Georgia football: Jalen Carter is the anchor of the 2022 defense

Jalen Carter sacks Will Levis. (Photo by Steven Limentani/ISI Photos/Getty Images)
Jalen Carter sacks Will Levis. (Photo by Steven Limentani/ISI Photos/Getty Images) /

Georgia football has a lot of weapons for the 2022 season, but one of the biggest names among them is Jalen Carter.

We’ve discussed a few defenders this offseason, but this one deserves a whole series on himself. On and off the field, Carter carries himself with pride. He is a walking definition of what Georgia wants out of its players.

After two seasons behind Jordan Davis and Devonte Wyatt, this season, it’s all about him being the anchor of the front seven. However, don’t let the anchor analogy fool you, he may be a heavy hitter, but he is speedy too.

He could be better than Davis when his college career ends at Georgia. While that statement is a big one to make, Dawg fans who have seen what he can do know it isn’t too far-fetched.

Georgia football will look to Jalen Carter to be the 2022 defensive leader.

Last season, Carter recorded 37 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, one pass breakup, two blocked kicks and 30 quarterback hurries. He was the closest to Travon Walker in quarterback pressures.

Those numbers are with him sharing the load with Davis and Wyatt. While this year will be the first time he truly gets a chance to prove himself, if what he has done in the previous two seasons tell us anything, it’s that Carter is someone to watch.

There was an article from 247Sports that Carter is still a dude, but the hype surrounding him is causing him to overheat. He is a top 2023 NFL Draft pick, but between Blake Brockermeyer and Carl Reed from The Block, they wouldn’t put him that high after watching his film.

However, it’s okay for them to suggest that the 2022 season will be the first time it’s up to him to show he can produce what he did in 2021, if not more. Carter needs more production if he wants to be a top-5 pick in next year’s draft, and he could do that.

That 247Sports duo has every right to feel how they do, but the hype surrounding Carter isn’t overheating — it’s right where it needs to be ahead of the 2022 season.

Georgia will use him strategically and should because Carter is more versatile than people realize. All eyes will be on him in 2022; hopefully, he doesn’t put too much pressure on himself. If Carter plays his game, it’ll be incredible to watch those stats increase off of 2021.

Those 30 quarterback pressures should be something fans circle because that tells us just how ofter Carter got into the backfield. Not to mention he almost had double-digit tackles for loss. Those don’t always happen for defensive linemen like that, but he is someone that made those plays happen.

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There is far more to look forward to with Carter than people realize. Georgia is lucky to have him, and Carter has the tools to succeed in 2022. The Dawgs will need him to be the leader his teammates look to and lead by example. Two things we’re confident Carter can do successfully.