With a new coaching staff and several versatile players at wide receiver and offensive line, there are plenty of areas where Georgia will see competition in spring practice. And those are outside the expected three-man quarterback battle.

Wide receiver

Terry Godwin and Isaiah McKenzie are the known commodities at receiver, but neither has any particular size to be a goal line jump-ball threat.

Along with incoming recruits Riley Ridley, Charlie Woerner (6-5, 230), Tyler Simmons, Javon Wims (6-4, 215) and possibly Mecole Hardman, Georgia is looking for consistent targets alongside Reggie Davis.

Some candidates are Michael Chigbu, Jayson Stanley and Shakenneth Williams, but they totaled seven catches last season.

Simmons, at least, said he can make an impact as a freshman.

“I know they have a need for receivers right now, especially a need for speed,” he told the Athens Banner-Herald.

Added coach Kirby Smart, “Let’s hope they at least increase the competition in that room. If you increase competition, sometimes you increase production. That’s what we’re hoping.”

Offensive line

Departures of OT John Theus and OT/OG Kolton Houston leave questions for a line that was reshuffled at midseason in 2015. New line coach Sam Pittman traditionally likes larger lines, so there’s speculation by Dawgnation.com that OG Isaiah Wynn could remain there instead of moving to tackle. Other names on the depth chart include Patrick Allen, Sage Hardin and Sam Madden.

OL Ben Cleveland was the top-rated offensive lineman of Georgia’s 2016 class, but the Dawgs also added OT Chris Barnes and OT Solomon Kindley. Greg Pyke and Brandon Kublanow are among the returning starters who were shifted under the previous coaching regime.

“We’ve got to improve the offensive line,” Smart told the Banner-Herald. “We’ve got to get bigger people, we’ve got to get more depth.”


With the recent surgery for Roquan Smith, questions linger at linebacker, where Georgia had a heavy departure of talent and experience in Jake Ganus, Leonard Floyd and Jordan Jenkins.

Lorenzo Carter, Davin Bellamy and Tim Kimbrough are expected to get the first crack of the starting lineup. Incoming recruit Jaleel Laguins could be in the mix to compete for playing time alongside veterans Chuks Amaechi, Natrez Patrick, Reggie Carter and Juwan Taylor.


Of course the position that Smart said he was “scared to death” about was kicker after Georgia didn’t sign one in the 2016 class.

What’s more, Smart said Georgia doesn’t have an experienced punter, or a returning long-snapper.

Rodrigo Blankenship and William Ham are reportedly two kickers competing for the job. Punter Marshall Long decommitted from Virginia Tech and signed with Georgia after Shane Beamer left Tech to become Georgia’s special teams coordinator.