Georgia is Jake Fromm’s team

By Justin Hubbard

 

Earlier this week, Georgia head football coach Kirby Smart danced around a question from a reporter.

It was during Smart’s weekly press conference, held Monday afternoon. A reporter asked which quarterback, sophomore Jacob Eason or freshman Jake Fromm, will be the Bulldogs’ starter moving forward now that Eason is cleared to play.

“We compete every position every week,” Smart said. “It is not something we have to announce.”

Smart’s answer was smart (no pun intended) for his sake. Head coaches always want to keep their opponents guessing – this week, it’s Vanderbilt – and he likely accomplished that with his comments. You also don’t want to give the impression you prefer one quarterback over another.

But I don’t have to be so diplomatic here in my column space. Therefore, I’d like to tell you who I think should be Georgia’s starting quarterback from now on.

It’s Jake Fromm.

From the moment Fromm entered to replace the injured Eason during Georgia’s opening matchup against Appalachian State, the Bulldogs’ offense has looked crisper and often been more efficient than in the last few years. A fair amount of that can be credited to Georgia’s stellar rushing attack and some good play calling by offensive coordinator Jim Chaney, but there’s no denying the addition of Fromm added a different element to the offense.

He led Georgia to big wins over Appalachian State and Samford, but his highlights include overall solid play at Notre Dame and great performances against Mississippi State and Tennessee. Fromm has certainly looked like a freshman at times (he’s thrown two interceptions and had a handful of other close calls) but, more often than not, he’s looked poised.

Fromm has stepped in and done this year what most Georgia fans expected Eason to do last year. Fromm took the reins of the team and, to this point, has played as if he was always supposed to be the full-time starter.

Of course, this isn’t to say Eason isn’t a good quarterback. He was a five-star recruit for a reason and there were moments last year where he elevated the Bulldogs, such as in game one against North Carolina and at Missouri.

The key difference, so far, between Eason and Fromm, though, is Fromm has consistently elevated Georgia. For example, Terry Godwin and Javon Wims look the best they ever have during their time at Georgia. That must be mostly attributed to the play of Fromm.

In fact, Fromm’s hit those two guys on passes which, to be honest with you, I don’t think Eason would have made. Eason’s big arm is noteworthy but his accuracy has always been questionable at best.

Eason was streaky last season and, frankly, did not look sharp in his limited action this year against the Mountaineers. As soon as No. 11 took the field, however, his mistakes have been limited and he’s done an exceptional job commanding an offense loaded with veterans.

Both Eason and Fromm are really good quarterbacks, but I think only one of them has the potential to regularly put Georgia in the best position possible to win football games. That’s all Fromm’s done since he assumed the starting role.

It’s clear Georgia has simplified its offensive philosophy this season, which is a welcomed sight, and that has certainly increased the Bulldogs’ – and therefore Fromm’s – chances for success. I’m not giving Fromm all the credit here.

But the kid’s been great. He’s done nothing but lead Georgia with poise, confidence and consistency. I know I’ve used the term “consistency” a bunch in this column but, for me, that’s what this really boils down to. In every game this year, I’ve felt good about Georgia having Fromm under center regardless of the situation. I can’t say the same for last year with Eason.

Georgia is in a great spot. I mean, how many other programs wouldn’t love the problem of choosing between two top-tier quarterbacks?

This situation reminds me a lot of what my other favorite football team, the Dallas Cowboys, experienced last year with Dak Prescott and Tony Romo. I wrote a column about halfway through the season calling for Prescott to remain the starter.

That column wasn’t to say Prescott was necessarily better than Romo. Rather, I didn’t want Dallas to mess up a good thing by changing the dynamic at quarterback.

The Bulldogs have a good thing going with Fromm at quarterback. It’d be smart (pun intended) to keep it going.

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