Projecting Ohio State's Depth Chart for the Season Opener

By Chris Lauderback on August 23, 2014 at 11:15a
Urban Meyer may be without Braxton Miller, but there's talent everywhere else on the roster.
52 Comments
Eleven Warriors' 2014 Ohio State Football Season Preview

Exactly one week away from taking on the Navy Midshipmen in Baltimore to kick off the 2014 season, Urban Meyer and staff are still working to put the finishing touches on the two-deep depth chart. 

Upon welcoming a new co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach in Chris Ash along with assistant head coach and defensive line overlord Larry Johnson, the effort to replace four starters and seven letter winners began in earnest. 

On offense, the task was even taller as the Buckeyes lost 10 letter winners and six starters including their leading rusher and receiver along with the bulk of arguably Ohio State's best offensive line in school history. As you may have heard, the project of retooling the offense's two-deep became that much harder with the season-ending shoulder injury to Heisman hopeful Braxton Miller a mere five days ago and just 12 days before kick off. 

Despite the attrition, both planned and of the blind-sided variety, Meyer now has three of his own recruiting classes to draw from and the cupboard looks to be far from bare. The rub is that a solid chunk of the talent vying for playing time is unproven at the collegiate level which means that even when the staff settles on a two-deep for Navy, you can expect to see changes as the non-conference season unfolds. For now, however, here's a look at how things might shake out, starting with the offense. 

QUARTERBACK

With the loss of the league's offensive MVP two years running, Meyer and offensive coordinator Tom Herman will hand the keys to redshirt freshman J.T. Barrett. Interestingly, they'll do so mere days after announcing he had passed up redshirt sophomore Cardale Jones out of Cleveland Glenville on the depth chart, ready to serve as Miller's backup. 

Projected Offensive Two-Deep
POS STARTER BACKUP
QB BARRETT JONES
RB ELLIOTT SMITH
LT DECKER DODSON
LG HALE –OR–  PRICE/UNDERWOOD
C BOREN –OR– LINDSAY
RG ELFLEIN FARRIS
RT BALDWIN LISLE
TE HEUERMAN VANNETT
H-B WILSON MARSHALL
WR D. SMITH C. SMITH
WR M. THOMAS –OR– E. SPENCER

Now, the Wichita Falls, Texas product will get first crack when the Buckeyes take the field next Saturday. The good news is that the kid who has yet to throw a collegiate pass and hasn't played competitive football since right before he shredded his ACL in October of his senior year of high school has shown a consistent ability in practice to move the offense. Herman and Meyer have both talked about Barrett's skills as a "distributor" which is good to hear because he lacks the speed and jukes (who doesn't) of Miller nor does he have a cannon for an arm. In addition to showing a knack for facilitation, Barrett has drawn rave reviews for his efforts in the leadership department with Meyer even inventing the word "Guitonish" for description purposes. Color me intrigued. 

At the ready should Barrett falter is Jones, the 6'5", 250 lb. Pryor-molded kid who didn't come to play school. Word is Jones has matured a great deal since his ill-fated comment though one has to wonder his mental state following an untimely demotion following 15 practices with the ones. From  skill-set perspective, Jones didn't get to show much last year as his spot-duty occurred with OSU routing opponents. In fact, he attempted just three passes, completing one, while typically handing off or keeping up the middle. 

Meyer lightly suggested he could use two quarterbacks this year but the hope is that one or the other is good enough to seize the job. 

RUNNING BACK

Gone is Carlos Hyde and his 1,521 rushing yards and 18 total touchdowns. Combined with the loss of Braxton's 1,068 rushing yards, Ohio State must replace 60% of last year's rushing offense. It's not likely they'll achieve such lofty totals in 2014 but that doesn't mean the cupboard is empty. 

