, try to mix them up a little bit.”
On the many edge rushers, Grantham emphasized their versatility and the Bulldogs’ desire to be versatile. He noted that in 14 games this year, he started 11 different lineups.
“You can play with as many as three or four outside linebackers based on the situation," he said. "I think any time you can sign guys that are big, they’ve got length to them, they got some size to them, they’ve got athletic ability, they can play in space. Any time you can get guys like that, we’re gonna find a way to get them on the field.”