ATHENS — It’s still way too early to look too much into the various moves on the Georgia offensive line, because there will be various more moves. Still, one that was on display this week is at least worthy of keeping an eye on.
Solomon Kindley, a starter for most of last season at right guard, was working with the first team at left guard during Thursday’s spring practice.
Kendall Baker, the starter at left guard last season, was with the second team at left tackle.
This was just during one practice, of course, and was just one look. It does appear the coaches are mixing and matching as they not only have players compete for spots but also prepare in case they need a Plan B.
For instance, Andrew Thomas remains the starting left tackle, and there’s no reason to think that would change. But Baker getting a look at left tackle could be in case he’s needed there, as he would give the team some experience.
Kindley, meanwhile, has been working second team right guard behind Ben Cleveland, who wrested away the starting position late last season. Kindley could be competing to unseat Baker, or as a backup option there.
But there has also been buzz this spring about Trey Hill, the freshman early enrollee who continues to work second team at left guard. And five-star Jamaree Salyer enters the fray this summer.
Lamont Gaillard remained the starting center and Isaiah Wilson the starting right tackle.
The second team, meanwhile, featured a fifth-year senior (Baker) and then three true freshman (Hill, center Warren Ericcson and right tackle Cade Mays) and a redshirt freshman (right guard Netori Johnson).
Defensive lineman missing
Junior Justin Young, a reserve defensive lineman, was not seen at practice. That doesn’t help what was already emerging as an issue this spring: Depth on the defensive line.
Junior Michael Barnett suffered a knee injury last week and may not be available the rest of the spring. So the team is down to eight scholarship defensive lineman.
“Not many at that position,” head coach Kirby Smart said after last Saturday’s practice. “We’re excited about the guys we’ve got coming in. I think it’s tough to play as a true freshmen. We had that crowd of Tyler (Clark) and Julian (Rochester) and Michail (Carter) and David (Marshall) that all really helped us that one year. We’re certainly going to need some help depth-wise. I think the key is going to be staying healthy. Losing two guys like John John (Atkins) and Trenton (Thompson), I don’t think you’d think it would have that much affect but we really only gained one in Devonte Wyatt so the subtle effect of that with Michael Barnett being ruled out has put us short.”