Checking in at a 6'0", 225 lbs., true sophomore Ezekiel Elliott is poised to start the season at tailback despite undergoing minor surgery on his left wrist exactly two weeks ago. Though it's a small sample size, Elliott looked the part as a freshman as he averaged 8.7 yards per carry (30 attempts) with a pair of touchdowns. Even if Elliott picks up where he left off, there's reason to believe the offensive brain trust will share the rushing work load to both keep Elliott fresh and take advantage of a stable of talented backs. 

Fifth-year senior Rod Smith has been far more hype than substance during his rocky career in Columbus but facing a now or never situation seems to have had a positive effect on the 6'3", 231 lb. beast out of Fort Wayne, Indiana. Interestingly, Smith enters the season with more games, rushes, yards and touchdowns than any back on the team and in 83 career carries, only one has gone for negative yardage. Still, while Smith appears to have first dibs on the 2nd-string role, his spot is far from secure. 

On Smith's heels is the tandem of redshirt sophomore Bri'onte Dunn and true freshman Curtis Samuel. Dunn has also shown a tendency to get in his own way but you have to love his ability to run between the tackles, something that could elevate him on the depth chart as the league play begins and the weather turns cold. Samuel, a product of Brooklyn, New York, stole Urban's heart back in spring ball and could potentially see some snaps at H-back especially if carries from the tailback slot become scarce. For a guy standing just 5'11" with ridiculous quicks, Samuel is more powerful than he looks and has also drawn praise for his toughness. While he might not be a featured player in 2014, it's realistic to think it's just a matter of time. Meanwhile, it seems a good bet DeSales product and all-around great kid Warren Ball is once again on the outside looking in. 

OFFENSIVE LINE

With Ed Warriner forced to replace four starters from last year's group, it's no surprise two spots are still up for grabs. 

Taylor Decker moves from right to left tackle.

Returning starter Taylor Decker is the unquestioned leader of the line but even he is going through a transition as junior from Vandalia moves from right to left tackle. Indications out of camp are that he's settled into the role nicely but the responsibility of protecting the quarterback's blind side is still new. Another spot currently accounted for is right guard, which belongs to redshirt sophomore Pat Elflein. The Pickerington North product filled in admirably for Marcus Hall after his double-bird salute in Ann Arbor and backed that up with a strong performance against Michigan State in the B1G Championship. At right tackle, senior Darryl Baldwin has won the starting job ahead of redshirt frosh Even Lisle. 

At left guard, the trio of senior Joel Hale, redshirt freshman Billy Price and redshirt junior Antonio Underwood continue to battle. At times, Warriner and Meyer have touted all three so a rotation in the first game or two could be needed to for a true starter to emerge. For now, my guess is Hale gets the first shot a week from today with strongman Price the next in line. 

At center, the competition is also fierce with junior Jacoby Boren and senior transfer Chad Lindsay vying for the starting gig. Lindsay left Nick Saban's program for a chance to start after earning just four starts over the course of three seasons in Tuscaloosa while Boren is a legacy who has been groomed for the position. While no definitive starter has been named as of yet, my gut says Boren will run out with the starters in Baltimore though an early rotation of sorts could be a reality. Price has also seen practice time at center though it's unlikely he'll end up there. 

Names like Kyle Dodson, Chase Farris, Jamarco Jones, Demetrius Knox and Brady Taylor provide additional depth up front. 

RECEIVERS & TIGHT ENDS

Ohio State is loaded at tight end with senior captain-to-be Jeff Heuerman, junior Nick Vannett and freshman Marcus Baugh. 

Coming off the best season by a tight end since Ricky Dudley in 1995, Heuerman needs just 383 receiving yards to move into 2nd place on the school's all-time list for tight ends behind Bruce Janikowski. Stuck in Heuerman's shadow to a degree, Vannett is good enough for Ohio State to sport one of the best tight end duos in the country and Baugh, while green and likely a year away from contributing, is a four-star out of California. 

The rest of the receiving corps is equally loaded with talent however much of it is unproven. The lone receiver that has truly earned his stripes is senior Devin Smith who is coming off a 44 catch, 660 yard, eight touchdown season that saw him both dazzle and disappear though some of his ghostly ways can be attributed to Braxton's rocky final five games of the season through the air coupled with Meyer/Herman buttoning up the offense over that same span. 

Who joins Smith as a starter at wideout is not yet carved in stone, nor will it matter much considering Zach Smith has enough weapons that he'll want to rotate guys in an effort to find his best pair. For now, my guess is Evan Spencer may be on the field for the first snap against Navy but over the course of first few weeks, Michael Thomas should cement a starting role. Thomas frustratingly took a redshirt last year but considering his size and hands outdo Spencer's strong blocking ability, the time might be now for Thomas to make his move. 

Corey Smith and Johnnie Dixon might be next in line but make no mistake it's a crowded one as 6'5" Jeff Greene could also work his way into the fold though it might be tougher for names like freshmen James Clark, Parris Campbell and Noah Brown. 

At the oft-discused H-back position, Dontre Wilson has a firm grasp on the starting spot but Jalin Marshall should get a chance to show what he can do. Curtis Samuel looks to be a running back first but as noted, if things get too crowded there and Meyer is set on getting him touches, they could come from the slot. So, basically what I'm saying is holy smokes there is loads of unproven talent just dying to compete for snaps. 

Now that we've weaved our way through the offensive spots, we turn our attention to a defense looking to reestablish themselves as the Silver Bullets. 

DEFENSIVE LINE

The unquestioned strength of the team, the defensive line is loaded with stars and depth, so much so that most pundits are calling them the best d-line in the land. 

PROJECTED DEFENSIVE TWO-DEEP
POS STARTER BACKUP
VIPER SPENCE MILLER
DT BENNETT CARTER
NT WASHINGTON SCHUTT
DE BOSA LEWIS
WLB PERRY JOHNSON
MLB C. GRANT MCMILLAN
WALKOUT LEE WORLEY
SAF BELL BURROWS
SAF POWELL TANNER
CB D. GRANT G. CONLEY
CB A. REEVES –OR– E. APPLE

In the middle, 6'2", 288 lb. senior Michael Bennett out of Centerville will be paired alongside 6'4", 295 lb. junior Adolphus Washington in the starting lineup. Bennett placed 4th in TFL and 3rd in sacks on the unit a year ago while Washington was a bit of a disappointment finishing with 4.0 TFL and 2.0 sacks though he was often nicked up. Tommy Schutt has come on of late and projects to figure prominently in the inside rotation with Chris Carter and Michael Hill also poised to contribute. 

On the outside, returning starter Joey Bosa is already a star after a stellar freshman campaign (13.5 TFL, 7.5 sacks, team-leading 6 QBH) and junior Noah Spence is a beast in his own right coming off 14.5 TFL and eight sacks a season ago. Of course, Spence is suspended for the first two games paving the way for seniors Steve Miller and Rashad Frazier to see increased time with Jalyn Holmes looking to earn some snaps of his own at the viper spot. Behind Bosa, redshirt frosh Tyquan Lewis is making a case for playing time. 

Coach Johnson has said he's focused on using a deep rotation and it clearly looks like he's got more than enough talent to wear down offensive lines. 

LINEBACKERS

The position group that has taken the most flak during Urban's short tenure, Meyer now considers the linebackers a unit of strength. While I love the depth, I'm not personally as bullish on this group largely because I need to see starting middle linebacker Curtis Grant take the next step and complement weakside starter Josh Perry, while also wanting to see what sophomore walkout linebacker Darron Lee can bring to the table. Again, I see the potential of the trio and love that Perry and Grant have so much experience but until they consistently produce on game day, I'm sticking to being cautiously optimistic. Their chances of living up to Meyer's billing certainly go up playing behind that monster defensive line. 

That said, you have to be giddy about the depth Meyer has brought in with all-world freshman Raekwon McMillan pushing Grant for time, redshirt freshman Chris Worley on Lee's heels and the duo of sophomore Trey Johnson and junior Camren Williams still in the fold. None of this even mentions future contributors in freshmen Dante Booker and Joe Burger. 

