Spring practice is a little more than a month away, which means Georgia’s competition at various spot will soon begin.
At positions like running back and tight end, the practice reps will be more valuable since those groups are est
ablished. At receiver and offensive line, however, there could be plenty to sort out and experiment with. It should make for some interesting decisions for head coach Kirby Smart and his staff to arrive at once the 15 practices are over.
For now, however, here’s an early look at how the depth chart on offense projects.
(Note: Only freshman early-enrollees are included in this since it is a pre-spring projected depth chart.)
Jacob Eason (Soph.)
Jake Fromm (Fr.)
Brice Ramsey (Sr.)
The skinny: Smart has already touted the fact that a competition will take place between Eason, Georgia’s 2016 starter for 12 of 13 games, and early-enrollee Fromm. This will be a position to monitor, although it would still take a lot for Eason not to be Georgia’s starting quarterback when the 2017 season begins.
Nick Chubb (Sr.)
Sony Michel (Sr.)
Brian Herrien (Soph.)
Elijah Holyfield (Soph.)
The skinny: It’s a loaded backfield for the spring, and therefore, you’d have to think Chubb and Michel don’t see as many reps. They are a year in to Georgia’s new offensive system and don’t need to spend the spring learning what offensive coordinator Jim Chaney wants to do. It could be a great opportunity for Herrien and Holyfield to see added snaps.
Christian Payne (Sr.)
The skinny: Payne was the primary fullback for Georgia in 2016. He’ll assume that role once again as a senior.
Javon Wims (Sr.)
Michael Chigbu (Jr.)
Jayson Stanley (Jr.)
The skinny: Toward the end of the season, Wims emerged as a go-to target for Eason. His best game of the season came against Kentucky, in which he caught five passes for 90 yards. Chigbu and Stanley are good blockers on the perimeter, but will need to use this spring to refine their pass catching. Chigbu finished with nine catches for 88 yards this past season and Stanley, who started five games, went without a grab.
Riley Ridley (Soph.)
Terry Godwin (Jr.)
Shakenneth Williams (Sr.)
Jeremiah Holloman (Fr.)
The skinny: Ridley showed he has play-making potential on the outside, evidenced by his 47-yard touchdown against Tennessee. He and Godwin figure to rotate in that role quite a bit during the 2017 season. This is also a position Holloman, one of the six early enrollees, could get a look at. Of course, Georgia will have three more receivers joining the team in the summer, so this position group’s competition will be far from over after the spring.
Tyler Simmons (Soph.)
The skinny: Georgia needs to replace the valuable production Isaiah McKenzie gave out of the slot. Godwin is the most logical choice at the moment, considering his speed and ability to make defenders miss in the open field. Simmons is another receiver who could get a look here based on his speed and quickness, as well.
Isaac Nauta (Soph.)
Jeb Blazevich (Sr.)
Charlie Woerner (Soph.)
Jackson Harris (Jr.)
The skinny: As a receiving target out of the slot, Nauta proved very valuable for the offense with 29 catches for 361 yards and three touchdowns. With another solid spring, Nauta could improve on those totals in 2017. All four of Georgia’s contributing tight ends figure to see the field. It will once again be one of the strong suits on offense.
D’Marcus Hayes (Jr.)
Kendall Baker (Jr.)
The skinny: This is a tough position to project at the moment. But ultimately, it would appear the coaching staff would like for Hayes, a junior college transfer and early enrollee, to win the left tackle job. Hayes is a big lineman at 6-foot-6 and 320 pounds and would provide the kind of size offensive line coach Sam Pittman is looking for.
Isaiah Wynn (Sr.)
Pat Allen (Soph.)
The skinny: The coaches would prefer to play Wynn at left guard, which is another reason why they would like for Hayes to take the left tackle spot. Wynn started the first 12 games at left guard before starting at left tackle against TCU. But even then, he switched back to left guard after the first series.
Lamont Gaillard (Jr.)
Dyshon Sims (Sr.)
The skinny: The plan for some time has been for Gaillard to be Georgia’s center. Now that Brandon Kublanow has graduated, Gaillard will get that chance. Sims, however, is someone to watch as he has repped at all five spots in practice last season. If Gaillard can’t get the job done early, Sims could get a look. Redshirt freshman Chris Barnes is someone else to keep an eye out for this position.
Solomon Kindley (So.)
Ben Cleveland (Fr.)
The skinny: As of now, it’s unknown if Kindley, who played one snap in 2016, will receive a redshirt. Either way, he was considered higher up on Georgia’s offensive linemen list than Cleveland and gets the edge at right guard. Cleveland redshirted in 2016 and has great size for the position. Smart was complimentary of Cleveland during bowl practices and seems to believe he could be a factor.
Aulden Bynum (Sr.)
The skinny: For now, Sims gets the nod at right tackle, a position he was second on the depth chart at in 2016. But when freshman Isaiah Wilson arrives this summer, this could easily change. If Wilson is able to win the starting right tackle job during preseason practice, Sims would likely move over to right guard. Given Sims’ versatility, Georgia will have a chance to mix and match its offensive line during spring practice, which should prove important when deciding the best five to play.