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ESPN's Mel Kiper Has Big Take on Georgia Bulldogs QB Stetson Bennett

March 6, 2023
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ATHENS - Georgia Bulldogs QB Stetson Bennett is charging up the NFL Draft board. 

That’s according to ESPN’s Mel Kiper, who listed ten players who moved up after his performance at the NFL Combine last week. Georgia LB Nolan Smith was also included on the list.

“I thought Bennett had an outstanding workout Saturday, both in the passing drills and in the athletic testing,” Kiper wrote Monday. “Since he didn't play in an all-star game after his season ended, this was the first time NFL teams have gotten to see him up close. He threw the ball very well. He ran a better-than-expected 4.67 40-yard dash.”

Bennett has been known for his ability to run since shining on the UGA scout team during the program’s run in 2017. Bennett left the program in 2018, but returned a year later. He became the full-time starter at quarterback in the early part of the 2021 season. 

“Bennett's college production isn't in question; he completed 68.3% of his passes with 27 touchdowns and seven picks in 2022. The question is more about his frame, as he measured just under 5-foot-11 -- a little taller than Bryce Young -- and his arm strength,” Kiper wrote. 



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In 2021, Bennett rose to the occasion and led the Bulldogs to the CFP Championship – earning Offensive MVP honors at both the CFP Semifinal and the CFP Championship. However, the recently completed 2022 season was when Bennett silenced nearly all of the critics, turning in outstanding performances all season long before raising his game to another level in the postseason, leading the Dawgs to the SEC title and another CFP title.

“(Bennett) throws the ball hard, but can he consistently connect on a deep out down the field? An arrest for public intoxication in January didn't help his stock in the eyes of front-office execs,” Kiper added. “Bennett also will turn 26 as a rookie. Still, he's in the Round 4 range on my board, and I think he'll have a long NFL career.”

In 2021, Bennett rose to the occasion and led the Bulldogs to the CFP Championship – earning Offensive MVP honors at both the CFP Semifinal and the CFP Championship. However, the recently completed 2022 season was when Bennett silenced nearly all of the critics, turning in outstanding performances all season long before raising his game to another level in the postseason, leading the Dawgs to the SEC title and another CFP title.



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In three postseason games this year (the SEC Championship, CFP Semifinal, and CFP Championship), Bennett completed 64-of-88 (72.8%) passes for 976 yards and 11 touchdowns while also running for three scores and only tallying one interception. For the full season, he was 310-of-454 (68.3%) for 4,127 yards and 27 touchdowns to go with a team-best 10 rushing TDs.

For his career, Bennett passed for 8,428 yards and 66 touchdowns, despite only starting for two full seasons. He ranks in the top five in Georgia history in pass completions, passing yards, passing touchdowns, total offense, completion percentage, and average yards per play. Most impressively, he posted a 29-3 record as the Bulldog starting quarterback

 
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