Georgia covered a significant point spread before the first quarter was over for the second consecutive week.
The No. 2 Bulldogs scored 21 points in the first quarter on Saturday to easily dispatch No. 8 Arkansas, 37-0. And the game was pretty much over at that point.
Georgia scored TDs on its first two drives of the game and prevented Arkansas from getting a first down on either of its first two drives. As Arkansas prepared to punt with the score already 14-0, Georgia's Dan Jackson blocked the punt in the end zone and Zamir White recovered for the touchdown.
That TD put Georgia ahead of the spread. The Bulldogs entered the game as 18.5-point favorites. There was no sweating a Georgia cover the rest of the way either. Arkansas never came close to the end zone and the best drive of the day ended with a missed field goal.
A week ago, Georgia was favored by 34.5 points at Vanderbilt. The Bulldogs scored 35 points in the first quarter on the way to a 62-0 win.
Georgia plays without JT Daniels
Usually a matchup between top-10 teams is impacted significantly by the absence of a starting QB. This game was not.
Georgia QB JT Daniels was unavailable on Saturday after he went back to the locker room in pregame warmups. Daniels has been dealing with a lat injury but practiced all week in anticipation of playing. But he clearly couldn't go in the minutes before the game and Stetson Bennett made his second start of the season.
Bennett had to throw the ball a grand total of 10 times. Georgia clearly realized it could overpower Arkansas up front with its massive offensive line and good running backs. The Bulldogs rushed 56 times for 273 yards.
Arkansas offense couldn't do anything
The Razorbacks were helpless on offense. K.J. Jefferson was 8-of-13 passing for 65 yards and rushed eight times for five yards before he was replaced in the fourth quarter by Malik Hornsby.
Arkansas’ play-calling seemed to reflect a lack of confidence in the offensive line. Georgia’s defensive line is one of the best in the country and swarmed the Hogs at every opportunity. Arkansas ended the game with just 138 total yards and a lot of those came on the final drive.
The Georgia defense has now shut out opponents for over 130 minutes. The last score against Georgia came by South Carolina with 10:55 to go in a 40-13 Georgia win two weeks ago.
That score — a 36-yard TD catch by Josh Vann from Luke Doty — is the only TD the Georgia defense has allowed this season. Opponents have scored just two TDs on the Bulldogs altogether; UAB's lone touchdown in Week 2 was a fourth-quarter pick-six.
The loss is a bad omen for an Arkansas team that started the season 4-0 with wins over Texas and Texas A&M. How much of that start was a mirage? The schedule doesn't let up soon — the Razorbacks' next two games are against Ole Miss and Auburn. It's not impossible that Arkansas will be underdogs in both of those games.
Is this the best Georgia team in years?
It's still early. But this could be the best Georgia team of Kirby Smart's tenure. Yes, even better than the team that lost in overtime to Alabama in the 2017 national title game.
It's not there yet — five games is still too small of a sample size to make definite proclamations — but Georgia is dominant on both the offensive and defensive lines. That dominance has allowed the Bulldogs to control every opponent it's played. Yeah, the offense didn't score a TD against Clemson, but that was a 10-3 game that felt like a two-score game. Clemson had no chance of scoring an offensive TD against that Georgia defense.
While Florida put up a fight against Alabama two weeks ago, Georgia looks like the clear favorite in the SEC East. And a division title potentially sets up a game with No. 1 Alabama in the SEC title game. If both Alabama and Georgia are undefeated heading into the SEC championship, then both are heading to the College Football Playoff. And that game could be another national title game preview.