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2016 Team Previews

Discussion in 'The Tradition' started by MaxATX34, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. MaxATX34

    MaxATX34 Texas Football

    Feb 17, 2009
    2016 Texas A&M Aggies
    Team Preview
    It has been bittersweet the past two seasons for TAMU. They have had back-to-back 13-1 seasons, but they missed out on capturing a real National Championship both times.

    The Ags Defense let them down in the SEC Championship Game last year, but the unit looks better across the board and is ready to help the team make another (this time hopefully successful) run.


    Sean Henry (89OVR) barely edged out Erik Lee (88OVR) in a battle for the starting QB position this Spring. The two have very different skill sets, so the battle went a long way in determining what kind of Offense TAMU would field this year. Henry has the elite arm (96THP 94THA) but is more or less immobile. Lee is a great runner (88SPD, 88AGI, 90ACC) who throws a weaker, more accurate ball than Henry (84THP 99THA). With Henry taking the snaps, fans should expect to see a more efficient version of last year's offense. Lee will most likely see the field in every game, though. He will have a package of plays for him to get the ball and give him chances to make things happen.


    Trey Williams (98OVR) had to redshirt and wait for his 5th and final year to be the starter at TAMU, but he looks ready to take advantage of his chance to shine. However, it remains to be seen what kind of beating his 5'8 186lb frame can take with an expanded workload. Behind him is Sophomore Randy Brown (85OVR). Brown has great speed and hands, and has the more prototypical frame at 6'0 219. Speedy (RS)Freshman Kevin Day (75OVR 96SPD) will be the #3.

    The position isn't looking elite beyond Trey. Coaches have missed out on a couple of hot-shot RBs that would've come in and taken over after Williams left. They look to change that this year and have a couple of good-looking runners on their radar.


    This experienced Corps is headed up by (RS)Senior Thomas Johnson (89OVR). No one is expecting him to have the same kind of season Mike Evans had last year, but he has the tools to be as good as he wants. Behind him are fellow Seniors Jaron Brown (85OVR) and David Walker (84OVR). These two have had increasingly important roles every year, and have so far combined for over 1,800yd and 13TD in their careers. Fans will also finally get a look at (RS)Freshman Kenny Hicks (79OVR). Hicks goes 6'6 220lb and has a first-step that is as shocking as his size. Seems like he could fill Evans role in the future.


    Michael Robbins (88OVR) will start one last tour of duty this year, backed up by Maurice Williams (84OVR). :5stars: TE Bobby Morris (81OVR) has muscled his way into the rotation as well. He isn't as athletic as his peers, but is a better blocker and has great potential at TAMU.


    The OL goes (OVR from LT to RT)


    4 out of 5 of them are (RS)Seniors. They are all ready to go. Except for Center Mike Matthews, they all go 305lb+ with three of them weighing in at over 320lb. LG Michael Miller is 6'7 326lb and loves to pull!


    Polo Manukainiu (90OVR) and Gabriel Green (85OVR) make up the best pairing at the position under Coach Max. Both are huge! Polo is 6'5 271lb and Green is 6'7 271lb. Both get off blocks well and are explosively quick/fast for their size (90ACC/89ACC). Great depth coming off the edge as well for A&M.


    The vision this Coaching Staff had for the DT position finally seems to have been realized. They set-up even better for the coming years, but right now they look like a game-changing unit. All-Everything Roderick Thomas (92OVR) has become an elite inside defender and NFL teams are ready to sign him now. His size/speed combo is crazy and allows him to really get after the QB. Starting beside him is (RS)Junior Michael Owens (89OVR). Owens is more of a gap-plugger and run-stopper than Thomas, and he is a legit 300lb. Excellent depth at this position as well. Finally looking like an SEC D-Line...


    Jamie Young (84OVR) returns after a pretty decent (RS)Freshman season. He has played under the shadow of Harper and Watkins and still looked good. Young had some competition this year, but his rangy-athleticism (86SPD, 81AGI, 99ACC) and experience gave him the edge. (RS)Freshman Steve Brown (85OVR) and (RS)Senior Michael Richardson (86OVR) are right on Young's heels and eager to take his spot if he should falter. Brown will most likely start at OLB next year.


    What else can be said about Brad Harper (93OVR)? He is a leader of men. If you have played A&M you are familiar with his game. Harper is a known-commodity, but there are some new faces at the position too. Manuel Jones (85OVR) will see the field for the first time this season. He is a (RS)Freshman with crazy potential.


