After starting the season at cornerback to fill in for suspended defenders, on Saturday Mitchell moved back to the offense and was fairly impressive on that side of the ball.
Where he was less than impressive—much less—is on punt returns. It’s not a lack of production that should concern the Georgia coaching staff; rather it’s his decision-making as a punt returner.
Mitchell has already made some bad decisions on punt returns this season that cost Georgia yards in field position, and it only got worse on Saturday versus Tennessee.
On the first punt kicked to Mitchell, the ball had good hang time, and there was a defender planted right in front of him as he was fielding the kick. For some reason, Mitchell elected not to fair catch the punt and was rewarded with a huge hit that he was lucky didn’t result in a fumble.
Later in the game, Mitchell again failed to fair catch a ball and instead let it hit around the 15-yard line, where it rolled down to the Georgia 1-yard line before Tennessee downed it.
Mitchell is certainly a big-play threat any time he has the ball in this hands, so it makes sense that the Georgia coaching staff would want him returning punts. But until he proves he can make better decisions, UGA would be better off with someone like Damian Swann returning punts.