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Name your top-10 skill players for 2011


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Through 5 seasons as an offensive coordinator, 84.3% of his running game has come from 4 players and 76.0% of his pass offense has been distributed among 5 players. Including the QB, that means 10 skill players will receive the bulk of the work in Gus Malzahn’s offense. With this in mind, I’ve broken down Auburn’s skill players in 4 separate categories.

The 2011 Auburn offense has 4 established skill players in Michael Dyer, Onterio McCalebb, Emory Blake and Philip Lutzenkirchen. Including the quarterback, six more players will need to step up this season to complete the offense.

Established Talent:

Michael Dyer – RB

Onterio McCalebb – RB

Emory Blake – WR

Philip Lutzenkirchen – TE

Dyer and McCalebb will now become the heart of the running game but at least 1 other RB will be needed for support. Auburn’s starting QB and the wildcat quarterback could end up being the 3rd and 4th leading rusher in terms of carries.

Emory Blake and Philip Lutzenkirchen are proven players in the pass offense but that leaves 3 slots open to fill the majority of the team’s receptions. One of those slots could go to a RB if Malzahn elects to feature the RB’s more often in the pass-offense.

On the bubble:

Barrett Trotter – QB

Clint Moseley – QB

DeAngelo Benton – WR

Quindarius Carr – WR

Trovon Reed – WR

The starting QB will likely be Trotter or Moseley but Frazier will get his chance though he won’t have much time to beat out the two veterans. If Trovon Reed can remain healthy, he could be one of the players, who supports the running game as well as the pass offense.

It would be great for Benton or Carr to step up this season with their experience in the offense. Both have a grand opportunity to make noise this season but it’s up to them to take advantage of it.

From the depth chart:

Travante Stallworth – WR

Anthony Morgan – RB

Ladarious Phillips – FB

Christopher Humphries - FB

Anthony Morgan has an opportunity to be the No. 3 back off the bench but he will get a serious push from Tre Mason. Travante Stallworth was once a rising star in the offense until he was injured. Stallworth is clearly talented enough to move up to the “on the bubble” level, especially with 3 slots open in the pass-offense.

Phillips and Humphries will be battling it out to be the FB-HB in the offense. As the starting FB-HB in the offense, they won’t likely have many offensive touches but their role in the offense will be important just as it was for Eric Smith.

New Faces:

Kiehl Frazier – QB

Tre Mason – RB

Quan Bray – WR/RB

C.J. Uzomah – TE

Brandon Fulse – TE

Sammie Coates – WR

Jaylon Denson – WR

Of the 7 true freshmen coming in from the 2011 recruiting class, all of them could end up playing in 2011. If Auburn can remain healthy, 2-3 of the above could end up red shirting. Kiehl Frazier will have an opportunity to win the starting job at QB and if he doesn’t, will the coaching staff still play him as a backup or in a specialized role as a situational quarterback?

Tre Mason will have a grand opportunity to play in 2011 if he can move up to No. 3 on the depth chart. With his size, speed and athletic ability, Mason could support either Dyer or McCalebb. C.J. Uzomah or Brandon Fulse will likely be the No. 2 TE, which means no red shirting. Uzomah could see action as the Wildcat QB, increasing his role in the offense and his chances of playing as a true freshman.

It would be great to red shirt Sammie Coates and Jaylon Denson but Auburn doesn’t have a lot of depth at the WR position. One of them will likely see playing time in 2011, even if it’s primarily on special teams.

Who are your top-10 skill players for 2011?

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1. Dyer

2. McCalebb

3. Lutzenkirchen

4. Reed (yes, I know he's only played two snaps)

5. Blake

6. Benton (call me crazy, I think he finally comes out this year)

7. Carr

8. Fulse

9. Stallworth

10. Bray

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Excepting the 4 known quantities:

5) QB (Trotter/Mosely)

6) Mason

7) Bray

8) Carr

9) Benton

10) Morgan

-I echoed Stat's sentiments about Stallworth in a similar thread awhile back, and I won't be surprised if he breaks out, but I just haven't heard his name from any coaches or players recently

-I think Ladarious Phillips might be an important addition to the offense, but I doubt he'll get the touches to be considered a "top-10 skill player"

-Coates is going to be a star, but I think his reps will be a bit limited this season due to our need to maximize what little experience we have

-Sidenote: how incredibly important was that last-minute pickup of Emory Blake 2 yrs ago? Hopefully Benton got a little jealous over the summer and we'll be able to say the same about him by midseason.

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I'll keep the established four then go with:

5. Quan Bray - he has this knack for finding the seam. Excellent vision and the moves to go with it. He'll probably see more time returning kicks and punts this year.

6. Sammie Coates - watch this kid..he's special and will go places. I saw him run rampant in the the 3A championship game. I expect he'll contribute a lot on KR/PR as well.

7. Tre Mason - if he's given the ball, he will shine.

8. Kiehl Frazier - I think he will be our wildcat QB and, dare I say it, possibly a starter even as a true freshman. We have tons of talent coming in with ZP and I don't really see Malzahn squandering either of them on a two-QB system.

9. CJ Uzomah - I expect him to offset Lutz more so than Fulse.

10. Travante Stallworth - If he can remain healthy, watch out. One of the best route receivers I have seen since Frank Sanders.

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1. Dyer - he's the workhorse of the offense now

2. Blake - I think he'll be considered a legit WR1 by season's end

3. Trotter/Moseley - I think it'll be Trotter, but I don't think it will be Frazier

4. Lutz - I keep hearing he's working hard... hope it shows

5. McCalebb - I'm betting he gets used in the passing game as well

6. Reed - he'll factor in more as a receiver than runner

7. Benton - this is a guess... I don't think Carr and Benton will be on this list together

8. Bray - similar to Reed, but more of a 50/50 contribution

9. Morgan then Mason - I think Anthony gets the carries early with Tre getting them late

10. Frazier - he's either your Wildcat QB package or a redshirt

Just walking through that exercise... this offense is going to look very, very different than last year's offense.

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Just walking through that exercise... this offense is going to look very, very different than last year's offense.


But I trust Gus. :big:

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McCallebb Size, speed, alot of potential here.

Dyer He will be a btw the tackles runner, he is basically tied with McCallebb in my book.


Phillips Scary athlete

Reed alot of promise

Trotter Gonna be really good

Blake Clutch

Bray potential

Carr potential

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is it possible to have first real 3 back tandem since ronnie,caddy and jacobs in dyer,McCaleb and Phillips. i want to see Phillips run over some folks like jacobs use to that one year.

Beyond those 3, lutz and blake



Winner of QB battle



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I don't see Phillips as a threat outside of our Cam package in short yardage situations.

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I don't see Phillips as a threat outside of our Cam package in short yardage situations.

He's already shown he can catch out of the backfield. Can very easily see him being used on screens and bootlegs.

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Outside of the established four and QB I have:

5. Reed

6. Bray

7. Benton

8. Carr

9. Stallworth

10. Insert running back here.

I feel that Reed will take over one of the "established four" spots next year. Kid gets praise from everybody and is tallented above most other receivers on our team.

Bray has already been given the go ahead for playing time, I just hope he can overcome what happend off the field.

There is so much tallent and potential on the offensive side of the ball that it is tough to say for sure. I would love to do the same for the defense... wouldn't be so difficult.

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I'm expecting Trotter to do an excellent job of running the offense ... not necessarily spectacular, but a not get you beat with good ball distribution skills.

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