SECONDARY

The weakest link of last year's Bullets, the secondary has been completely retooled with the installation of Chris Ash's more aggressive pass defense and the loss of Bradley Roby, C.J. Barnett and Christian Bryant. 

Doran Grant posted 10 PBU and 3 INT in 2013

Of the two corner spots, one is locked down by senior Doran Grant who should challenge for all-league honors while redshirt sophomore Tyvis Powell is a definite starter at one of the two safety spots. Of the returning players, Grant is the 2nd leading tackler and Powell the 5th. 

Opposite Grant, my hope is Eli Apple earns the first chance to start. I love the kid's frame (6'1", 198) and after Armani Reeves was scorched more than a handful of times in coverage, I felt the staff could have used the former five-star out of New Jersey last season.  Speaking of Reeves, he's certainly in the mix at corner or nickel and the fact the staff saw fit to play him so much last year says plenty about his potential. Meanwhile, redshirt frosh Gareon Conley is the third guy in the mix to pair with Grant as this position battle will likely rage into the first month of the season. 

At safety, Vonn Bell looks to be the odds on favorite to start with Powell but Cam Burrows will at least spell both players if he doesn't earn a starting job. If not for the curious decision last year to continue running an overmatched Pitt Brown out there, Bell would be much further along in his development though he could still be on the verge of a breakout season. Ron Tanner offers additional depth but a three-man rotation of Bell, Powell and Burrows is the most logical scenario. 

SPECIAL TEAMS

When you talk Ohio State special teams, you have to start with Australian punter Cameron Johnston. As a freshman who joined the squad last summer, Johnston lead the country in percent of punts downed inside the 20 and finished 2nd in the league with a 44.0 average yards per punt. Because of his skill, Ohio State only had the opportunity to tackle a punt returner seven times all year. 

As solid as the punter situation is, the placekicking job remains up in the air as senior walk-on Kyle Clinton does battle with freshman hotshot Sean Nuernberger. The prevailing thought is Nuernberger wins the job while also serving as backup punter while Clinton could potentially handle kickoff duties. 

In the return game, things are still fairly murky although it's seems a good bet Dontre Wilson will return kickoffs alongside maybe Jalin Marshall, Curtis Samuel, Johnnie Dixon or Mashon Lattimore. Marshall and Wilson are also likely front runners on punt returns. 

52 Comments

Comments

WesPatterson23's picture

I like to think that Erick Smith is backing up Powell, but it looks like I'm wrong.

+1 HS
Chris Lauderback's picture

You could be right. I've heard Smith's name in the mix too. That said, I think Burrows is really the main back up to both safety spots for now. 

Wesleyburgess1's picture

Ed Warrinor said on Sirius Xm radio that Chase Farris was the 3rd tackle. Seemed like he was referring to either side. He also said Billy Price was a top 5 guy.
Also Michael Bennett said that he is playing NT and Tommy Schutt is his back up. Just thought I would mention that. Love this article. Been waiting on this since April.

+4 HS
Stinson's picture

JT Barrett is gonna be nastyyyyyyyyyyyy. I can't wait.

"The height of human desire is what wins, whether it's on Normandy Beach or in Ohio Stadium." -Wayne Woodrow Hayes

+7 HS
HeuermanTheFireman's picture

Upvote to counter the DV

The person responsible for toes clearly wanted you to stub them.

whiskeyjuice's picture

You say you are cautiously optimistic about the linebackers. Does it make a difference that Fickell has promised that this year will have the best linebacker play in a long time?

"You'll find out that nothing that comes easy is worth a dime. As a matter of fact, I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face." -- Wayne Woodrow Hayes

-1 HS
KevinJ's picture
 

A man can only dream, but when I dream, I dream of these guys

 
+10 HS
BuckGnome's picture

Now THAT is Ohio State linebacking corps!

+1 HS
Nairion's picture

I wouldn't tell your wife that...

gumtape's picture

What I want to know is, with Guiton gone, who is the first string holder?