    Donne Watkins (90OVR) is still doing his thing... He is still 6'5 231lb, and still flies around making plays (83SPD 92ACC). Keep your eye on him or he will make you pay. Richardson will back him up. Coaches are expecting a lot from this LB corps. This group has a chance to give A&M one of the best front-7's in the country.


    All-American Joe Huffman (91OVR) has decided to come back for his Senior year and everyone is happy about that. He lead the team in INTs, and will be on the short-list for multiple awards again. Basically the same cast & crew as last year here. This is a group that has a penchant for getting picks as well as giving up tons of yardage. The Coaching staff has been working as much as legally allowed with the DBs to correct their pass-defense woes.


    John Webb (88OVR) is an All-American who is fast-approaching elite status. A Thorpe finalist last year, he made up 1/2 of a deadly S combo. Deadly at both making big plays, and giving up big plays. Reggie Goodman gets his first taste of the big-time this year. The (RS)Freshman (82OVR) 3rd stringer might actually be the best in one-on-one type coverage situations.


    Surprise! Senior Jacob Marshall (84OVR) switched over to SS last year when the position was in shambles, and what did he do? Oh, just go out and clock 3INTs, 2FFs, and notch 7TFL while being one of the team leaders in tackles. He was rewarded with All-American status and looks to have an even better year this time. Sophomore David Estes (81OVR) will back him up while a talented Freshman, Robert Williams, (78OVR) redshirts.


    Both Freshman. The true Freshman Chris Norman (84OVR) will handle kicking duties, while the (RS) Freshman James Berry (87OVR) punts and handles kickoffs.


    Trey Williams finds himself returning Punts and Kicks for the Ags once again. If it affects his performance at RB, or if Coaches deem him an injury risk, then WR Thomas Johnson or perhaps backup RB Randy Brown will fill-in.

    Season Outlook-

    This team looks legit right now. If the offense can clean some things up and become even more efficient, and the defense can start to stop the pass... this team will be able to compete with anyone. The conference slate gets more difficult than in years past with South Carolina returning to the schedule, but TAMU is still expecting great things. I am thinking 10-2 is the floor for a team with this much talent.
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  2. Hellisan

    Hellisan Schemin 'em up

    Feb 10, 2009

    The good news is we pretty much bring everybody back. In terms of returning starters, we are right up there. QB, HB, FB, WR, TE, and most of the offensive line are all returning save for 99 OVR center Ross Burbank (two time Rimington Award winner, and Outland Trophy winner) who was selected in the 2nd round of the draft. We will miss Burbank, but we have a capable guy stepping in and we expect the offense to be one year better, with all these returning guys.


    Patrick Williams, 86 OVR - The 6-5 Williams is going to be a four-year starter barring injury or leaving early. He has a 92/92 Arm and absolutely no speed to speak of. He is the perfect guy to lead our stodgy, old-school pro offense. Last year Williams threw for 3,614 yards, 28 TD, 16 INT as a redshirt freshman.The backups include Spencer Keller, who is excellent in his own right with better athleticism than Williams, and two young pups who are redshirting.


    Kenny Bailey, 84 OVR - Bailey is 6-1, 248 and opponents feel every tackle. Blessed with adequate speed acceleration (very good for a big man) Bailey tallied 1,430 yards on 250 carries last year, with 14 TD. One area of concern were the 5 fumbles. However, he played well in big games against user teams, usually eclipsing 100 yards. He was second in the nation in yards after contact, and easily first in yards after contact per carry.

    We don't have a lot of depth or a "lightning" alternative to Bailey's thunder. Luis Leierer (90 OVR) will be the backup most likely. He is extremely shifty though not fast at all. Dwayne Porter is an 88 OVR sophomore who is still developing physically and will be a great option down the line.


    Two guys will share the job at fullback. Keith Clemons (79 OVR, 6-1, 229) is the more offensive-minded of the two with solid speed, great running ability, and meager blocking skills. Matt Harrison (76 OVR, 6-3, 248) isn't an uber-blocker but does have 94 impact blocking and better strength than Clemons. Clemons is officially the starter, but look for both to see the field.


    What a mess. A few working pieces, but certainly no studs to be found here. John Huggins (83 OVR, 93 SPD, 93 RTE, 80 CTH) is the starter. The 6-0, 172 Huggins had 885 receiving yards and 8 touchdowns last year as a true freshman, but had 14 drops since opponents knew where we were going with the ball. JUCO JR newcomer John Perry (79 OVR, 6-5, 223, 90 SPD, 87 RTE) will probably step into the #2 role. He has been promised PT so will have to see a lot of it. Paul Bolen adn Kevin are very capable sophomores and juniors, respectively, but more suited to the slot.


