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Updates on Pappoe and Puckett


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Auburn DC Jeff Schmedding updates on Owen Pappoe and Zion Puckett

By Nubyjas Wilborn | nwilborn@al.com
2-3 minutes

Auburn defensive coordinator Jeff Schmedding expressed confidence that linebacker Owen Pappoe and defensive back Zion Puckett will be ready to participate when the Tigers reconvene on the Plains in two weeks for workouts. Pappoe and Puckett will start prep unencumbered for the season-opener against Mercer on September 3rd at Jordan-Hare.

Schmedding and a member of Auburn’s 2010 national championship team/secondary coach Zac Etheridge addressed a crowd of over 200 people during a dinner for the Middle Georgia Auburn alumni chapter. The first-year Auburn defensive coordinator said that Pappoe and Puckett would participate fully in football activities starting on May 30th at the team’s facility in Auburn.

“They’re coming along well,” Schmedding told AL.Com after the event. “We’re excited. They’re gonna be full go when we have our team meetings to get ready for the summer phase of our program. We’re excited that neither of them has to miss anything else.”

Puckett played in 10 games last season at safety and made nine starts. He finished the 2021 season with 48 tackles, including a career-high 10 in the loss against eventual national champion Georgia at Jordan-Hare.

Puckett missed the Birmingham Bowl with a shoulder injury. He participated in 7-on-7 and position drills in spring camp that ended with the A-Day game. Puckett didn’t do contact drills during the 15 practices that made up spring football.

Pappoe struggled with an injury he suffered against Penn State last season. He had 23 tackles in 5 games during the 6-7 2021 season. He also didn’t participate in contact drills during spring football.

Auburn has to replace leading tackler Zakoby McClain and team captain Chandler Wooten on the linebacking core and Smoke Monday at safety. Getting a healthy Puckett and a healthy Pappoe is essential for a squad to compete in the Southeastern Conference.

Nubyjas Wilborn covers Auburn for Alabama Media Group.

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