3 takeaways from No. 5 Georgia's win over No. 3 Clemson
The Bulldogs turned in a punishing performance on defense, keeping the Tigers out of the end zone in a 10-3 win under the lights.
Here are three quick takeaways from the biggest game of Week 1.
A different world for Clemson's offense
The biggest question entering the season for Clemson was how the six-time defending ACC champions would adjust to life without the star duo of Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne. It became immediately apparent it would be much harder with those two now plying their trade for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Clemson entered play with the nation's longest active first-half scoring streak, putting up points in the opening frame in 143 straight games. That came to a crashing halt as quarterback DJ Uiagalelei was under duress from Georgia's talented front seven on virtually every play. The Tigers went into halftime with just 90 total yards of offense, and only one of those came on the ground.
Things didn't get much better in the second half for Clemson, with Uiagalelei once again running for his life and no semblance of a rushing attack. The big Californian flashed signs of his ability last year when Lawrence was sidelined, but it could be a season of growing pains for the sophomore if his teammates don't give him solid protection or a strong running game.
Georgia's defense is downright scary
It's safe to say every offensive coordinator in the country should be scared of Georgia.
The Bulldogs' defense returned just four starters from last season, but you'd never know it by the performance they put forth versus the Tigers. Kirby Smart's defense has been among the nation's best since taking over in Athens, but the early returns on this year's outfit might even exceed those expectations.
Georgia sacked Uiagalelei seven times on Saturday - the most sacks a Dabo Swinney-led team has allowed at Clemson. The Tigers haven't been shut out in 241 games, but the Bulldogs allowing a single field goal is one of the most impressive performances in recent memory.
With no ranked opponents on the schedule until Florida at the end of October, Smart's defense could put up some historically great numbers in the first two months of the season.
Georgia should run the table
The Bulldogs certainly have questions to address on offense, but they stand a strong chance at running the table in the regular season following Saturday's win.
The annual rivalry game with Florida awaits at the end of October, but that's currently the only game on the schedule that features a ranked opponent. The Bulldogs avoid Alabama, LSU, and Texas A&M in the crossover contests, with the SEC West instead squaring up against Arkansas and Auburn.
Outside of a trip to Auburn in October, Georgia doesn't have to travel to face a team with a winning record last season.
A dominant defense, a friendly schedule, and plenty of time to work on the offensive production should add up to an SEC title game berth for the Bulldogs at the start of December.