Kirby Smart updates progress of AD Mitchell, Arik Gilbert heading into Georgia Tech

Georgia has been without star wide receiver AD Mitchell for most of the season at this point, as he’s taken just five snaps since the end of the Oregon game.

The wide receiver has been a constant topic for head coach Kirby Smart. Mitchell’s status for Saturday’s game against Georgia Tech is once again in question as Smart commented on Mitchell’s availability.

“He’s practiced some. He’s been out there to take some reps and things,” Smart said. “He took a few today, I wouldn’t say that he’s 100%, I wouldn’t even day that he’s close to playing, but he’s done more this week than he has any other week. He’s closer than he’s ever been, so I’m hopeful.”

It’s the second-straight season where the availability of a wide receiver has become a season-long storyline, as Georgia dealt with something similar with George Pickens in 2021. Pickens tore his ACL in March and was able to rehab in time following his surgery. Pickens made his season debut against Georgia Tech last year before playing a key role in games against Alabama and Michigan.

Mitchell’s initial injury wasn’t as severe as Pickens’. But the ankle injury wasn’t bad enough to require a tightrope surgery that many football players have gotten in recent years, such as Tua Tagovailoa, Cooper Kupp of the Los Angeles Rams and even fellow Bulldog Arian Smith.

The downside of the no-surgery route is that the injury has continued to linger and stall Mitchell’s progress time-and-time again.

“To have a tightrope, you have to have a certain kind of injury,” Smart said. “When they go to MRI scan it, you got to have something floating around in there. He does not have that. It wouldn’t have helped him, it was a different deal. So when you get the tightrope, you got to have a certain kind of high ankle sprain, it has to tear completely off, his was not that way. His was a grade one-plus, or a grade two I think it was, and you have to have a worse than that in order to have the tightrope.”

Georgia did get good injury news as it relates to Tate Ratledge. Smart said the right guard has been practicing this week and that it will not be a question as to if he plays but how much.

The Georgia head coach also provided an update on redshirt sophomore Arik Gilbert. The tight end did not make the trip to Kentucky this past weekend. It does not appear to be injury related as for why he did not travel after doing so for the game against Mississippi State

“He’s doing well,” Smart said. “He continues to grow. We’re just trying to help Arik as a person and a student right now.”

Gilbert has two receptions on the season for 16 yards and a touchdown, all coming in Georgia’s win over Vanderbilt.

The Bulldogs take on Georgia Tech this Saturday in Athens, with the game set for a 12 pm ET kickoff.

Kirby Smart updates status of AD Mitchell, Arik Gilbert

Georgia football injury report for Georgia Tech

  • Andrew Paul (knee out)
  • CJ Washington (neck, out)
  • Dan Jackson (foot out)
  • Earnest Greene (back, out)
  • Drew Bobo (labrum, out)
  • CJ Smith (ankle, doubtful)
  • Nolan Smith (Pec, out)
  • AD Mitchell (ankle, questionable)
  • De’Nylon Morrissette (knee/hamstring, questionable)
  • Tate Ratledge (shoulder, probable)

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