Auburn opens spring practice for the 2017 football season on Tuesday, Feb. 28. Each day until then, we’re going to preview one position group.

Up first, coach Rodney Garner’s group: The defensive line.

Lost: DE Carl Lawson, DT Montravius Adams, DT Devaroe Lawrence, DT Maurice Swain Jr.

Returning: DE Marlon Davidson, DE Jeff Holland, DE Nick Coe, DE Paul James III, DE Byron Cowart, DT Dontavius Russell, DT Derrick Brown, DT Andrew Williams, DT Antwuan Jackson Jr.

Newcomers for spring: DT Tashawn Manning

Coming in the fall: DE Markaviest Bryant, DT Alec Jackson, DT Tyrone Truesdell

Outlook: There’s no question that Auburn will again have plenty of depth along the defensive line. Davidson (2 ½ sacks) and Russell are both returning starters on the right side of the line, Holland (two sacks) was the top backup behind Lawson, Williams got reps behind Adams, and Brown got experience at both end and tackle as a freshman, so there’s experience there, too. The question is not how to replace the reps, though, but rather how to replace the playmaking ability of Lawson and Adams. Combined, that duo accounted for 54 percent of the team’s sacks (13 ½) and 45 percent of the team’s quarterback hurries (39) as well as two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, two blocked kicks and an interception. With Bryant, Alec Jackson and Truesdell — as well as linebacker T.D. Moultry, who could play some buck — not joining the Tigers until the fall, this spring will be huge for end Coe and tackle Antwuan Jackson Jr., who are two former four-star commits who redshirted in 2016 and could put themselves in a position to make an impact in 2017.