    Sean Davis (86 OVR, 6-5, 268) had a nice season last year. He had 588 receiving yards and 6 TD, but was also extremely effective as a blocker with 42 pancakes and 0 sacks allowed. Behind him are average fillers, with a blocker (Fitzpatrick) and receiver (Henry) being the options


    Ok, and getting better. It's a point of emphasis every year for us, so we hope it gets better although we've landed surprisingly few studs (and lost a BIGTIME stud to a transfer after season 2).

    From Left To Right:

    LT Michael Palmer, 6-5, 325, 83 OVR - Palmer was the third tackle we signed in season 1, and we figured he would be a career backup or move inside. However, after a painful transfer, his time has come. He's excellent in pass pro.

    LG Thomas Jordan, 6-2, 276, 87 OVR - It's a close race here between the Junior Jordan and SOPH Paul Hawthorne. Jordan could eventually be moved to C next year where his size will play better.

    C Gary Larson, 6-5, 325, 93 OVR - The senior Larson gets his chance to step in and do some things. He's big, strong, and can really anchor in the passing game. For the fourth straight year we will be very solid straight up the middle.

    RG Erik McLaurin, 6-5, 310, 85 OVR - McLaurin was a former JUCO transfer, giving us two seniors on the interior line to pair with Jordan or Hawthorne. He is a run-block specialist who we will watch closely in the passing game. Hawthorne could move over and assist if need be.

    RT Anthony Brooks, 6-8, 295, 88 OVR - Very balanced player who is especially good at run blocking. Just a sophomore, we think he will compete for some awards starting this year or next.
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  3. bravejaf

    bravejaf Walk On

    Jul 13, 2009


    The Bulldogs' offense returns just 5 starters so there will be some kinks to work out in the opening weeks. The biggest loss is at the WR position with three-year starter Joe Morrow graduating. His big play ability will be tough to replace. The starters for this year's squad are solid but not spectacular. Coaches are looking to WR #4 Matt Harris to step up this season. He was brought in to be a big play guy but has only played sparingly in his first two seasons. The man throwing to this receiving unit will be returning starter J.J. Pruitt. There is no argument that Pruitt was the MSU offensive MVP last year. He rushed for 13 touchdowns and passed for 22 touchdowns. Pruitt made great strides on his accuracy in the offseason so he should be able to cut down on the mistakes. The next two leading rushers graduated this past year so Keith Dunlap will assume the starting halfback role. "The Human Bowling Ball" has great speed for a 220+ back and should be an excellent fit for the Bulldogs' downhill offense. Anthony Smith and Nick Morton are next in line for carries. As for their blockers, that is another question mark. Three of the five linemen return from last year's squad but they had some breakdowns in blocking last year. Overall this is a talented group but needs to improve in pass blocking. Can't forget to mention FB/TE Alex Casey. He was recruited as a TE, moved to FB due to depth at TE and now moves back to TE due to lack of depth. In the MSU offense he mostly lines up at H-Back so there should not be a big adjustment. True FB David Butler will also see some playing time.


    The defensive unit should be the strength of this team. Last year's group put up some impressive numbers and most of the starters are back this year. Up front the Bulldogs return all four starters on the defensive line. The strength of that unit is up the middle with Marcus Lynch and big Nick James. Lynch is a great pass rusher with 11.5 sacks last season, while James eats up blocks and makes plays in run game. Ends Davis and Harris are not elite players but they do a serviceable job. MSU lacks an elite edge rusher at the end spot so most of the sacks come from the middle. The linebacker core returns two of the three starters, but suffers a big loss without Nagurski winner Bernardrick McKinney. His replacement, Carlos McCormick, looked great in spring ball so he could be a player to watch this fall. Grant Martinez started as a true freshman last season and he did a terrific job at OLB. Deion Jones is a little undersized but a solid OLB. He is now three-year starter for MSU. The heart of this defense is the secondary with three returning starters. Former LSU CB Dwayne Thomas is a senior and he should be a leader on defense. Kennard Horne also returns for his senior season. Horne has played significant minutes for Mississippi State since he stepped on field as a true freshman. He started three of his four years at MSU, and he was nickle back in year two. Freshman All-American Quincy Reid is a playmaker on defense. He was second on the Bulldogs in tackles and picked off five passes. He will be joined by converted CB Todd Smith. Smith played mostly nickle/dime cornerback last year but coaches worked with him at safety in the offseason. He should give a lift to the pass coverage that was torched by Michigan in the bowl game. It will be interesting to see if he can hold up on run defense or if R-SR Quadry Antoine needs to take over that role.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012
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  4. HotRod

    HotRod You ain't bout dat life!

