Georgia – Eric Stokes, Defensive Back, Redshirt Junior
Georgia will be in an interesting spot this coming season. After being a pipeline for top talent at the running back position, the Bulldogs find themselves entering a season where there are multiple positions with top players that won’t be draft-eligible, meaning multiple years with the unit. However, one name that sticks out from the 2021 NFL Draft-eligible players is Eric Stokes.
A 2019 All-SEC Second Team selection, Stokes saw the biggest impact by breaking up passes. Despite not having an interception, Stokes still was able to disrupt a team-high nine pass attempts during last season. But that’s far from where his game stopped. He also was able to force five quarterback hurries, which isn’t anything to shy away from for a defensive back.
Stokes also has the ability to be a playmaker. Against Tennessee this past season he forced a fumble on a 10-yard sack that turned into a defensive touchdown. The ability to create that type of pressure while also being able to cover downfield makes for a very unique skill-set that most defensive coordinators search to add every off-season.
The big thing going for Stokes is doing it on a consistent basis, which he has already started to show. He posted nine break-ups each of the last two seasons, including a streak of five straight games during the 2018 season with at least one pass break-up.