Davin Bellamy had an adrenaline rush going after he had hurt his hand on the second drive against Tennessee, so the senior outside linebacker decided to keep playing.
Although he noticed that he had lost his strike, he didn’t feel anything until he strolled into the locker room for halftime.
“My hand really hurts,” Bellamy said, recalling his thoughts from the Sept. 30 victory.
Bellamy went in for x-rays and it was quickly diagnosed that he had fractured his metacarpal (or so he presumes as he pointed to the broken bone on his left hand). Although Georgia had the game in hand, Bellamy felt as if he could return. He did, wearing a 2-3 pound cast.
The way he describes it, the cast is actually a complex apparatus that must be replaced about every two days and worn during practices and games.
It hasn't been easy.
“This is already a tough sport, so when you play it with one hand, it makes it even tougher,” Bellamy said during Tuesday media availability. “It’s frustrating, but I just have to play football with no excuses. It really causes me to be more physical, and it sort of takes that finesse play away.”
Against Tennessee, Bellamy accrued all of his statistics -- two tackles and a sack -- while the adrenaline was still in play and he was without a cast.
After nearly two games with the bulky wrap, Bellamy believes he will be able to shred the apparatus for the Oct. 28 game against Florida. So, it’s one more game that Bellamy will be forced to adjust ahead of the Bulldogs’ bye week.
“When you think about it, it’s very uncomfortable,” Bellamy said. “But when you’re in a game, practice or doing stuff, your mind is off of it. I’m a hand-combat person when it comes to shedding blocks, so with an added few pounds, it slows your hands down. I’m using my helmet a lot now.”
Bellamy has noticed the frustration gradually decrease since the injury took place nearly two weeks ago. He’s working to make positive of the situation and he did so during Tuesday’s practice.
On a pass to Bulldogs’ wide receiver Terry Godwin, Bellamy was able to get his other hand on the throw from strength and conditioning coach Scott Sinclair. After hauling it in between his chest and right (non-injured) hand, Bellamy found 30 yards of green grass.
“Oh yeah, I took it to the house,” Bellamy said.
“It was crazy, and we were like ‘whoa.’ It doesn’t slow his play down," defensive tackle Julian Rochester said. "He’s still moving and getting off the pass rush, there’s no stopping him.”
Bellamy has been a force on Georgia’s second-ranked defense this season, coming up with a number of highlight plays - including the strip sack to win the game against Notre Dame.
At the halfway mark of his senior campaign, Bellamy has collected 17 tackles, two sacks and the aforementioned forced fumble. The new apparatus has made his pass rush more difficult and has resulted in a decline in production, but he’s credited with his approach to the circumstances.
“I think it frustrates him at times,” Georgia head coach Kirby Smart said. “He can’t rip off and tear off like he wants to. He can’t bull and push, but I think he’s gotten better with it this week. It was more frustrating for him last week, but it’s something that you have to get used to. He’s starting to, and he’s shown a lot of toughness to go out there and play with it -- not concerning himself with how he looks, but trying to help the team.”