So we’ve discussed the issue at quarterback, and then yesterday we talked about the game we’d most like to win. Today we’re going to see who the guys think will be 2016’s breakout player.
Give me one player you think we need to watch for that could be this year’s very pleasant surprise. And his last name can’t have two consecutive B’s in it.
Namaman: I am hoping the player(s) to watch this year will be the entire TE corps. Still the most under-utilized position in offenses – especially UGA offenses – in recent history. Let’s get back to where we have proven, NFL caliber TE’s like McMichael and Watson that can help Lambert, Eason and Chubb open up things for the WR’s as well. That is one of my fondest wishes… GO DAWGS!!
Robert: I want to go with Jackson Harris, but you have to assume that a lot of the tight ends are going to see playing time. How about Michael Chigbu? Then again, Kirby said the receivers would most likely be by committee. I still like the Chigbu pick. He should get significantly more targets, and I expect him to have a breakout year and be the pleasant surprise.
The Wrangler: I am going on the defensive side of the ball and picking #7 Lorenzo Carter. The defensive intensity Coach Smart has brought to UGA will motivate Carter to be the best he can be. After a great 2014 season, he was very quiet last year. You know he has been waiting all summer to prove that he can be the man. Since we are breaking in a new offense, the defense will have to be solid to take some pressure off the offense. I predict 10 sacks for Carter this year.
Smokewagon: Wow….another tough question! Mecole Hardman is a name that I haven’t heard much in pre-season coverage. I hope I didn’t miss a story on him being injured or otherwise not available. I admit that I have not been clicking on the blogs all summer! Perhaps the new stealthy coaching staff is holding his explosiveness under wraps and away from the media. If not Mecole, I would go with Charlie Woerner. I think Nauta and Holyfield will have serious impact, but I don’t think that will be a surprise.
I agree with the Wrangler and that it will be a defensive player, and we’re going to need a big man to step up on the defensive front early. So I going with a guy that I think started to come on strong there last season in Michael Barnett. I have it on very good authority that 94, although he’s a nice young man, has a real mean streak on the football field. Plus he’s coachable. And we have one of the best d-line coaches around in Rocker.
Thanks for joining us for this preseason primer around the tailgate. Hope you’ve enjoyed it, and Go Dawgs y’all!
Greg Poole Thanks. For som reason I think he is older than he is. I want to make him a senior lol. Feels like Bynum has been here for a while.
Greg Poole That would be big time for the middle of that defensive front 7 if he can.
The fact that it has been so quiet about Mecole has me thinking they have something set up for him.
Reddawg13 O-line depth is always important, especially once the leaves start to turn. Good choice.
MMCSDAWG Good choice for sure. He has the tools and I am excited to see him grow up in this defense as well.
I’m going to go with a young man that showed signs last year but didn’t really play a lot, I believe he is going to change the dynamic of our defense and allow Kirby to go man to man more often on the outside receivers and therefore free up someone else to put pressure off the edges. So my surprise player is going to be J. Briscoe!
I keep hearing the coaches praise Johnny O’Neal at practice. If the senior from Dublin can add quality depth to the ILB room, he will be a major surprise in an area that critically needs depth.
I am going with Gallaird and Sims. I hated to pick two, but those are my choices. Of course there are going to be many breakouts this year, better coaching and better S&C with more maturity will bring huge changes.
Bulldawg Bob2 Good choice. The roster shows him as a junior but he was an EE in 2013 and redshirted. He is actually a RS soph.
I’m going with a junior who moved from the o-line to TE last year and is now back with the o-line. The new S&C staff has him up to 292 lbs and he has had a good offseason and fall camp. I look for Aulden Bynum to be a guy that Offensive Coordinator Jim Chaney can use as an extra blocker in short-yardage and goal line situations or someone who O-line Coach Sam Pittman can plug in on the line if someone gets dinged up or needs a breather.