With spring practice a mere five weeks away - start your countdown clocks - I present my entirely unofficial Georgia Tech offensive spring tw0-deep depth chart.
WR: DeAndre Smelter Anthony Autry
WR: Micheal Summers Darren Waller
LT: Bryan Chamberlain Nick Brigham
LG: Trey Braun Shamire Devine
C: Thomas O’Reilly Freddie Burden
RG: Shaquille Mason Errin Joe
RT: Chase Roberts Chris Griffin
QB: Justin Thomas Tim Byerly
BB: Zach Laskey Matt Connors/Broderick Snoddy
AB: Synjyn Days B.J. Bostic
AB: Deon Hill Charles Perkins
There’s six returning starters – Braun (8 starts in 2013) Chamberlain (7), Days (7), Mason (13) Summers (11), Smelter (8). Only four of the starters (in this projection, at any rate) are seniors – Days, Hill, Mason and Smelter.
For the purposes of the 2014 team, the injuries to offensive linemen Ray Beno and Morgan Bailey weren’t the worst thing, as they opened up playing time for Braun, Chamberlain and Roberts. Snoddy will get a look at A-back in the spring, as he did a little bit last season, and Donovan Wilson, who redshirted last year and was an A-back, will be tried at B-back.
Having Autry back from his torn ACL will be good for competition at that group. Along with Autry, Smelter, who is playing baseball this spring but will also take part in spring practice, is back and Summers has a year of experience, and that will be a push to Waller, who is headed into his senior season.
The offensive line is in desperate need of the six signees coming in (none were early enrollees). Tech will have nine scholarship offensive linemen available in the spring, two of whom did not play in 2013 (Burden and Joe) because of injury. By comparison, there’s seven scholarship A-backs, including either Wilson or Snoddy, and two more are coming in as signees (Myles Autry and Clinton Lynch).
Needless to say, an opportunity for a walk-on to make an impression on the line. (Brigham, who transferred from Maryland due to a hardship situation, is a walk-on.)
With the signees, the roster will have 15 offensive linemen and nine A-backs on scholarship by the fall. I think that’s a little shy of what coach Paul Johnson wants on the offensive line and is one more than he wants at A-back, but Autry would qualify as a player you’d take regardless of numbers at that position. The competition at A-back figures to be fierce again.
Defense on Tuesday.