Select Page

All cylinders firing for Chad Kelly, Ole Miss offense as Rebels roll over Georgia

All cylinders firing for Chad Kelly, Ole Miss offense as Rebels roll over Georgia

OXFORD, Miss. – Quarterback Chad Kelly was eager to get back on the field Saturday against No. 11 Georgia, wanting to redeem himself from early season struggles. The senior signal-caller did that and more, dismantling Georgia’s defense with his arm and his feet, but he had plenty of help from an Ole Miss offense that was firing on all cylinders.

Kelly’s offensive line did an excellent job of protecting him, and his receivers got open just about every time the Buffalo, New York native threw the football in the team’s 45-14 win at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. When the Bulldogs’ defense was closing in, Kelly took what they gave him—which happened to be some open lanes through which to run.

Chad Kelly scored two TDs with his arm and one with his feet. (Photo credit: Petre Thomas, Ole Miss Athletics)

Chad Kelly scored two TDs with his arm and one with his feet. (Photo credit: Petre Thomas, Ole Miss Athletics)

Kelly ran for 53 yards and one touchdown on four carries. He also completed 18-of-24 passes for 282 yards and two TD’s. The chemistry between Kelly and tight end Evan Engram continues to get stronger and stronger with each Saturday’s game. But most importantly, Kelly didn’t get hit a lot, nor did he throw any interceptions.

It was vital for the Rebels’ offensive line to do a better job of protecting its senior quarterback this week so he could avoid suffering a major injury off a hard tackle. But as far as Kelly was concerned, it was more important for him to take care of the football, since he felt he didn’t do so in the team’s two losses this season.

“I was just a lot more calm,” said Kelly, who moved past Jevan Snead (52) into fourth place with 53 career TDs responsible for.

I knew I had to go out there and execute the game plan and just take care of the football, and that’s what I was able to do. My offensive line did a great job today, they protected me. Those guys did a great job, the receivers got open and the running backs ran hard and coaches made greats calls. My job was just to get the guys in the end zone and we did that. I wanted this one bad and it showed.

Ole Miss QB Chad Kelly

What was also evident was the Rebels’ determination to keep their lead. No. 21 Ole Miss (2-2, 1-1 Southeastern Conference) didn’t play conservatively as it did last week in a loss to Alabama. Against Georgia, the Rebels went for the knockout punch, making it clear they weren’t going to drop another 20-point lead; the best way to do that was to keep scoring.

DaMarkus Lodge caught 2 passes for 72 yards and 1 TD vs. Georgia. (Photo credit: Petre Thomas, Ole Miss Athletics)

DaMarkus Lodge caught 2 passes for 72 yards and 1 TD vs. Georgia. (Photo credit: Petre Thomas, Ole Miss Athletics)

Leading 17-0 heading into the second quarter, Kelly led the offense on two touchdown drives – with TD passes to Engram and DaMarkus Lodge – to put the Rebels up 31-0 at halftime. The defense took care of the rest, pressuring the Bulldogs’ freshman quarterback Jacob Eason, who was sacked three times and threw an interception, as well as limiting the running duo of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel to 123 total rushing yards.

Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze admitted the team used its two, 20-point blown leads (FSU and Alabama) as preparation for Georgia. Kelly thought about those as well as the interceptions he threw in both games, knowing those small mistakes must be eliminated if the team wants to win games in the rough and tumble SEC.

Despite beating a quality opponent like the Bulldogs (3-1, 1-1), Kelly is never satisfied and is always looking to accomplish more.

This win makes a statement, but we have to keep on working,” Kelly said. “We are never satisfied. We just have to keep on working.

Chad Kelly

Kelly turns his attention to Memphis

Kelly is already turning his attention to the Rebels’ October 1 game vs. Memphis. “It’s another game. We got to stay focused. We’ve got to work hard this week, and I think it will pay off.”

(Feature image credit: Petre Thomas, Ole Miss Athletics)

About The Author

Courtney Smith

Courtney is from Memphis and received his Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts from the University of Memphis in May of 2014. He began his journalism career covering the Memphis Tigers Men's basketball team, which landed him an intern position on 730 Yahoo Sports Radio and a position with Rivals.com. A freelance writer for the Associated Press, Courtney is also a member of The Rebel Walk team and reports regularly on Ole Miss football and basketball. Courtney, the father of a six-year old girl named Soniyah, prefers to cover NCAA basketball and football, but is happy to report on any other sport that comes his way.

Leave a Reply

Visit The Rebel Walk Forum

GRIDIRON GALLERY

Get RW Updates

Rebel Walk on Twitter

%d bloggers like this: