The Return: Mitchell, Floyd and Jenkins

Next year’s senior gala will be a little more important for three seniors.

Leonard Floyd, Jordan Jenkins and Malcolm Mitchell - all of whom could have declared for the NFL Draft, and two of which were seen as gone for good not that long ago - will be coming back for their senior season.

Mark Richt made the announcement at Georgia’s annual Gala event on Saturday night.

Most insiders considered Floyd gone for sure midway through the season. But in the last week Floyd had not declared for the NFL Draft and word started trickling out that he was seriously considering coming back.

Mitchell, at the start of the season, was considered a certain goner. But as time went on the lingering effects of his ACL injury from last season seemed to be difficult to overcome. Mitchell didn’t seem in full form until November. He looked more like himself against Georgia Tech than any another time in his recovery.

Jenkins was the one player insiders thought would stay for sure. “Um, no,” said one insider midway during the season. “He’s not leaving - no way. He likes it too much.”

The return of Jenkins and Floyd give the Bulldogs a sold set of pass rushers returning to a still-growing defense. But Mitchell’s return is a major development for the offense. Mitchell was special at times before the ACL injury. The fact that he never did recover until late in the season probably had a major factor in his return.

Brice Ramsey, the likely starter in the 2015 season, would have been left with a rather green group of receivers to grow into the 2015 season with - not ideal. But Mitchell’s return gives the Bulldogs a major threat at receiver to go along with their potent running game.

This should help Ramsey’s transition into the starting spot and help the offense continue to energize the scoreboard.

The Bulldogs will return to practice on Wednesday to prepare for the Belk Bowl, which is on December 30.

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