Brock Bowers and Kirby Smart Georgia tight end Brock Bowers (19) celebrates with Georgia coach Kirby Smart after scoring a touchdown during the second half of a NCAA college football game against Ole Miss in Athens, Ga., on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2023. Georgia won 52-17.

Georgia Bulldogs superstar tight end Brock Bowers surprised many by returning to the field just 26 days after undergoing tight rope surgery on his ankle. And you can count Georgia head coach Kirby Smart among those surprised by how quickly he was able to get back on the field.

During his press conference on Saturday, Kirby Smart admitted that he didn’t initially have any expectations for how long it would take Brock Bowers to recover from his injury, but he was surprised to see him running at full speed so soon after surgery.

“I didn’t have an expectation for Brock. I thought Brock would do what he could,” Smart said. “Brock was hellbent to get back out there. I knew, I don’t know when it was so don’t quote me on it, but I was watching film of practice and there was a red blur back behind the play I was watching, about 20 yards behind it.

“It looked like a guy flying across the field, and I was like, ‘Who is that?’ And I was like, ‘Oh my god, it’s Brock.’ I knew we had a chance then. He’s just different. He took a path that no one takes on that injury and said, ‘This is what I’m doing.’”

Smart said that Bowers was very aggressive in his efforts to get back on the field.

“I knew it was in the realm,” Smart said. “It was a belief that he’d have to do something special. The day after it happened, his mother and father called and wanted to be aggressive with it and wanted to treat it. One of the best things for it is to get back on it, move it and not let it stiffen. We had had experience with other guys taking longer, and he took a really aggressive approach to it. He’s different.”

In his first game back, Bowers had three catches for 33 yards and a touchdown.