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We all make assumptions based on the information we have at hand.

And based on the information we had at hand this summer this is what most of us thought about the Georgia Bulldogs of 2022.

Georgia, the defending national champions lost 15—count ‘em 15—players to the NFL Draft. Five of those—all defensive players—were taken in the first round.

The Georgia defense of 2021 was one for the ages, giving up only 10.2 points per game.

Quarterback Stetson Bennett IV, the MVP of the CFP semifinals and national championship game, would be called on to do even more. Could “The Mail Man” deliver on that request?

Then there was Alabama, which is hungry and mad after losing to Georgia in the national championship game last January. Could Georgia hang with a Nick Saban team that is so motivated?

Put it all together and Georgia looked like a very good team but maybe not quite good enough to win another national championship.

Well, based on Georgia’s first three games, I’ve had a change of heart. Georgia might—I said MIGHT—actually be better than the Bulldogs were last year.

Let’s look at the results after three games.

Georgia opened the season with a 49-3 win against an Oregon team picked to contend for the Pac-12 championship. The first reaction was to assume that Oregon was overrated. But the Ducks have since beaten Eastern Washington (70-14) and BYU (41-20)

Then Georgia beat FCS team Samford 33-0. I’ll just say that it’s rare that a Chris Hatcher team gets shut out.

Last Saturday Georgia won 48-7 at South Carolina. And South Carolina’s touchdown –the only one allowed by the Georgia defense so far-came with 53 seconds left against a Georgia defense made up of No. 2 and No. 3 players.

Georgia’s 41-point margin of victory against South Carolina was the largest in the history of the series (75 games).

Georgia had 547 total yards despite the fact that quarterback Stetson Bennett (284 yards passing) did not take a snap in the fourth quarter.

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Here’s the thing. I’ve seen a lot of good Georgia teams go to Columbia and struggle. It’ s just a tough place to play. But Georgia never gave South Carolina—a bowl team last season—a chance to breathe. The Bulldogs were cold-blooded in their efficiency.

Georgia has been so impressive that, after starting the season at No. 3 in most human polls, the Bulldogs have jumped over Alabama and Ohio State into the No. 1 spot.

ABC’s Todd Blackledge covered Georgia’s games with Oregon and South Carolina. Color him impressed.

“It’s still early. We’re still in the month of September but my takeaway is that they are really, really good,” said Blackledge, when we talked on the phone on Tuesday. “They are playing a lot of younger, different guys. But to this point it doesn’t look like it’s a problem. You can see what good recruiting looks like.”

The thing that has impressed Blackledge the most has been, despite the number of young players in the lineup, Georgia has played relatively error-free.

“And if an opponent makes a mistake, Georgia usually makes them pay,” said Blackledge.

“And personally, despite the losses from last year, they potentially have more weapons and ways to attack you.”

Blackledge, like everyone else, is impressed with the matchup problems presented by Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett and tight end Brock Bowers.

“He’s (Bowers) unique. He has a big body but he also has elite receiving skills,” said Blackledge. “And when you hand him the ball he looks like a running back.”

SEC Network commentator Paul Finebaum says that Smart, who served under Alabama’s Nick Saban for 11 seasons, has transformed Georgia into a program that looks and plays like Alabama at its best.

“In many ways Georgia is the new Alabama,” Finebaum said on a SportsCenter appearance. “Why is that so? Well, for a number of reasons. They look like the Alabama teams that Nick Saban had (a few) years ago when Kirby Smart was defensive coordinator. I’m not ruling Alabama out as they’re still a very good team, but they have holes. They have deficiencies.

“Georgia doesn’t. They look like the perfect team.”

Despite all those guys in the NFL, the defense looks like it hasn’t missed a step. Georgia had three players on the preseason All-SEC defense—DL Jalen Carter, LB Nolan Smith, and DB Kelee Ringo. Those are three pretty good ones to build around. Only Alabama (225.3 ypg) has given up fewer than Georgia’s 249.0 per game.

Despite the impressive start, there are still places where Georgia could struggle down the stretch. Georgia hosts Tennessee on Nov. 5, the Saturday after the Bulldogs play Florida in Jacksonville. Then they go to Mississippi State. Then they go to Kentucky on Nov. 19 in a game that could be for the SEC East title.

“Thus far they haven’t been challenged but that’s not their fault,” said Blackledge. “Like I said. Georgia is just a really good football team”