3 reasons Georgia picked up its biggest win of 2023 against Missouri

The Georgia Bulldogs were able to beat Missouri for its most important win of the 2023 season

Missouri v Georgia
Missouri v Georgia / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages

When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released, the Georgia Bulldogs were dropped from their No. 1 spot in the AP Top 25 to No. 2 in the initial CFP rankings.

Luckily, they had an opportunity in Week 10 to make a big statement as they welcomed No. 12-ranked Missouri to Athens.

Kirby Smart's team was able to pick up its biggest win of the 2023 season to date and maintain a stranglehold on the SEC East with a 30-21 win over the Tigers. The tests won't stop as they face Ole Miss next week.

But before that matchup, let's take a look at the three biggest reasons Georgia was able to notch its first signature victory of their quest for a 3-peat.

3. Ladd McConkey, WR

It would be a fair argument to put Daijun Edwards here instead of Ladd McConkey, but it's hard to leave the wide receiver off the list. In Georgia's second game without tight end Brock Bowers, the veteran McConkey was once again the safety valve in the passing offense as he finished the victory with seven receptions for 95 yards.

Carson Beck did a great job of spreading the ball around, but he and McConkey looked as if they were playing a game of catch at times in the win. Whether it was down the field or turning a screen play into a big gain, the experienced pass-catcher made sure to leave a big mark on the Bulldogs' triumph.

2. Carson Beck, QB

When the offense is able to 30+ points without its best player, the credit has to go to the QB. Carson Beck had a good day for the Bulldogs, throwing for 254 yards and two touchdowns on 21-of-32 passing. This wasn't a performance like we saw earlier in the season wherein the junior struggled a bit early but then turned it on, though.

It seems like the offense for the Bulldogs haven't missed a step without Brock Bowers. Of course, this team would obviously be more dangerous with arguably the best player in college football on the field. Still, Beck's arm has been able to make up for the injury and has allowed the offense to not miss a beat.

1. The Georgia Defense

Without question, the Georgia defense was the driving force behind this win. While Missouri put up 21 points, the Bulldogs defense showed up with key stops throughout this game. Specifically, their coverage on Tigers star receiver Luther Burden III was critical and limited quarterback Brady Cook.

Burden, who has been a monster all season, was limited to just three catches for 53 yards in the game. Moreover, the Georgia D forced two interceptions from Cook, including a game-sealing pick late in the fourth quarter. They stepped up against the toughest offense they've seen this season, and they'll have to do it again next week against Ole Miss.

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