Null



Sign in to follow this  
aubiefifty

Braden Smith

Recommended Posts

Auburn's Braden Smith will 'start out' at right tackle this spring

Tom Green | tgreen@al.com

As Auburn tries to replace two starters along the offensive line this spring, there will be at least some movement in the trenches for the Tigers.

Senior Braden Smith, who has started 25 games at right guard over the last two seasons, will start spring working at right tackle, head coach Gus Malzahn said Tuesday.

"Braden has played tackle some in his career, and I think, obviously, he's one of the best linemen, I think, in our league," Malzahn said. "How versatile he is will help our team, and it will also help him at the next level."

Smith earned second-team All-America honors and first-team All-SEC honors last season while starting all 13 games at right guard. He has appeared in 39 games in his career, with 27 consecutive starts. All but two of those starts have come at right guard, with the other two -- against Jacksonville State in 2016 and in the Outback Bowl against Wisconsin at the end of the 2014 season -- coming at right tackle.

"I mean, since I'm a senior and all that, I've been around the program long enough," Smith said of the move to the exterior of the line. "I know the ins and outs of the system. There's a need at tackle, so I'm going to try my best to kind of work it out. Just do my best to fill the position."

 

Projected Auburn depth chart for start of spring practice

Projected Auburn depth chart for start of spring practice

Projected Auburn depth chart as the Tigers open spring practice

 

Smith acknowledged his past experience at right tackle will make the transition a little more seamless for him this spring as Auburn tries to replace Robert Leff, who started all 13 games at the position last season and emerged as one of the nation's best run blockers while holding strong in pass protection, allowing just three sacks, no hits and seven hurries all season, according to Pro Football Focus.

"I mean, it's just a new spot," Smith said. "It's going to be different than guard, of course. It will be more oriented toward pass protection at that position. It's still going to be heavy run block, but I'll be going more against pass rushers, speed rushers and things like that."

With Smith starting spring out at right tackle, Malzahn said redshirt sophomore Mike Horton will have an opportunity to emerge at right guard. Horton appeared in 12 games last season, primarily as Auburn's sixth offensive lineman in the team's jumbo package -- a role once held by Smith during his freshman season in 2014.

"The great thing about Braden is he's a veteran guy," Malzahn said. "He can play anywhere but he'll start out at right tackle."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites




Great opportunity for Braden.  More signing money for OT at the next level.  Plus I think Horton and Harrel are 2 of our top 5-6 lineman and can fill in nicely at Guard

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, corchjay said:

Great opportunity for Braden.  More signing money for OT at the next level.  Plus I think Horton and Harrel are 2 of our top 5-6 lineman and can fill in nicely at Guard

He looks like a human Road-grader out there. So good to see!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While this is great for Drago, I fully expected to see one of the Princes at RT. Guess they need a bit more seasoning? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Auburn2Eugene said:

While this is great for Drago, I fully expected to see one of the Princes at RT. Guess they need a bit more seasoning? 

It's just Spring...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, lionheartkc said:

It's just Spring...

That's true. And they are both Redshirt Freshmen right? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

BY MICHAEL NIZIOLEK

mniziolek@ledger-enquirer.com

AUBURN, ALA. 

Braden Smith might have the talent to play any position on the offensive line.

Auburn is going to put that theory to the test this spring.

Smith, who has started 27 consecutive games at right guard, is auditioning to be Robert Leff’s replacement at right tackle.

“Braden looks good anywhere he is, I think,” Auburn offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey said. “He’s special player, special guy, great person, first one in the meeting room, all the intangibles are there. Just really been impressed with him.”

Lindsey gave Smith’s early work at the position a thumbs up after the team’s fourth practice — “I really like what he’s doing right now” — but Auburn coaches didn’t expect anything less from the All-SEC lineman.

“Braden has played tackle some in his career, and I think, obviously, he’s one of the best linemen, I think, in our league,” Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said. “How versatile he is will help our team, and it will also help him at the next level.”

Smith could have been one of the top prospects at guard in this year’s NFL draft if he left Auburn early, but the Kansas native came back for his senior season because he thought the program had a “shot to do something special” and the soft-spoken lineman is leading the way.

“There’s a need at tackle, so I’m going to try my best to kind of work it out,” Smith said. “Just do my best to fill the position.”

Smith acknowledged there will be challenges to the transition but views Auburn’s 15 spring practices as a way to work through the growing pains.

“I mean, it’s just a new spot,” Smith said. “It’s going to be different than guard, of course. It will be more oriented toward pass protection at that position. It’s still going to be heavy run block, but I’ll be going more against pass rushers, speed rushers and things like that.”

Smith also has to adapt to the changes Lindsey is making to the offense.

“It’s a little bit different with the terminology,” Smith said. “It’s a little bit different with the wrinkles that are going in. But, I mean, basically, he’s trying to get that all installed. I think he’s going to do really good things for the program.”


 

http://www.ledger-enquirer.com/sports/college/sec/auburn-university/war-eagle-extra/article139010013.html

Edited by aufan57
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this