LOOK: Playmakers come into focus as Kirby Smart says offense is ‘in a growth stage’
The Georgia football team was dealt another tough blow this week when quarterback Jamie Newman opted out of the 2020 season.
It was just another set back for another offense that has sustained quite a few of them this offseason. In addition to trying to replace a number of key starters and installing a new offense led by Todd Monken during a pandemic, it also lost promising wide receiver Dominick Blaylock for the season with an ACL injury.
And given the limited practice time prior to the first game, it has made things very tricky in terms of finding out what each player is capable of doing. Essentially Georgia is trying to find out which players it can count at this point.
“Sometimes I don’t know what you can do until I call it and see if you can do it and we’re still trying figure out what that is,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said. “We’re in that stage.”
In addition to the Georgia quarterback battle, it’s trying to sort and find its top playmakers as well. George Pickens seems like the most obvious candidate but in addition to him, the likes of Zamir White and James Cook seem to have broken out as well
The Bulldogs have a number of young players and newcomers, such as freshman receiver Jermaine Burton and tight end Tre McKitty. Integrating them into the offense will be key as the Bulldogs now have less than three weeks until the first game of the 2020 season.
Georgia did scrimmage on Saturday but that was the last one of the fall season. The Bulldogs have around 12 practices left in their preseason.
“We’re in a growth stage in regards to that and the good news is that we’ve got a lot of work to do, mentally, in preparation to get ready for the first game but also to get our offense in sync and in rhythm so we can be able to hit things in rhythm,” Smart said.
A number of those playmakers we’re photographed last week during practice, as the likes of Burton, McKitty, White and Cook were some of the more interesting players photographed.
Smart further went into how difficult it is to get live looks for the quarterbacks, especially given the injury concerns. Both JT Daniels and D’Wan Mathis missed most of last season due to injury and the Bulldogs have to be careful with them, even more so now after Newman’s departure.
“It’s a hard measuring stick because you’re trying to judge whether the guy is down, not down, did he break the tackle, did he not break the tackle? So, no, you’re not getting the full exposure to what you’d like,” Smart said. The only way you’re going to get that is, a, scrimmage live or, b, play a game. And the game is next in line for us outside of some other practices to get better.”
You can listen to Smart’s full comments following the second scrimmage in the video below.
Georgia football coach Kirby Smart speaks on offense after second scrimmage
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