Jacob Eason’s first seven games as a college quarterback have featured a fair share of peaks and valleys.
Against North Carolina, he had a huge 51-yard completion to Isaiah McKenzie to help lead Georgia to a go-ahead score. Eason struggled against Nicholls State and threw a major interception late in the game.
Against Missouri, Eason lofted a fourth-and-10 game-winning to touchdown with less than two minutes to go. But the following week, Mississippi stifled him from getting into a rhythm offensively.
He threw an incredible 47-yard touchdown against Tennessee with only 10 seconds left in the game (before the Volunteers answered with a desperation touchdown pass of their own). Eason followed that performance with 29 total passing yards at South Carolina. And then against Vanderbilt at home, Eason accounted for a career-best 346 yards with a touchdown.
Eason’s ridden quite the wave thus far and is now in the midst of a bye week.
Head coach Kirby Smart said he’s given Eason a list of what he needs to get better on before Georgia is tasked with preparing for its annual rivalry game against Florida.
“The biggest thing is communication to the group, making sure that everybody is getting the call and understands what it’s supposed to be,” Smart said. “He can fix any mistakes and errors that are there, and then settle his feet in the pocket and read coverages. He’s really gotten better and he’s more proficient in telling you what the coverage was after the play. Teams just don’t line up and make it easy for you. They make it as complicated as they can. Most of them do a good job of confusing young quarterbacks.”
Through seven games, Eason’s thrown for 1,366 yards, nine touchdowns and five interceptions.
He’s shown the big arm at times but has also shown a tendency to make the expected freshman mistake. This week in practice has served as a chance for Eason to focus more on those mistakes so that he can be better equipped for the final five-game stretch Georgia has once the bye week concludes.
“We’re trying to simplify it for him,” Smart said. “We’ve targeted a lot of different periods throughout the day at the open-week practices where we said, ‘Hey, we’re going to mix things up on him and get him some different things, and challenge him.’ That’s the biggest thing, controlling what he can control and improving in the little things. It’s not his arm talent. It comes down to his decision making and what he sees.”