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Pick problems
Stafford having more issues with interceptions

ATHENS - Matthew Stafford is moving up on some big names on Georgia's career passing records - including for interceptions.

David Greene finished with a school-record 72 touchdown passes and 32 interceptions as a four-year starter for coach Mark Richt from 2001-04.

Stafford has 38 touchdown passes and 31 interceptions with three regular-season games left in his junior season.

Stafford is on the verge of matching Greene's interceptions, even though Greene's total came in almost 600 more pass attempts.

Stafford began the season with no interceptions in the first four games, drawing praise for his growth in his third season. But his problems with interceptions have re-emerged in recent weeks. He has thrown seven interceptions in his last four games, including three in last week's 49-10 loss to Florida.

For the season, Stafford has 12 touchdown passes and eight interceptions.

Stafford retains the support of Richt, who reminded reporters on Tuesday that interceptions can't always be blamed on the quarterback.

'I've not lost any faith in Matthew whatsoever,' Richt said as he reviewed the loss to Florida and talked about his No. 14 Bulldogs' game at Kentucky on Saturday

'When you look at them one by one they don't look as bad as when you say seven,' Richt said. 'Some of them, you might get a ball tipped at the line of scrimmage, you might have a receiver who ran the wrong route, which you are not going to say and lay somebody out there after a ballgame. Stafford is not going to do that. We're not going to do that either.

'It's a combination of things. Sometimes there is a guy who is getting ready to hit him in the throat and sometimes he just needs to throw the ball away and sometimes he needs to eat it. Ultimately it's the quarterback's responsibility on the picks, but there are some circumstances that are a little bit out of his control, too.'

Each of the three interceptions against Florida came in the second half. Georgia abandoned its attempts at a balanced offense as the Gators' 14-3 halftime lead quickly grew with 21 third-quarter points.

'Interceptions happen,' Stafford said Tuesday. 'I understand that. That's just the way it goes sometimes. Obviously Saturday we tried to get back in the game throwing the ball a bunch. I'm going to take chances trying to get us a touchdown anytime we're not doing well on offense."