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Georgia Bulldog Receivers Stepping Up Early This Season

September 13, 2022

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ATHENS - Every year we see one of Kirby Smart’s young receivers step up and have an impactful first season.

We saw Georgia Bulldog freshmen George Pickens and Dominick Blaylock play early in 2019. Jermaine Burton made plays as a freshman in 2020. Of course last year, freshman AD Mitchell was the one who stepped up in his first season.

This year, it’s been freshman Dillon Bell who has seen early playing time as a freshman. The former three-star from Texas was turning heads in fall practice and caught his first touchdown as a Bulldog during Georgia’s 33-0 win over Samford.

During his Monday press conference, Georgia head coach Kirby Smart spoke about Bell and another young wideout in Jackson Meeks

“Jackson (Meeks) actually went in and played” Smart said.  “I thought Jackson did a good job in the moment. And Dillon got to play, as well. You know, it's hard to play just two or three wideouts in a game, especially early in the season when the temperature is as such and you're trying to get guys in game-condition. So we have a lot of guys that play at wideout. We've got several young players that are really talented. Dillon being one of those. They've got to grow up. And the best way to grow up is to go play. So we're going to keep getting those guys better and keep giving them more opportunities. They got to be able to play in the moment.”

With star receiver AD Mitchell possibly missing the South Carolina game, Bell and Meeks could see the field even more this Saturday in Columbia. Smart gave another update on Mitchell on Monday.

“AD will not be able to practice today (Monday)”, Smart said before Monday’s practice. “We're hopeful that he's able to make it. Ron's optimistic, but you know how that goes. It's more where he goes and where he's at.”

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Speedy wideout Arian Smith has to undergo ankle surgery in Mid-August, but Smart said his explosive receiver is inching closer and closer to coming back.

“Yeah, Arian is coming back”, Smart said. “He's been able to do some weight-bearing running. He's been hitting some good speeds. Hopefully he'll be able to get back -- we don't know when he's going to be back. It's doubtful he's back this week, but he is back running and he's not 100 percent. But excited for what he's been able to do. He's not cutting and breaking. He's getting better and you can see it in his eyes. He's getting healthier. We just got no idea when he's going to be back.”

We’ve seen other receivers get on the field like Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint, Kearis Jackson, De’Nylon Morrissette and Dominick Blaylock, but with Mitchell and Smith’s return still uncertain, look for younger receivers to continue seeing playing time over the next couple of weeks.

Tags: Dillon Bell
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