Georgia Football: The Return of Quarterback Stetson Bennett

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 01: Head coach Kirby Smart (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 01: Head coach Kirby Smart (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
(Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Stetson Bennett provides Kirby Smart with a great opportunity

As of right now, the Georgia Bulldogs will have four scholarship quarterbacks on their roster next year: Jake Fromm, Stetson Bennett, Dwan Mathis, and John Rhys Plumlee (who is also a baseball commit). Smart managed to flip Mathis away from Ohio State at the last minute, giving the Dawgs their heir apparent to Fromm now that Justin Fields is transferring.

With Bennett signing it gives Smart a player that already knows the offensive system well. This means that Smart can rely on Bennett to know the offense and to perform adequately if and when he is called upon.

With the Bennett signing, it gives Smart an interesting opportunity to consider. Fromm has at least one more year left at UGA, and while I expect him to leave for the draft in 2020 to become an eventual first round pick, he could surprise and stay his senior year.

Either way, Mathis would presumably take over once Fromm is done. The best thing for Mathis is to let him learn the playbook well and learn from Fromm as well. With Bennett signing, it gives Smart someone he knows he can rely on to be a solid number two quarterback while Mathis red-shirts.

Because Bennett signed with Georgia, Smart can afford to red-shirt Mathis his freshman year. Doing so would still give the Bulldogs a game-day quarterback depth chart of Fromm, Bennett, Plumlee, and this year’s third stringer Matthew Downing.

Even if Plumlee decides to go elsewhere after the signing of Bennett and Mathis, the Bulldogs could still red-shirt Mathis. Doing so would give them a similar depth chart to this year, with Fromm starting, Bennett backing Fromm up (in place of Fields), and Downing retaining his third string status.

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This year, because there were only two scholarship quarterbacks on the roster, Fields could not red-shirt in case of an injury to Fromm. However, now that there will be at least three, possibly four, scholarship quarterbacks on the roster, Smart can red-shirt Mathis and give him a full year to learn the ins and outs of the offense without having to worry about rushing him onto the field.