Georgia may have found some closure at one of its offensive line positions as one of the Bulldogs’ seniors is ready to exclusively play left tackle.
Isaiah Wynn, who has mostly played guard in his two previous seasons with the program, is stepping up the challenge, as offensive line coach Sam Pittman needs him to focus elsewhere.
While Kirby Smart called it “musical chairs” as spring practice began on Tuesday, Wynn seemed adamant that the left tackle position is solidified and that he will start there to open the season – against Appalachian State on September 2.
“Anywhere on the offensive line, I love, but I think I have played better (at tackle) due to the chip on my shoulder,” Wynn said. “I need to prove I can play tackle, because a lot of people think I’m too small to play it in the SEC.”
Wynn has been able to put himself in a safe position to earn the significant playing time at the position due to Georgia’s offseason workout regimen. He lightheartedly added that a few trips to Krispy Kreme and Zombie Coffee and Donuts in downtown Athens may have attributed to his offseason weight gain as well.
The now 305-pound pass blocker was evidently overjoyed with his work in the weight room, after being around 285 pounds throughout his junior campaign.
“I gained about 20 pounds, and it’s different,” Wynn said. “I’m stronger and more stable, not being pushed around as much. It feels good. Now I’m trying to get back on track and maintain.”
Georgia made its offensive line group a priority for its 2017 recruiting class, adding six offensive linemen. One – D’Marcus Hayes – is already on campus and participating in practices in a mid-year enrollee. Wynn has competed with Hayes, Alden Bynum, Kendall Baker and Michael Barnett throughout the first week of spring practice but appears to be a clear frontrunner.
Newcomers will be added into that competition pool when they arrive on campus on June 1, and there were many that believed that Georgia’s highest-rated addition to the 2017 class, Isaiah Wilson, would have a legitimate chance to be the team’s left tackle.
Even so, Wynn believes he has that position locked down, and the competition can be beneficial in a different way.
“It will be good competition, I’m excited about the new guys coming in,” Wynn said. “It’s good to have the guys behind you be able to push you to be a better offensive lineman. I’m really looking forward to seeing those guys.”
Wynn had played 12 of 13 games at left guard in the 2016 season, and it brings the senior some relief to know that he likely won’t need to be concerned about shifting throughout the group.
“I can focus more and worry about one position, and not have to play two or three,” Wynn said.