On Friday, Georgia football quarterback Stetson Bennett was named a finalist for the 2022 Manning Award. This award is given to an elite quarterback while considering their bowl and postseason stats. It is named after Archie, Peyton, and Eli Manning, three of the best quarterbacks to ever play football.
Bennett’s resume for the award was strengthened during the SEC Championship game against LSU. The Mailman went 23-for-29 with 274 yards and four touchdowns in a 50-30 victory over the Tigers. All four of his touchdowns came in the first half as Georgia built a 35-10 lead.
On the season, Bennett has 3,425 yards and 20 passing touchdowns, and he has also rushed for 190 yards and seven touchdowns. His completion percentage is 67.2%, and his total QBR is 150.7. Both of these rank in the top five in the SEC. Those stats are good enough for not only the Manning Award but also potentially the Heisman trophy and other quarterback awards.
Georgia football quarterback Stetson Bennett proved himself worthy of the Manning Award.
His most impressive stat, however, is his win-loss record this year. Archie Manning specifically pointed this out when the finalists were announced for this award. He highlighted the fact that five of the finalists were playing for their conference championships, and the others had their teams in bowl games.
Bennett and the Dawgs are 13-0 this season and are heading to the College Football Playoff for the second straight year. Since 2021, he has only lost one game as the Bulldogs’ starter. His career has been summed up perfectly by ESPN’s Ryan McGee.
The argument could be made that Bennett is the greatest walk-on in college football history — sorry, Rudy. His accomplishments definitely back that up. In his six years with Georgia, he has won two SEC titles, four New Year’s Six Bowls, and a National Championship. Individually, he has been the MVP of the National Championship game, Orange Bowl, and SEC Championship.
Former Bulldog quarterback Aaron Murray even made a bold statement by saying he’s the greatest quarterback in Georgia football history, putting him ahead of guys like Fran Tarkenton, Eric Zeier, David Greene, Matthew Stafford, and Murray himself.
Murray’s statement can be something for Dawg fans to debate as we wait for the College Football Playoff semifinal game. In the meantime, let’s continue to enjoy what the Mailman has accomplished in his remarkable career. His story is one of never giving up on your dreams and ignoring the critics you are bound to come across. The beauty of this story, however, is that it is still being written.