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All too often, the backup quarterback is the most popular player on a roster. However, that will not be the case for Georgia Bulldog fans this season.
JT Daniels is the returning starter, and he has the full support of everyone wearing black and red. The guy completed 67.2 percent of his passes, averaged over 300 passing yards a game and had a 5-to-1 touchdown-to-interception ratio, so that makes sense.
With that said, the backup quarterback is still an important position in Athens.
Fifth-year senior Stetson Bennett has plenty of experience. He’s spent years in the program and even got five starts last season, but he was underwhelming and the offense struggled with him at the helm.
Then there’s freshman phenom Brock Vandagriff. The five-star in-state quarterback has plenty of supporters within the program, but could he realistically beat out Bennett? Some would say yes, but there’s still a learning curve.
“Brock has the least amount of reps and, I guess, familiarity with the offense, so his learning curve is greater,” Smart recently said, via Dawg Nation. “But he’s also picking it up quick, especially for a mid-year freshman.”
His rise up the depth chart could come later, but he isn’t Bennett’s biggest competition for QB2 — at least not right now. Instead, that falls to redshirt freshman Carson Beck. Beck is a guy whom many have forgotten about, but he reportedly had a good scrimmage this past Saturday.
At one point, Beck was an Alabama commit. He spent almost a year as a Tide pledge, but made the switch to Georgia in March of 2019. According to the 247Sports Composite Rankings, the Jacksonville, Fla. native was barely a top-250 prospect, but he was highly recruited anyways.
At 6-foot-4, 215 pounds, he possesses excellent size for a second-year player. Mobility isn’t much of a factor, but he’s got the tools needed to eventually become a successful signal caller from within the pocket.
In some ways, the whisperings about his performances are similar to things we heard about Mac Jones early in his Alabama career. Despite competing against superior talents such as Jalen Hurts, Tua Tagovailoa and eventually Bryce Young, we always heard about Jones steadily improving behind the scenes.
He waited his turn and took advantage of the opportunity. Now he’s a national champion, Heisman finalist, Davey O’Brien Award winner and projected top-10 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. He’s done all that as a pocket passer too.
That’s a best-case scenario for Beck though because he’s the quarterback in Athens who doesn’t get much thought. Between Daniels, Vandagriff and current five-star commit Gunner Stockton, the Bulldogs are loaded with high-profile talent.
Beck doesn’t fall in line with those guys, but he’s doing what needs to be done behind the scenes. If he can build on Saturday’s performance and continue working on mastering himself, who knows where he might be in the next couple years.
In fact, we might even see him as the No. 2 guy on the depth chart behind Daniels this upcoming season.
Georgia has a load of riches at the position, and that’s a good problem to have.
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.