Georgia football instant observations following convincing road win over Auburn

Georgia football-Auburn-instant observations-2021
October 9, 2021 Auburn, Alabama - Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett (13) runs with the ball during the first half of an NCAA college football game at Jordan–Hare Stadium in Auburn, Alabama on Saturday, October 9, 2021. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

Auburn pretty clearly dared Stetson Bennett to beat them. The Tigers just didn’t count on redshirt freshman wide receiver Ladd McConkey aiding the senior quarterback in doing just that.

McConkey led Georgia in receiving on Saturday, catching five passes for 135 yards. Statistically speaking, it’s the best game a Georgia wide receiver has played this season.

It’s not the first time McConkey has impressed the season. He scored twice against Vanderbilt and led the Bulldogs in receiving against Arkansas.

It just proved to be another big performance from the Chatsworth, Ga., in a season where many didn’t expect much from the 6-foot, 185-pound receiver.

Stetson Bennett looks sharp in passing attack

For the second year in a row, Bennett went out and played a strong game against a ranked Auburn team.

He hit on a number of explosive plays, connecting on pass plays of 20-plus yards to Brock Bowers, Ladd McConkey and Darnell Washington. His first touchdown pass went to Adonai Mitchell, who won thanks to a nifty route.

Bennett efficiently completed 14 of his 21 passes for 231 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Injuries continue to mount for Georgia

You can add two more big names to the Georgia injury list, with Smith and Jamaree Salyer joining the group.

Smith suffered a shoulder injury on the opening drive of the game. He was replaced by Dan Jackson. Salyer went down in the second quarter with a right ankle injury. Broderick Jones came in for him at left tackle.

Wide receivers Arian Smith and Dominick Blaylock did not make the trip for Georgia, though Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint did for the Bulldogs. Jermaine Burton and Kenny McIntosh did not play in the game.

JT Daniels did make the trip on Saturday and Kirby Smart did at least provide an encouraging update on his future, even though Daniels did not play.

“He threw more on Thursday than he has all week and he didn’t have any pain,” Smart told CBS’ Jenny Dell. “As he continues to throw and warm-up, we think he’s going to be much better. Today we think it’ll probably be Stetson but he can play if he has to.”

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NextRECAP: Georgia 34, Auburn 10
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