Not Cardale Jones, his hands are too big. Where is Vico to break this one down for us?

just another psycho, irrational, delusional Ohio St fan

+5 HS
BeatTTUN's picture

JT was holding during the Spring Game.

Go Buckeyes Beat Michigan

+2 HS
Colerainbuck's picture

mildly surprised D Webb isn't mentioned. Is he a red shirt candidate?

+1 HS
OSU069's picture

Hard to break the 2-deep as a true freshman unless you are amazing or your team has no depth at the position.

+1 HS
Habu71's picture

Love this write up, love this team, is it time for kickoff yet? Go Bucks! 

+2 HS
buckguyfan1's picture

Maybe it's because Í've/We've followed these kids since their requitment, but that 2 deep projection looks flipping AWESOME!   This next week can't pass fast enough.

+2 HS
BTBuckeye's picture

Great rundown. We got ourselves a team. Can't wait.

+2 HS
CarolinaBuck's picture

Every spring and summer we hear of at least one player, usually a incoming freshman who is setting the world on fire. This year it was Curtis Samuel. I'd be surprised if he got much playing time at all and maybe just two or three plays a game his way.

+1 HS
Ohio Guy in Jersey's picture

I think you mistook walk-on LB Joe Burger for injured freshman LB Kyle Berger.

+1 HS
Jbucks's picture

who has been taking the most reps with the 1's Apple or Reeves? also Dante Booker is someone i could see in time getting on the 2 deep, his athletic ability and raw power would be a huge lift and energy boost

Light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it-John 1:5 SEC meet Ohio State, Ohio State meet SEC

causeicouldntgo43's picture

I can see why Urban really, really likes this team, even with Brax on the sideline.

+2 HS
CCatanzaro's picture

So many weapons!!  Can't wait, T-7 Days!!

Dairy-fed intellect and pure, unhinged sass.

 

+2 HS
Vinsaniti's picture

It's good to see these battles rage on. It shows how much talent and depth. Keep up the hard work and bring home a trophy or two at the end of the year!

otrain2416's picture

I like your picks Chris, only changes I would have in my predicting are

  • Price or Underwood are going to start at LG, I think Hale will be in the mix though
  • I think in the depth chart itself second team RB will be listed Smith OR Dunn, but Smith will receive more carries
  • Hill will get more PT and be ahead of Carter in the depth chart IMO
  • Erick Smith will be the backup safety over Tanner. I'm basing this as Meyer listed him as the number 4 guy and Tanner as the number 5 guy at safety.
  • Reeves will be listed as the starting Nickel, not sure who will be the backup Erick Smith? 
  • Conley will be the other starting corner, not sure who will be his backup Webb OR Lattimore maybe with Apple backing up Grant?
alust2013's picture

I'm surprised Reeves is still top two to start, although I suppose he could have developed over the summer. I also wouldn't be surprised to see Burrows get a decent amount of playing time even if he doesn't start. I was impressed with him in the Indiana game last year. He played solid coverage and generally looked like he knew what he was doing, even in a corner spot.

...and Michigan still sucks.

zenshade's picture

People that are surprised by Reeves still being a starting candidate may want to consider that the change in coverage philosophy may be playing to his strengths.  He may be excelling at man coverage and jamming his guy close to the line of scrimmage.  I recall a few plays last year where he reacted explosively and nailed a receiver for little or no gain, looking very much like a Donte Whitner or Antoine Winfield, two of the hardest hitting, most physical DBs per pound of body weight we've ever had.  He may be exceptional in a scheme where he doesn't have to do a lot of thinking figuring out his responsibility for more than 3 or so seconds after the ball is snapped.

The problem is we as fans just tend to remember those times when a DB looked really bad and usually assume if he was the one closest to the guy that caught the ball he was obviously the one that wasn't where he should have been.  I'd venture to guess - and I'm not Ross Fulton or have any coaching experience so I am really just guessing - that with the complexity of the coverage schemes last year that about half the time it wasn't the case that the guy closest to the receiver was the one that blew the coverage.  In other words, Reeves and Roby may have had much better seasons than our gut-level fan reactions have led us to believe.

