2018 Georgia Bulldogs Preseason Report Card 2018 Georgia Bulldogs Preseason Report Card

2018 Georgia Bulldogs Preseason Report Card

2018 Georgia Bulldogs Preseason Report Card

Football

2018 Georgia Bulldogs Preseason Report Card


With just over 70 days until the return of Georgia football, anticipation is at an all-time high. The 2017 Bulldogs boasted one of the most talented rosters in Georgia history, but with a number of them now on NFL rosters, it’s time to turn to the next breed of Dawgs looking to make an impact in 2018.

With that being said, below you will find a report card for the 2018 team, grading each position group.

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Quarterback: A

Jake Fromm left his mark on the football program last season having a total of 2,615 passing yards in his first season with the Dawgs. It was a great first season, and his performance is expected to improve even more over the next few years.  The addition of Justin Fields only boosts an already superb quarterback position for Georgia.

Running Backs: A

Led by the superstar duo of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, the Bulldog running backs racked up major yards last season. Chubb and Michel collected 2,628 yards alone. Freshman D’Andre Swift made plays also last season, but none better than his 64 yard run against Auburn in the SEC title game. The squadron of backs did a lot of things, but disappoint was not one of them. This season, we look to highly coveted newcomers Zamir White – if he is able to go – and James Cook to begin their legacy in Athens. Backups Elijah Holyfield and Brian Herrien should also see good playing time.

Wide receivers: B+

Georgia’s wide receivers excelled last year headed by Mecole Hardman, Javon Wims and Terry Godwin. Wims, the only departure to the unit, caught 45 passes for a team high 720 yards last season. However, the group does retains Godwin and Hardman, and adds 4-star Tommy Bush.

Tight ends: B

The Bulldog tight ends performed well last season but did nothing exceptional. Although the tight ends were not fed much by quarterback Fromm, they were consistent with opening lanes and providing protection throughout the season.  Isaac Nauta and incoming freshmen John FitzPatrick and Luke Ford will provide Fromm and Fields with some needed assistance, but the loss of Jeb Blazevich will hurt a little.

Offensive line: A

Georgia doesn’t have an offensive line composed of the largest guys in the league, but they are effective at what they do.  The offensive line let the running game take off last season and the incoming recruiting class of Cade Mays and Jamaree Salyer will only help with establishing the running backs.

Defensive line: B+

Lineman John Atkins had 38 tackles by the end of last season. Part of the D-lines’ success was due to their ability to handle multiple players at once, in order for linebackers like Roquan Smith to make the plays.  However, a few key pieces of the defensive line like Atkins and Trent Thompson departed Athens for the NFL. Returning players Jonathan Ledbetter and Tyler Clark are due for big seasons in Athens, leaving the unit in good hands.

Linebackers: B

Roquan Smith led a talented group of linebackers for the Bulldogs last season, but unfortunately, many of them will be leaving.  The “Savages” of Lorenzo Carter, Davin Bellamy, and Roquan Smith will all be playing in the pro’s this year.  It will take some time to replace the Georgia legends at the linebacker position, however, expect Natrez Patrick (probably), Monty Rice, Walter Grant and D’Andre Walker to hold their own in the SEC this coming season.

Defensive Backs: B+

Georgia has a powerful group of defensive backs like Deandre Baker and J.R. Reed returning. Although the group of backs was consistent throughout the season, they suffered major hiccups in game-changing moments.  Look for the unit to see a small drop off this season thanks to the loss of Dom Sanders, Malkom Parrish and Aaron Davis. Just like the linebackers, it will take some time to get to where the backs were before.

Special Teams: A

The Dawgs special teams had an outstanding season compared to previous years. Georgia blocked a total of 4 kicks, a lot higher than the 0 blocked the season before. Kicker Rodrigo Blankenship made all 63 extra points that he attempted throughout the season. The Dawgs special teams are one of the most improved aspects of the football program.  The loss of punter Cam Nizialek will hurt the special teams unit, but kicker Rodrigo Blankenship is still around.

Overall: A

The Georgia Football program had a phenomenal season, highlighted by a national championship appearance last year. This football program has come a long way, and no doubt will leave fans pleased come Fall 2018.  While the Bulldogs lose a lot of talent on both sides of the ball, the top recruiting class is sure to bring in even more success.  To think that Georgia’s Rose Bowl winning team had the least amount of talent in Athens for the next few seasons is incredible.

As Kirby Smart said, “we’re not going anywhere.”

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