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Jamaree Salyer: 'I have no preference, I see myself as a Swiss Army knife'
Georgia offensive lineman Jamaree Salyer (69) during the Bulldogs' game with Florida in Jacksonville, Fla., on Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020. (Photo by Hannah White)
Georgia senior Jamaree Salyer is one of the more versatile guys on the offensive line.
Last season, Salyer started the first nine games at left tackle, a position in which he excelled at. With several of his teammates sitting out going into the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl, the offensive line had to be shifted and Salyer ended up left guard.
Now, heading to spring camp, the question is whether or not the former Pace Academy product will stay on the interior part of the line.
In 2020, Salyer played a five-game stretch where he was on the field for every down, which is what he did at left guard against Cincinatti. Overall, the Atlanta native played 92 percent of all offensive snaps during the regular season. It seems like the 6-foot-5, 325-pound lineman really is a jack of all trades.
“As far as last year, I think I did some great things in terms of being able to play left tackle,” Salyer added.
That being said, he did play well at left guard, too. Salyer’s versatility is huge for second-year offensive line coach Matt Luke, who is trying to put the pieces to the puzzle together before the start of the season. With spring camp already started, Luke should have a much better idea of what the bigger picture will look like come fall when the preparation for Clemson starts.
Georgia’s offensive line returns some veteran guys like Salyer and fellow senior Justin Shaffer, but there are some talented youngsters that are trying to fight for snaps and move up the depth chart as well. The two that come to mind are redshirt freshman Broderick Jones and freshman Amarius Mims, both of whom could see playing time if all goes right for them.
“That kid, you talk about someone who protects better than anybody I’ve ever seen before,” Salyer said of Jones. “He’s one of those people who’s just got it. He’s got to work on some small things. He needs to stay in the weight room, keep grinding and get the playbook down. But he’s got what it takes to be a great offensive lineman.”
Under Kirby Smart, there is always going to be competition, so don’t expect the younger guys to just waltz right in. Nevertheless, Salyer told reporters that Mims is going to something special, even if he doesn’t make an impact during his first year donning a red and black jersey.
“He comes from a good home, always smiling, always laughing,” Salyer said. “You can tell somebody taught him how to play the game the right way. He competes really hard. He’s got to learn how to practice, like all freshmen. He’s basically just through what would be his senior season in high school, so he’s still learning. But he’s got a great future. He’s one of those guys, who’s 6-foot-8 coming out of the womb. He’s got it. He’s just got to build on it.”
Even though it’s questionable where Salyer will end up, expect him to be a force to be reckoned with.
“I have no preference, I see myself as a Swiss Army knife,” Salyer said on Tuesday after UGA’s first spring practice. “I really don’t care. I’ll punt the ball. I just want the team to win. I just want to be the best teammate I can be.”