- David Ching, ESPN Staff Writer
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Editor’s note: Each day leading up to Georgia’s Capital One Bowl date with Nebraska, we reviewed the season for a key Bulldogs player and attempted to project what’s next. In today’s final installment, we’ll look at nose guard Kwame Geathers.
No. 99 Kwame Geathers
37 tackles, 5 TFL, 1 sack
Role in 2012: Geathers continued to share time at with senior John Jenkins at nose guard and also played alongside Jenkins in some defensive packages that utilized the two players’ monstrous size.
The good: At 6-foot-6 and 355 pounds, Geathers is obviously not the easiest player to move with a single blocker. He and Jenkins regularly occupied double teams and helped anchor the line this season, particularly in games against run-heavy teams like Florida, Alabama, Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech. Geathers closed the season by setting a new career high for tackles in two of the last three games, first with five tackles against Georgia Southern and then with six against Alabama.
The bad: Geathers is a disruptive run defender, but his pass-rushing skills could use some polishing. He and Jenkins recorded the same number of sacks (one), but Jenkins recorded almost twice as many quarterback hurries (14) as his position mate (eight). Geathers started four games, so he has not proven himself as a starting, every-down player -- and yet the potential to be a dominant college player is obviously there.
Crystal ball: Because of his size and his ability to defend the run and force double teams, Geathers will become an NFL draft pick whether he leaves school after this season or the next. He could improve his draft stock by returning to start for a full season and showing that he can be an every-down player, but his combination of size and skill is rare enough that he’ll show up on draft boards whenever he decides to turn pro.
19hGreg Ostendorf and Alex Scarborough