Jason's Friday Mailbag: San Jose State Week

Answering your questions about the Auburn Tigers as they prepare to face San Jose State on Saturday.

DapperDanMan34: With San Jose State planning on throwing the ball a lot, what front four do we see this week in the Auburn D? Do you think we will see Raashed Kennison or Justin Thornton get any snaps later in the game?
I think you will see a lot of Gabe Wright, Elijah Daniel and LaDarius Owens at defensive end with Wright and Montravius Adams at tackle. I do believe you’ll see Davonte Lambert more involved with the possibility of Raashed Kennion getting into the mix. My guess is Thornton redshirts.

AugTiger: Do you expect to see Roc Thomas get in the game this week?
Yes, I think we will see Roc get some carries this weekend and possibly get a shot to return a kickoff. I believe we would have seen him last week if not for the downpour late in the contest

upfront: Do you expect to see the TE’s get more involved in the passing game?
I believe C.J. Uzomah has an opportunity to become of the biggest beneficiaries of Duke Williams stepping up in the middle of the field. They’re going to have to roll coverage to No. 1, leaving C.J. with a linebacker or defensive end at times.

MSandPHDatAU: Would Arkansas have had to start the 3rd quarter if coaches were stuck in the elevator?
In the unlikely event that happened my guess is they would have waited until they were able to get into the booth. Much like both headsets not working on the field, both teams have the chance to be on equal footing.

Tiger45: Jason, you said last week you are usually on the sideline for the game. How many others from the press are on the AU sideline? Is it horribly uncomfortable due to the heat? Do you carry your own water or does Auburn take care of that? Is there a designated area where you are supposed to stay?
Most of the guys who also cover the team are in the press box. Just one or two of us on the field. The heat doesn’t bother me a whole lot now that I’m in better shape, but it can be pretty brutal at times. Auburn provides water, but on a day like last Saturday it was gone pretty quickly. I usually drink up on the bench at halftime when the team is inside the locker room. As for designated areas, photographers aren’t allowed inside the team box (between the 30-yard lines). Everywhere else is clear.

gtwstock: What position do you think will have the first change on the depth chart? Offense and defense. (Not counting the suspensions).
My guess would be at one of the wide receiver spots. They are so interchangeable that it wouldn’t really matter. As for defense possibly Derrick Moncrief back to the first spot at safety.

Jello1: Watching the game again it appeared to me the two best players on defense for that game played the star position. Any plan to get them both on the field at the same time?

I believe there is a good chance you will see Justin Garrett and Robenson Therezie on the field some together this week. When Auburn goes to six defensive backs that is an option the coaches have.

Therezie is a playmaker for the Auburn defense

tigerwwb: From what I have read Braden Smith is a great athlete. Do you think we could ever put him in the backfield in certain situations to add another blocker for short yardage or some kind of trick play.
Braden Smith is a really good athlete for a big guy, but it’s tough to get in the backfield at 6-6 and leverage a defender on the move. I could see him as an extra tight end, however, in those situations.

Aupoker: Nick only had 6 pass attempts in the game last week. What is a realistic expectation for the number of attempts this week?
I think a likely number for pass attempts this week would be 18-20 for Marshall. I believe the coaches want to get him fully involved in the offense and that means throwing the ball and trying to get into a rhythm.

ATLtiger07: Who are some players that you're expecting to see a lot more of this week?
I’m looking to see more of Tre Williams, Nick Ruffin, Stephen Roberts and maybe Raashed Kennion on defense. Offensively, I think Peyton Barber, Roc Thomas and Tony Stevens are three guys that should get more action if the Tigers take care of business.

wcvet: How much carryover from Arkansas is there in preparing for this game? What future opponent runs similar offenses and defenses to SJSU and will have carryover from them? What future opponents are similiar so we should expect Auburn to attack them in similar ways?
As for similarities to Arkansas, I think probably Georgia, LSU and Alabama are going to be the most similar in terms of what they want to do on offense. As for San Jose State on defense the style is similar to what Auburn did for years, a true 4-3. That’s what Robinson did at Texas and what he believes in.

AubRX: Has the coaching staff ever considered having or could we ever see Marshall and Johnson on the field at the same time, possibly for multiple plays of a possession? I would think this could drive a defense batty with the skill set both bring.
Anything is possible and I’m sure they have something in place for a particular trick play, but with Auburn’s skill guys and talent on offense the Tigers probably don’t need to try to go outside the box too much.

HillCountryTiger: Hey Jason, What do you think our defensive end rotation will look like by late in the season and do you think they will be effective against the pass?
That’s one of the biggest question marks that remains for me. I believe LaDarius Owens will get back a starting role at some point and provide more of a true pass rush at defensive end. Carl Lawson remains the wild card for me. If he could get back and be able to play 15-20 snaps late in the season it would probably be worth it for the Tigers.

aunatchamps: I know it is football season, but do you think we will add one or two more recruits to this outstanding basketball class and who are some names that we should watch for?
I think there is a possibility Auburn could add more commitments to the 2015 class. A player to watch is big guard/small forward Jacob Evans from Baton Rouge. He visited last weekend and I think the Tigers are definitely in the picture.

tinye: You tweeted that listening to ESPN in the afternoon is painful. I agree 100%. What do you attribute the lack of respect Auburn gets nationally? When talking about national championship contenders from the SEC this year you hear Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia and even LSU and they overlook the defending SEC champs with most of their team returning???
I’m not much into the lack of respect argument when it pertains to Auburn. They are ranked in the Top 5 in the country. As for Auburn in the SEC race most of the people talking were looking at the schedule as being too tough. No question when it compares to the other teams you mentioned the road is definitely easier for them to navigate.

aunatchamps: Who do you think are the remaining 5 or 6 in this football recruiting class? Desperate need for DT and DE.
I’m not sure there are five or six spots left. It could be more like four. It doesn’t change Auburn’s need for defensive linemen remaining with probably three spots still left for those spots. I like the Tigers’ chances with D’Andre Walker with teammate Montavious Atkinson on board. Auburn is still in the mix with several others as well like Daron Payne with Trenton Thompson still being recruited by the Tigers. Still have juco Maurice Swain out there as well. By the time things get rolling this fall I expect a few new names to pop up as well.

aufan411: How soon do you think Tre Williams cracks the starting line-up?
It will be tough for Tre to get into the starting lineup any time soon, but he’s definitely a potential difference-maker at linebacker. If he continues to show up and play well, which I expect, I could see him pushing Kris Frost by the middle of the season.

DoubleAgen: Suppose in a game this year we get the ball down 4 with less than a minute left. Who does Gus put in at QB for the last drive?
No question Nick Marshall gets the call. He’s Auburn’s QB and has proven he can get the job done in that role

Eagle70: What True freshman should get playing time against San Jose State?
If Auburn can build a lead it should be a good opportunity to get Kennion and possibly Dontavius Russell some snaps on the defensive line and Tre Williams at linebacker. Also should be a chance for Roberts and maybe Markell Boston at safety. Offensively, I think Roc Thomas is the guy there with Braden Smith if they get to the second team.

colter: Do you think Melvin Ray will be a starter this week?
Melvin Ray could absolutely be a starter at wide receiver this week, but those are positions that rotate a good bit already. The field position and what Auburn wants to do on the first play really dictate the starter for the most part anyway.

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