Heading into his third year at Auburn the tackle is one of four returning starters on the offensive line from the 2013 SEC Championship team. Young began the season as a backup while still recovering from shoulder surgery, which prematurely ended his 2012 season that he began as a starter at right tackle.
Taking advantage of a suspension to starter Patrick Miller last season, in game six vs. Western Carolina he moved back into the starting lineup and never gave up that spot. It was Miller who finished the 2012 season as the starter after Young suffered an injury in game three, forcing him to sit out the rest of that season.
"It's been a little journey, you know, trying to bounce back from that shoulder surgery, but it's been going pretty good," Young told Inside the Auburn Tigers. "I'm still getting my strength back up day by day, but right now I'm real comfortable with the level in the situation right now."
Young noted that he should be a better player as a redshirt sophomore than he was last season. "I have gotten better since my first game back against Western Carolina," 6-6, 309 lineman said. "Being off a year throws you off a lot, but I can say that I have improved a lot."
In addition to Young the Tigers return all of the offensive starters from the national championship game other than Greg Robinson, who declared for the NFL Draft.
Avery Young has started a dozen games for the Tigers.
Who is going to take over Robinson's left tackle duties is one of the things that will be considered in spring drills by Coach Gus Malzahn and his staff. Young noted that he hasn't heard anything from the coaches about the possibility of moving him to Robinson's spot on the left side and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee said the current plan is to keep Young at right tackle. Lashlee said the coaches believe that Young has pro potential.
The Tigers have a variety of options with their tackles. Miller could make the move to the left side and give the Tigers five offensive linemen with starting experience. He has been working on the left side in the spring. Malzahn said that backup tackle Shon Coleman is continuing to make progress and should push for the starting spot at left tackle. He has been splitting reps on the first team with Miller.
The coach also noted that Robert Leff, who saw limited action last season as a redshirt freshman at left tackle, could also be in the mix at left tackle.
Wherever he lines up, Young said he is glad to be on the Tigers' roster. "It's an honor to be playing for Auburn right now and just to be around all of these great guys," he said. "I'm very proud to be here."
Young and the Tigers will go on display April 19th at their annual A-Day Game at Jordan-Hare Stadium.