+5 HS
USMC11917's picture

Running in circles and being unable to locate the ball carrier on a long gainer tends to resonate in a fans memory for quite a while. 

+3 HS
zenshade's picture

True that. Or in Reeves case, having a 270 pound TE pull away from you on a long touchdown. He'll probably need to have an Antoine Winfield type season to live that one down.

Alpo's picture

Chris- does the staff have a date set in mind when the official starting lineup is put in place or will it come down to the last minute decision type of deal?

buckeyepastor's picture

I'm anticipating a depth chart mid-week from Urban that has a lot more "or" than Chris did.   I think until gameday there will be a number of positions where the true starter will be a toss-up.   

"Woody would have wanted it that way" 

+2 HS
buckeyepastor's picture

I really like our secondary this year.   I know they are a question mark still, but I really like how Reeves matured last year, and how Apple looked against a very good Clemson offense.   Grant and Powell and Conley I also think will be great.   

Evan Spencer has been a solid receiver for the past few seasons.  He's made some big plays and been a valuable blocker and athlete.  But I think it's a situation where we've seen his "ceiling" probably, and he's on a roster with a bunch of other guys that are just now beginning to realize potential.   He's been good, but I agree with Chris.   If our offense is going to really be what we hope for, it will mean others stepping up and Evan taking a secondary role.   

"Woody would have wanted it that way" 

+3 HS
Holy_Buckeye's picture

I would like to see Cam Burrows in the nickel with Bell and Powell at safety.

Go Bucks! 

+1 HS
BuckeyeGrownFloridaLiving's picture

Isn't Darron Lee a RS frosh, not a Sophomore?

+3 HS
D-Day0043's picture

I expect big things out of the special teams. They very well could be the deciding factor in a few games this year.

I am D-Day0043 and I approve this message.

+1 HS
Holy_Buckeye's picture

QB JT Barrett RB Ezekiel Elliott WR Corey Smith WR Michael Thomas H Dontre Wilson TE Jeff Heurman LT Decker LG Price C Boren RG Eiflen RT Baldwin TE Heurman

Go Bucks! 

CCatanzaro's picture

12 players would definitely be an interesting strategy..

Dairy-fed intellect and pure, unhinged sass.

 

+1 HS
countrybuckeye's picture

Great analysis.  When does the "official" 2-Deep come out from the University?

Jason Priestas's picture

Monday, probably.

countrybuckeye's picture

Thank you, Jason.  (Slow internet connection right now...)

countrybuckeye's picture

Oh, --- thank you BuckeyePastor.  Mid-week with plenty of "or" from UFM.

buckeye phi's picture

Just gotta say the knowledge exhibited by the commentators on this site is impressive.  Having read several comment sections on various college football sites, this one really stands out.  Not unrelated to that observation, there seems to be a very positive outlook here.  Haven't noticed many personal shots being leveled at eachother.

The two deep analysis shows some significant trouble spots.  This close to the opening kick-off the unsettled offensive line is a cause for concern -  especially at center. 

As many reading this probably know, the center is normally responsible for calling the pre-snap o-line signals.  It's important to have some consistency in that regard.  Plus, the fundamental importance of the relationship between the quarterback and the center makes a rotation problematic. 

Speaking of center though, it was encouraging to see that the transfer from Alabama was not able to just waltz in to Columbus and win the starting job right away.  Nothing against the young man - but all this talk of SEC superiority has become tiresome.

Uncertainty at one of the corners is troubling also - especially considering the trouble last years squad had with pass defense. 

On the other hand, it's comforting to see that the talent at safety must run so deep that Vonn Bell, a much vaunted 5-star recruit with some playing time under his belt, is not a lock to start.  They're saying he's fully recovered from that knee injury - so it's not that.

