The Blue Devils (3-1, 2-0 Region 5-AA) are one of two remaining unbeaten teams in region play — along with No. 9 Heard County — after they knocked Bowdon out of that category last week with a 19-13 victory at Warren P. Sewell Field.
Tiger coach Seth Rogers said this year’s Manchester team is a typical Manchester product that will present a tough task on the road for his squad tonight.
“They’re big, they’re physical, they’ve got speed. They’re just relentless on defense. When they played Bowdon, I thought Bowdon did a great job against them. I think they just made too many mistakes at the end of the ball game and it really cost them,” Rogers said. “But they’re a good football team. They’re well-coached and it’s going to be a big challenge for us.”
And while the Blue Devils’ physicality is one thing, Rogers said the Tigers (1-4, 1-2) need to go in focused on playing their game and cleaning up the mistakes that have hurt them in recent weeks.
“We’ve just got to continue to get better. We can’t go in worrying about how physical they are. You know, we went down there last year and won a football game and it was a physical football game. Manchester is Manchester. They’re going to be physical, they’re going to play good defense and they’re not going to make a lot of stupid mistakes,” Rogers said.
The Tigers have dropped two straight region games to Kendrick and Spencer, respectively, and are starting a brutal four-game stretch that includes dates with 5-AA heavyweights Manchester, Bowdon, Heard County and Bremen in the next four games.
“We’ve got a tough four-game swing right here, starting with Manchester and finishing with Bremen. Not to discount Chattahoochee County [on Nov. 9], but these four in a row are pretty tough. But it’s like I told the kids, all we can do is get better,” Rogers said.
“We have yet to play our best football. You look at us and you look at our record, some of these teams may not take us as seriously as they should. If we play our best football and they’re not playing their best, we’ll have a shot to win the football game. I still believe our kids can get the job done. We’ve just got to maintain our composure and focus and believe we can win. If we do those things, I believe we’ll have a shot to be successful.”