ATHENS — Georgia was without two of its top weapons to open the 2023 season, as wide receiver Ladd McConkey and running back Daijun Edwards did not play in the team’s 48-7 win over UT-Martin.
Georgia head coach Kirby Smart provided an update on how the two players are doing heading into the second game of the season.
“Daijun we feel like could’ve played in that game,” Smart said. “He practiced, he warmed up, he did everything leading up to the game. He’s actually had this injury before - can’t remember if it was Vanderbilt or during the off week last year - very similar injury. We feel good about him. I haven’t seen him practice today, so I don’t know that, but we feel good about Daijun and thought he could have gone last week.
“Ladd, he’s day to day,” Smart said. “We thought he might be able to go last week, and he was really a game-time decision. Didn’t feel good on Friday so we held him on Saturday. He’s running today, but he’s dealing with some back pain that’s been lingering for him.”
McConkey is dealing with a back injury, while Edwards has a sprained MCL. Smart felt after the game that Edwards could’ve played. McConkey meanwhile did not dress out in the 48-7 win. Georgia did see running back Kendall Milton play through a hamstring injury. The senior led the team in rushing with 54 yards. Georgia’s leading receiver was Brock Bowers, who caught 5 passes for 77 yards
Georgia did see some key players return to the field. Kamari Lassiter returned the field after dealing with a foot injury for most of August. Smael Mondon did play in the win as well, but he was limited to a third-down role. Georgia started Jamon Dumas-Johnson and Xavian Sorey at inside linebacker, with freshman CJ Allen also playing significant snaps.
“Hard to play a freshman linebacker in our defense. He and Raylen being here in the spring have really grown,” Smart said on Saturday of Allen. “Raylen would’ve probably been in the same boat as him had it not been for his knee. CJ picks things up. He’s very smart and intelligent. He’s conscientious. He can do things right. He has a chance to be a good player.
Georgia was without a few players on Saturday, as freshmen Lawson Luckie (ankle), Wilson (knee) and Chris Peal (toe) all did not dress out. Linebacker EJ Lightsey also did not dress out in the win, as he has been dealing with some shoulder pain.
Georgia did see cornerback Kamari Lassiter return to the field on Saturday, as he had been dealing with a foot injury.
“Coming out of that black jersey, it was like a burden let off me,” Lassiter said. “Finally being able to let loose and play football the way I’ve always played.”
Smart did say that wide receiver Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint will be available this week. He did not play in the team’s win over UT-Martin.
The Bulldogs take on Ball State on Saturday, with the game starting at 12 p.m. ET and will air on the SEC Network.
Georgia football injury report
Ladd McConkey, back -- probable
Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint, team discipline -- probable
Jackson Meeks, foot -- questionable
De’Nylon Morrissette, groin -- questionable
Kendall Milton, hamstring -- probable
Daijun Edwards, knee -- questionable
EJ Lightsey, undisclosed
Lawson Luckie, ankle -- doubtful
Raylen Wilson, knee-- doubtful
Chris Peal, toe -- doubtful
Branson Robinson, knee -- out