It's college football.  There are usually going to be open spots to fill and position battles.  The good news is that with a fine recruiter like Urban Myer at a powerful, tradition rich school like Ohio State, there should always be plenty of blue-chip talent around to fill the void

All in all, that two-deep looks pretty good going in to the season.

Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement. - Will Rogers

+3 HS
ibuck's picture

 nor does he have a cannon for an arm.

You don't need a cannon if you can see the receivers that are open or about to be open.

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

+7 HS
sixtiesbuck's picture

I remember a game in 1968 when Ronald J. Maciejowski completed a pass to Janikowski, an the stadium announcer called the play and said, "I've been waiting all year to call that combination." The crowd loved it.

oldmanbuck

+3 HS
QBYBuckeye's picture

Perhaps I am a totally depraved lunatic, but I am convinced Zeke will have over 1200 yards rushing this year, barring injury.

We have lots of rushing yards to distribute when you consider we lost two 1,000 yard rushers.  The question in my mind is whether Rod Smith, Dontre Wilson, or someone else will step up to make a second 1,000 yard rusher on this team.

It is now Game Week.  Go Buckeyes. Beat the Naval Academy.

New York Buckeye

+3 HS
Dougger's picture

ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh yeahhhhhhhhhhh!!! there's a lot of talent in the defensive backfield - I am excited to see these guys make plays

I like football

+1 HS
zenshade's picture

Does anyone know what happened with Devan Bogard?  Did he get injured again and I missed it?  I know he moved to LB last year and was thought to have a very high ceiling.  He was the earliest to get his stripe removed as a freshman and looked like one of those guys that was going to play very early.  I recall him being a terror on a few special teams plays last year, but have heard nothing about him this year.

+2 HS
wyatt's picture

The offense seems to get the publicity, but I think the defense is more important this year to see if the team will compete with the big  boys.  Playing only 1 team in the top 25 means the Bucks need to win every game. A great defense can do it. 

+1 HS
Bucksfan70's picture

i like the idea of having the teams strongest player (billy price) starting at center. i watched chad lindsay play in 3 or 4 games last year for alabama and he's not very good. if lindsay gets the start at center, that's not a good sign IMO.

since barrett's range is about 35-40 yards (gulp), i like big possession receiver mike thomas to replace devin smith - there's no way to get smith the ball deep if barrett can't throw farther than 40 yards (he can't), might as well get thomas in there to out muscle anyone and keep the chains moving.

i hope we see cardale jones and the fastest wr's on the team all line up and take the lid off the defense. just let cardale launch a couple downfield to whoever outruns the secondary. dude can throw 60-70 yards no prob.

i don't like the idea of 285lb michael bennet at NT, that doesn't make sense...

“Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't.” - Jerry Rice

-2 HS
OSU_1992_UFM's picture

First: OSU will not be relying on the "Big Play" IMO, Barrett doesn't need to chuck it a mile, he needs to be smart,accurate, and most importantly consistent. Love Devin Smith, but gone are the bombs, I think we see a more balanced offense, with more short/intermediate throws...let the athletes be athletes

Second: You're telling me that an All American canidate (and favorite I believe) shouldn't be playing the position he's been playing for...well, um since hes started. True he may not be the biggest guy ever, but ask Nick Bosa how much size matters when you use fantastic technique. Micahel is quick off the ball, uses his hands very well and understands leverage

UFM_Renewal

armybucknut's picture

Let's just get this thing going.... I'm baaaaaccccckkkkkkk

"Illegitimi non carborundum"

BuCkIfReAk's picture

I realize you have reeves OR apple, but I'd have Apple in bold...  also..  IMO if billy price is NOT a starter on this OL then we don't have any OL problems.  Billy will start at guard. I think he might be the second best OL(right now) on this team..  jmo.

Mark May is an alien.

Hallzer02's picture

I just like seeing that kind of defensive depth. I love #5 but sometimes it's better for a team to have a distributor instead of superstar at quarterback. I know #5 will come and do amazing things but it will be cool to see

O-H-!-O