What we learned from Spring: Free Safety

Thomas Davis

Georgia spring practice concluded with its annual G-Day game. Here is a look at the Free Safeties:

For Georgia the free safety spot is similar to the Mike linebacker spot in terms of depth at the position. The Mike spot has Odell Thurman, a potential All-American, and then very little experience. At free safety, Thomas Davis is the potential All-American and the rest of the players are certainly inexperienced.

We learned this spring that Davis is the one player in the Georgia secondary that the Bulldogs can not be without. He is done moving back and forth from linebacker to safety during the middle of the seasons; Davis will be at free safety for the rest of his Georgia career. How long will that career last? Probably only 13 more games.

That is why Georgia will have to rely on youth to back Davis up this fall. The coaching staff was unsuccessful at getting a safety in the last few years that could learn at Davis' side. Now Georgia will have to depend on Thomas Flowers, a converted cornerback, and others to provide depth at the safety spot. Olaolu Sanni-Osomo was the number two free safety coming into the spring but he will likely miss the 2004 with an injury.

Georgia needs to figure out how to keep Davis healthy and at the same time get the younger players some experience so that when he leaves, which will likely be after Georgia's bowl game, someone will have a clue as to what's going on at free safety.

Key to this position:

Davis is one of the most explosive playmakers in the SEC. He can cover in the secondary and has shown that he will stop the run. He won't have to do that with the linebackers that are in front of him in 2004, which could lead to him getting a lot of blitzing opportunities. Depth needs to be addressed right away in August.

Depth chart shuffle:

Davis is the starter and Sanni-Osomo is gone. Flowers moved to free safety in the spring but be might have to move around with fellow non-starting safeties Tra Battle and Chris Burgett until a good rotation is figured out.

2004 Prediction:

Davis will be no less than 1st team All-SEC after the season is over which will lead to his departure in January.

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