Five alive

For all the talk about quarterbacks having to learn a new offense and mesh with new teammates, along with the health issues we’ve heard about, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that Smart has a full quarterback room for the first time in ages.

The Georgia Bulldogs entered preseason camp last year with security at quarterback due to returning starter Jake Fromm but without much depth.

Former walk-on Stetson Bennett served as Fromm’s backup, while 2019 early enrollee D’Wan Mathis was never cleared to play last season after undergoing surgery to have a cyst removed from his brain. Fromm stayed healthy and guided the Bulldogs to a third consecutive Southeastern Conference Eastern Division title, but he elected to turn pro in January and was a fifth-round pick of the Buffalo Bills.

Bennett and Mathis return to the quarterback competition as Georgia begins Kirby Smart’s fifth preseason camp Monday, but there are also three new faces: early enrollee Carson Beck, Wake Forest graduate transfer Jamie Newman and Southern California transfer JT Daniels. Newman had a mild foot sprain and was limited for some of Georgia’s summer access period, but he is back at full strength, while Daniels has yet to be cleared completely from the torn ACL he sustained in last year’s USC-Fresno State opener.

“We’re excited about all five of those guys,” Smart said Sunday afternoon. “Those guys have done a really good job in their Zoom meetings of paying attention. We’ve only been able to walk through so far, and Jamie has done a good job of standing behind the huddle and standing behind the play, imaginary taking the snap and getting the mental reps.

“D’Wan has done a great job. Carson Beck has done a great job, and Stetson has done a great job. All those guys are really competing, as well as JT. They all have individual strengths. It’s a competitive room, and each one of them have been in a competitive room before.”

There will be some bumps along the way, but between the increased competition and the greater margin for error on the injury-risk front, I’ve got to think Smart likes where he’s at with this group.


Filed under Georgia Football

7 responses to “Five alive

  1. Russ

    If you think the COVID debates have been fierce, can you imagine the QBR debates we’d be having with 5 QBs in a normal pre-season?


  2. practicaldawg

    Stetson Bennet, we hardly knew ye


  3. W Cobb Dawg

    I’m still in awe that Kirby landed Beck, Daniels and Newman in such short order. And 5-star Vandagriff due less than 5 months from now. How many teams would’ve been overjoyed to get just one of them?


  4. otto1980

    The QB depth maybe especially important with COVID. How many teams would be in trouble if a starting QB tested positive.


  5. Down Island Way

    Is this group about this year or next year….”Hello Newman” is your starter in 2020, really believe the Trojan transfer won’t play this year, Mr. Beck will learn more (maybe see some hand off time) by listening, the Vandagriff guy scares me from the stand point of “have transfer will travel” mentality….true, Coach Smart can sell UGA ….