Next year's team

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4 hours ago, thaitopher said:

I think a big reason for this is Gus builds the offense around his QB and most years we have had a new starter at QB from the previous years. If Stidham stays, Gus already knows what he has so hopefully won't need to tinker as much at the beginning of the season as he has in year's past. The biggest challenge next year will be finding the right combo on the O line. 

yep, 2014 was the only year Gus has had a returning legit #1 QB. We started 5-0 that year and averaged 42 points per game in that stretch which included averaging 43 points per SEC game so it wasn't just piling on some cupcake OOC teams.

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I think any concern on the DL is overblown. Jeff is a game changer, but with or without him, that line is going to be ridiculous. Let’s say he goes pro. This is what you’d have next year:

DE - Coe/Bryant

DT - Russell/Truesdell

DT - Brown/Williams/Newkirk

DE - Davidson/Moultry (he’s never moving back to true LB)/James

That doesn’t factor in any incoming freshman like Miller or Jibunor. It doesn’t account for development by Manning or Jackson. Garner’s group is loaded. If Holland comes back, flip Coe yo a backup role behind Davidson. And remember Marlon won’t be wearing that crazy brace next year. He should get full range of motion back with rehab in the off-season. 

The LBs don’t concern me either. Deshaun, Darrell, Old Man Atkinson, and McBryde are a talented and experienced base. I’ve liked glimpses of Britt and Wooten. We played a chunk of this season without Tre (our best LB). We’ll be better for it next year. 

CB feels pretty solid. If Carlton is back, this is a team strength. If not, Dean and Javaris Davis look really good when healthy. Dinson is a solid nickel CB. I liked Leonard early in the year. Broussard has potential if he gains weight. Then you have Myers and Askew waiting in the wings with Tutt and any other signee. If we go after Keith Washington you’d expect him to be in the rotation at minimum. 

Safety is suspect, obviously. Peters and Thomas are favorites to start. Dinson probably slides back some. We’re counting on Monday and Sherwood (both EEs) being rotation caliber depth. If they are, we should be in good shape depth-wise, but young Safeties can be cringe-inducing no matter how talented. This is the group that will force Coach Brown to earn his paycheck. 

This is going to be a good defense next year. Steele and his guys have built a sturdy foundation. 

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