ATHENS ― Jacob Eason is “closer” to being able to return to the field, but coach Kirby Smart isn’t predicting when that will be. He’s not saying whether Eason or Jake Fromm will start at quarterback once Eason returns, either.
“I want the one that gives us the best opportunity to win to play quarterback,” Smart said on Monday. “And you say who is that, tell me who it is. I can’t answer that. It’s based on their performance during the week.”
Eason dressed for the game last Saturday against Mississippi State, though he wasn’t cleared to play. Smart did not say Monday whether Eason would be on the 70-man travel roster for the game this Saturday at Tennessee, but he indicated it was likely. This early in the week, it is unclear if Eason will be available to play.
“We don’t know. Possibility, yeah. We’re going to bring him out there and see where he is, just like we did last week. We think he’s closer, just because last week he improved as the week went on. We expect the same thing,” Smart said. “We’ll find out a lot more today, based on practice and the reps he’s able to take.”
Eason sprained a ligament in his left knee in the first quarter of Georgia’s season opener and was replaced by Fromm, who has led the team to four wins. Eason started 12 games last season.
While Fromm’s play is leading to plenty of debate from the fan base on what should happen when Eason is cleared, Smart isn’t declaring anything yet. He was asked Monday whether Fromm had done enough to remain the starter.
“You guys, I’m going to tell you again: The focus for Jacob Eason is to get healthy and be part of this game plan, learn what to do. The focus for Fromm is to focus on improving and getting better,” Smart said. “The point for both of them is to have team vision, to have the goal to make the team better. So both are working on that. It’s not about them individually.”