    Feb 11, 2009
    Featured Threads:


    The Gamecocks will have a slightly different identity this season on offense, switching to a pistol offense that we believe will fit our new starter at QB. Our offense will be kind of like what the Redskins are running with RGIII. Most of the key skill position players are the same and we have a lot of depth as I will detail below.


    It'll be tough to follow up Tanner McEvoy who threw for 110 TD in a 2 year span and closed out his college career leading the Gamecocks to a 13-0 record. In comes sophomore John Daniels who is of the mold of a Denard Robinson, a lightning quick dynamic QB. We feel like the pistol is perfect for him and are excited to see this new element in what has been one of the best offenses for several years. He saw time last year with a small package of plays and garbage time and handled himself very well.


    Cedric Butler finally gets his time as the #1 HB this year. Butler is a home run hitter who is deadly on the edge. The one knock on him has been his ability to stay healthy. He missed a few games in the last two seasons but still managed to lock up returner of the year awards and be a nice change of pace on offense. Now his share goes up dramatically. Backing him up is Mike Davis who has been stuck behind plenty of great HBs during his career at SC. To ensure that Butler doesn't break down, Davis will get a healthy amount of playing time.


    Smith has been a solid FB/H-Back for us. He is a converted TE and performed admirably last season though we weren't a big running team. He is a great run blocker and also had solid hands lending himself to be a reliable receiver out of the backfield.


    This is a case of there being a #1 and 1b WR. Shaq Roland is the #1 guy on the depth chart thanks to his elite speed and has been super productive in his 2 years as starter. Trent Weeks was a pleasant surprise on the other side as he provides sure hands and is more of a possession receiver but what made him unique was his ability to break tackles of the CBs. These two were a lethal combination and will help Daniels grow as a QB. They are backed up once again by Nathan Hopkins and Stanley Williams.


    This has become a very deep position thanks to a great 2014 recruiting class. 3 TE will see playing time this season. Jay Collier is the starter on the depth chart but every guy has a role in the offense. Collier is the best blocker of the three and coincidentally has the best hands. Porter is the most dynamic and well rounded TE and lastly Pete Green comes into his first taste of action as a receiving threat. Last season the Gamecocks ran a good anount of 2 TE sets and this season will be the same.


    A little turnover on the line but still very talented across the board. The strength is the 2 guards and center, all redshirt sophomores and very strong and quick on their feet. The bookends are a bit of a question mark, Brandon Sykes is moving over to LT and we are not sure how he will handle protecting the blindside of Daniels while Brock Stadnik is seeing his first playing time.



    We are returning the starting D-line this season and this unit played very well last season combining for 28 sacks I believe. The ends Crum and Clark are very strong and active pass rushers and occupy the O-line on run plays allowing for the LBs to make plays. Chad Gross held his own as NT though he is a bit undersized. He will be spelled at times by Dustin Bennett.


    This unit has 3 new starters as the stud group of Mason Harris, Albert Tolbert and Billy Mcrae has moved on to the NFL. This group is now led by MLB Chad Bates. Bates is a sure tackler with great speed. Ryan Byrd won a close battle as the starting ROLB but Willie Holman will see some time. Same deal at LOLB where Richard Long is officially the starter but Jesse Hardin brings more of a pass rushing skill so will be in the game in those situations.


    This position mirrors our wide receivers. Both Darren Drew and John Newby are #1 CBs and Newby had an astounding season hauling in 11 INTs en route to capturing the Thorpe award. Darren Drew didn't do too bad himself grabbing 5 INT and forcing a few fumbles as he is a bulldog at the CB position. Jason Barber returns as the nickel corner and was very good last season. He's setting himself up to be a shutdown corner next season.


    Since we run a 3-3-5 there are 3 safeties on the field at times. Dane King is the elder statesman of the group going into his 4th year as a starter. He had his best season last year with 8 INT and was probably the defensive MVP to end the season with key INTs in the SEC championship and National Championship games. Terrence Patterson is the centerfielder of the group playing the deep middle of the field and he has the perfect skill set for it. His speed allows him to makes up a lot ground in a short about of time and he has WR quality hands.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
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  5. NYJuggalo45

    NYJuggalo45 Walk On

    Feb 10, 2009
    I refuse to ever play Hot Rod. His backups would be the best players on my team
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  6. Twister18

    Twister18 I aint got time to bleed!

    Oct 26, 2009
    I get to every year!!:p

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