What if UGA quarterback Jake Fromm decides to declare early for the NFL Draft?
This topic became more of a “real thing” this week when it was revealed that Fromm, along with UGA offensive tackle Andrew Thomas, quietly attended the NFL Combine earlier this month, as part of an NCAA program to help inform elite players about what the possible the NFL transition is like.
There have been mixed opinions on Fromm’s NFL future: Some way-too-early mock drafts for 2020 list Fromm as a no-brainer selection in the first round, while other analysts are more reserved at this point, mentioning concerns about his athleticism and his ability to “finish” in the biggest games (which, obviously, may be unfair to Fromm).
Nevertheless, here’s the bottom line: The special invite to this year’s NFL Combine pretty much cements that Fromm is a top-tier prospect, and because he’s considered a top prospect (just like with every other player that was invited by the NCAA), there’s the automatic possibility that Fromm could leave after his junior season.
Would UGA fans be upset if Fromm left early for the NFL? Based on this year’s fan reaction to the UGA juniors such as Elijah Holyfield and Isaac Nauta leaving early — yes, there would be some combination of anger, surprise and positive support.
From my perspective, I would classify myself in the “surprise” category, but for reasons that probably do not make sense as I write them out.
In my (admitted) selfish thinking, I felt like when Justin Fields transferred immediately after his freshman season to Ohio State, there had to be some conversation with Fromm, coach Kirby Smart or someone affiliated with UGA that went something like this. “Justin, we don’t want you to leave, but we’ve got to be honest with you. Jake will be leading this team until he leaves, which will probably two more seasons. He’s our guy.”
Or perhaps, much earlier than that, during the season when Fromm was struggling in the LSU game, Smart or then-offensive coordinator Jim Chaney got in Fromm’s ear during the second half and said: “You know, we’ve got the No. 1 QB recruit in the country (Fields) right behind you on the bench. We could put him in the game right now. But we’re sticking with you, thick or thin. You’re our guy. No matter what, you’re our guy. And you’re going to be our guy for the next three years.”
Again, there’s no evidence to suggest any conversations like this ever occurred. This is just the silly narrative that I’ve created in my own mind. I just felt like there were several times last season that Fields should’ve been given a chance to play a lot more when Fromm struggled. Who knows what happens if Chaney turns over the second half vs. LSU to Fields, and Fields rallies the team to a win? However, because UGA was fiercely loyal to Fromm in those critical moments, I somehow arrived at a conclusion that suggests that Fromm should consider returning the favor for the next two seasons, especially since Fields is long gone.
I know. The more I write this out, the less it makes sense.
But it has helped me come to my conclusion: Switch me to “positive support.” Fromm has been a stellar representative for the University of Georgia both on and off the field. There’s not much more he can give to the Bulldogs.
When the time arrives after this season for Fromm to make his NFL decision, he simply needs to do whatever is best for him and his family — as we all would.
Thoughts? Please post below.