Every state player of the year in Georgia since 1986 has played on a team that has reached at least the quarterfinals in the state playoffs.
All but six have played on state championship teams.
Does that mean players on teams that have been eliminated have no chance at the award? Not necessarily. It happened in 1985 (Billy Ray of Dunwoody) and 1984 (Keith Henderson of Cartersville).
But it’s safe to say that those still playing are better positioned.
Here is our updated Player of the Year Watch:
1. QB Taylor Lamb, Calhoun: Lamb is 224-of-328 passing for 2,801 yards and 30 touchdowns with five interceptions for the No. 1-ranked team in Class AA. He has scored nine touchdowns while rushing for 302 yards on 56 carries. Lamb has committed to South Alabama.
2. QB Deshaun Watson, Gainesville: Watson is 234-of-335 passing for 3,053 yards and 41 touchdowns. He has rushed for 1,117 yards and 19 touchdowns. His team is 9-3. Watson has committed to Clemson as a junior.
3. RB Jacorey Lewis, Mill Creek: Lewis has rushed for 2,157 yards on 251 carries and scored 30 touchdowns. He has rushed for 612 yards in two playoff games despite sitting out most of the second half last week in a 56-21 victory over Brookwood. His team is 9-3. Lewis is uncommitted.
4. QB Donquell Green, Burke County: Green has rushed for 1,626 yards and 31 touchdowns and completed 79 of 115 passes for 1,202 yards and nine touchdowns with only one interception. Burke is 11-1 and ranked No. 3 in Class AAAA.
5. RB Alvin Kamara, Norcross: Kamara has rushed for 1,784 yards and 23 touchdowns on 217 carries. His team is the only unbeaten team in Class AAAAAA at 12-0. Kamara, the top-rated running back in Georgia according to some, is uncommitted.
6. RB Travis Custis, Lovejoy: Custis has rushed for 1,629 yard on 199 carries and scored 30 touchdowns for an 11-1 team that is one of three region champions left in the Class AAAAAA draw. Custis has committed to Georgia Tech.
7. RB Chris Jordan, Thomson: Jordan has rushed for 1,970 yards and 20 touchdowns on 221 carries for a team that is 12-0 and ranked No. 1 in Class AAA. Jordan has committed to Georgia Southern.
8. QB Malcolm Parrish, Brooks County: Parrish has thrown for 2,856 yards and 29 touchdowns. He also has rushed for almost 700 yards and scored 15 touchdowns. Brooks County is 12-0 and ranked No. 2 in Class AA.
9. DB/WR/RB Vonn Bell, Ridgeland: Bell has rushed for 922 yards on 67 carries and scored 12 touchdowns. He has caught 14 passes for 517 yards and six touchdowns. He has made 62 solo tackles on defense and intercepted three passes. His team is 11-1. A preseason AJC Super 11 pick, Bell is uncommitted.
10. QB Makail Grace, Wilcox County: Grace is 182-of-299 passing for 2,702 yards and 25 touchdowns with 10 interceptions. He has rushed for 736 yards and scored 12 touchdowns on 139 carries. Grace has played only 10 games. Wilcox County is 9-2. Grace is uncommitted.
Others to watch: QB Michael Haynes, North Gwinnett; DL Montravius Adams, Dooly County; QB Tyler Queen, North Cobb; WR Demarcus Robinson, Peach County; RB/CB J.J. Green, Camden County
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