Bailey Returns

ATHENS – For most of Sean Bailey's career at Georgia he was in the shadows of Reggie Brown and Fred Gibson. This spring, however, the spotlight has never been on him more.

Bailey returns after sitting out 2006 recovering from an ACL injury he suffered during Sugar Bowl practices in December of 2005. The injury left the Bulldogs thin at wide receiver, with no proven pass catcher to go to.

Now Bailey is back, and it couldn't have come at a better time.

"He has looked good," quarterback Matthew Stafford said before spring practices began. "We have thrown a couple of times in the last couple of weeks. I think he's 100% ready to go. He's a good deep-threat weapon for us."

That's something the Bulldogs lacked last season. Kenneth Harris was able to stretch the field at times, but without their go-to guy, Bailey, the Bulldog offense, particularly the receivers, struggled to get into rhythm.

"I would hope that he will settle back into being our depth threat. He is a very good deep-ball receiver. I don't see any reason why he can't get back in the saddle again," head coach Mark Richt said.

"He should be able to do everything. I would really love to see him come back with confidence, thinking that he's going to come back and grab a starting job," Richt added.

The head coach would have liked to see more progress last season in settling the Bulldogs' depth issues at receiver, he said.

"You would like to think that you are more settled at that spot, but we are not," he admitted.

That's why Bailey's return this spring gives the Bulldog offense a boost it so desperately needed last fall. His return during spring ball means Georgia's young offense will have time to get ready for the trials of the fall. Still, Georgia is concerned about keeping Bailey on the playing field this spring and fall.

"We have to get him to stay healthy," said offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.

Because, Bobo says, a healthy Bailey will mean an extra burst of speed for the Dawgs.

"You've seen flashes of what Sean can do over the last few years," offensive coordinator Bobo said. "I feel good about getting Sean back because he's a threat with his speed. We think he's added another level of speed for our offense. We think he's got tremendous potential."

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