Josh Newberg-The tackle
position has been filled by Clifton Dixon and a combination of two soon to be
starts in Aaron Jones and Emanuel Dunbar. Clifton Dixon has really excelled in
stopping the run. With the loss of Travis Johnson, the D-line will not miss a
beat with Dixon
Dave Peters- Dickson is man
amongst boys this spring. Not only is he stopping the run but he's also picking
up sacks left and right. If he continues his play, the former Miami
Northwestern standout will be off to the NFL soon. Andre Fluellen has played
well coming off of his pulled hamstring injury. As he gets stronger, he will
get even better. True freshman Emmanuel Dunbar has impressed me. He is very
quick and with gains in the weight room, he should become an excellent player.
Josh Newberg- At defensive
end Kameron Wimbley and Alex Boston have been relentless pass rushers this
spring. Each has great size and speed and has been pretty much unstoppable.
Dave Peters- Wimbley is so
quick and I expect him to have a huge season. The only thing that has been
holding him back is a lack of size. Boston has impressed me as well. However,
I do think there will be a slight drop off at the defensive end position from
last year. Outside of Wimbley, I don't see a whole lot of consistency.
Standout player- Kameron
Wimbley is a beast out there. First of all he looks like Jevon Kearse and plays
with the same style. He is a speed pass rusher who is strong as an ox. Wimbley
has been impossible to stop and has a sack in every practice.
Josh Newberg-The team had
an early scare when playmaker Ernie Sims went down, but Marcello Church filled
in nicely. This spring the linebackers have played up to expectation. They are
aggressive, nasty and violent. The leader right now is Buster and even though
he's not the biggest guy out there he is not afraid to mix it up with anyone.
Dave Peters-Florida State
might have the top linebacker unit in the country. Ernie Sims, Buster Davis and
A.J. Nicholson have been very tough to stop. I expect to Davis and Sims more
involved in the pass rush.
Standout player- Buster
Davis is a leader not only vocally but also by his play on the field. This is a
great attribute because we have so many young linebackers coming in. He is
extremely quick and for his size he is a great run-stopper.
Josh Newberg-The defensive
situation is interesting. On one side Cromartie is a lock-down corner but on
the other side the team is just looking for consistency. Gerard Ross and J.R. Bryant have been splitting time as of last practice. Ross struggled early but
he has put himself in better positions to make plays. Bryant just started
playing with the first team, so it will be exciting to see if he wins the
starting job by fall.
Dave Peters-Croamrtie is a
lock down corner who will most likely be receiving a paycheck from the NFL
soon. Like Josh said the other corner spot is searching for consistency. I
expect J.R. Bryant or Trevor Ford to eventually win a spot in the starting
lineup. Both are young but the talent is there.
Standout player- Anotnio
Cromartie has been dominating at his positions. He is such a force the
quarterbacks shy away from throwing in his direction. Besides all Cromartie
does on the field, what really impressed me was his leadership. The scrimmage
that he was held out of, he was all over the field like a DB coach. Every play
he was yelling at the young corners and instructing them what to do.
Josh Newberg-The two
starters this spring have been Pat Watkins and Kyler Hall. The two have laid
some BIG hits on unsuspecting receivers going over the middle. Pat is more of
an all around safety while Kyler is an enforcer. Roger Williams has also been
playing well on the second team. If he could haul in a couple more picks that
he has dropped, he could make a serious push at the starting lineup.
Dave Peters- Between Pat
Watkins and Roger Williams the free safety position is very good shape. I
expect to see Williams play some rover as well. Hall has had a very good spring
and I have been impressed with both McClure and Ingram. I expect to see both of
them on the field quite a bit.
Standout player- I am
changing this to SURPRISE PLAYER. Pat Watkins is clearly the most talented and
deserves to be the standout player. My pick for surprise player may shock some
people but its Kyler Hall. Going into spring I was not a fan of Hall in any
sense of the word, but after seeing him this spring he changed my mind. He is a
force up the middle and there is not a guy on the offense that hasn't got a good
lick from him. If he can improve on his coverage our secondary will be menacing
to opposing quarterbacks.