Isaiah Wynn doesn’t fit the prototype of today’s left tackle.
Just look at Georgia’s recent recruiting at the position. In the 2017 recruiting class, Andrew Thomas is 6-foot-5 and 320 pounds, and Isaiah Wilson is 6-foot-7 and 345 pounds. In the upcoming class of 2018, five-star tackle Cade Mays is 6-foot-6 and 318 pounds.
Wynn, however, is 6-foot-2 and 302 pounds. Yet Wynn has, once again, proven to be Georgia’s best lineman. At his height and size, he is considered undersized for the position. That hasn’t stopped him from taking care of quarterback Jake Fromm’s blindside against some of the SEC’s best pass rushers.
To be able to handle big defenders at his own size, Wynn said he uses his athleticism to compensate for his size, or lack thereof.
“I think it definitely speaks volumes,” Wynn said. “It shows I can do it all. I’m just looking forward to continuing that success in this game and hopefully a next game.”
Wynn earned AP first-team All-SEC and AP second-team All-America honors for his performance this season. But this has been the first season Wynn has started and finished a season at left tackle. Before his sophomore season, Wynn was given a tryout at center but ended up playing the first eight games at left guard. He started the final five at left tackle, however.
In 2016, Wynn moved back to left guard but did start the Liberty Bowl win over TCU at left tackle. This season, Wynn has started every game at left tackle.
“I definitely became versatile,” Wynn said. “I’m pretty much able to play any position the team needs me on the line. I just became a very versatile player.”
It’s no surprise to Wynn’s teammates that he has been the unifying force on Georgia’s offensive line. Running back Nick Chubb said Wynn deserves a lot of credit for Georgia being in a position to play Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl.
Without Wynn, Chubb said, Georgia might not be in the College Football Playoff at all.
“It’s amazing, he’s not the biggest or tallest but he can do anything pretty much better than anything else. I never question his size.” Chubb said. “The kid has heart. He plays hard every single game. Without him, it would be a totally different season. We’re very thankful for him and grateful.”
Earlier this week, multiple Oklahoma defenders expressed the need to place pressure on quarterback Jake Fromm so that he is unable to set up for his downfield throws. A big part of the reason Fromm has only been sacked 14 times has been due to Wynn’s ability to help keep his pocket clean.
This is a trait that jumped out to Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops on tape, regardless of how tall or heavy Wynn is.
“He’s built for a guard but his athleticism, he wouldn’t be able to do that if he weren’t very athletic,” Stoops said. “It tells you how athletic he is. His ability to play at that height – you usually want guys who are 6-5 or better out there at tackle. Obviously they felt he gave them the best opportunity for success. His ability to come off the ball and protect the quarterback has been a big part of their success.”
When Georgia and Oklahoma line up against one another Monday, Wynn will look to keep Fromm upright once again. While the skill position players earn much of the glory, Wynn has done a lot of dirty work to put Georgia’s offense in a position to be successful.
“He’s just an awesome football player,” Fromm said. “He comes in and works every day. He’s so quick, so strong. Isaiah Wynn, he’s probably one of the best left tackles in the country. I’m extremely thankful he’s on my team and protecting my backside.”