Nose guard John Jenkins sustained a mild hamstring pull in his left leg during the full pads practice, according to director of sports medicine Ron Courson. Jenkins is working behind Kwame Geathers, who already was out Friday with an undisclosed ailment that is said to be minor and shouldn’t sideline him much longer.
That’s nearly 700 pounds missing from the middle of the defensive line.
“That kind of day,” defensive line coach Rodney Garner said.
Georgia opens its season two weeks from today against Boise State.
Tyson was the starter at nose guard last season, but shifted to end after Georgia signed the 6-3, 342-pound Jenkins from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. The 6-6, 350-pound Geathers, the defensive MVP this spring, has held onto the starting spot this preseason.
“He’ll be fine,” Todd Grantham said.
Geathers is “continuing to play like he played in the spring," he said.
The injuries gave redshirt freshman Mike Thornton “a lot of practice reps,” Garner said. Even sophomore end Garrison Smith got some work at nose guard.
“The answer is you’ve got to get through practice,” said Garner, who said even Abry Jones could play the position. “You’ve got to adjust and do what you’ve got to do.”
Wooten coming on
Rantavious Wooten, fighting for a spot in the Bulldogs’ receiver rotation, is the third wideout behind Tavarres King and Marlon Brown in the receiver rotation, offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said.
“Every practice I take it as `It’s game day,’” Wooten said. “For me, it’s a really personal thing considering how my season went last year. That’s not a good feeling.”
Wooten had just seven catches for 41 yards last season—with his lone touchdown catch a 9-yard first-quarter grab against Tennessee.
He was slowed by nagging injuries, including to his left foot, but had five catches for 61 yards and a touchdown in Wednesday's scrimmage.
“He had to be more consistent,” Bobo said. “He’s shown flashes of making plays, but hasn’t been consistent. He’s been very consistent and had a great camp.”
Bobo said Michael Bennett, Malcolm Mitchell and Taylor Bradberry are in the top six receiver rotation.
“Mitchell’s making a push to get in that top three,” Bobo said of the freshman. “We’re kind of rotating every day and Mitchell was out a little bit today and Michael Bennett stepped up and made a lot of plays.”
Bobo said he wasn’t sure what Mitchell’s injury was.
Receiver Israel Troupe, who has been dealing with a groin injury, and freshman Christian Conley “are fighting to get in that top six,” Bobo said.
Lee on rebound
Redshirt sophomore Dallas Lee, who did not practice this spring due to a respiratory problem, has emerged as the top backup on the offensive line.
Lee is working at right guard and center.
“I have no problem with Dallas being in the game,” offensive line coach Will Friend said. “I told him this is the first time I’ve been around you for six months. Two weeks ago is the first time I got to work with him because we couldn’t do anything in the summer. That was good to get him. He’s smart and he knows what’s going on.”
The backup left tackle in case of injury would be starting left guard Kenarious Gates. Austin Long, who missed nearly two weeks with mononucleosis, has returned fully “and done some pretty good things,” Friend said.
Guard Kolton Houston needs to make a push to get playing time.
“He’s got to do better for us and we’ve got to feel better about him because he can do it,” Friend said. “He’s got about a week and a half to prove (it.).”
This and that
Freshman tailback Isaiah Crowell (groin) practiced in a non-contact jersey Friday. Crowell “did some good things in his blitz pickup,” Bobo said, but still is not back at full speed. Junior Tailback Richard Samuel (quadriceps) was in a non-contact jersey and was limited to individual drills. …Coaches said Bacarri Rambo is still getting some first-team safety work even though he scrimmaged with the No. 2 unit on Wednesday. Sanders Commings could start with Shawn Williams at safety now that Brandon Boykin and Branden Smith are the top two corners. “We’re going to continue to roll our guys and get the best combination out there,” Grantham said. … Outside linebacker Ray Drew and Amarlo Herrera remain out with shoulder injuries. Grantham said Drew will “be ready for the game against Boise.”