5. Georgia Bulldogs- Three of the five teams on this list break in a new quarterback, starting with the Bulldogs. Seven of the top eight in receiving yards for Georgia last season will return to make Murray's transition easier. They also return their top two running backs behind an offensive line that returns five starters.
Murray could throw the football all over the field at Plant High School, but Georgia won't rely on him for that this season until he gets comfortable. With the best wide receiver in college football out wide in A.J. Green (808 yards, six touchdowns), Murray should get settled in quicker than most new quarterbacks.
4. Auburn Tigers- Quarterback Chris Todd graduated after last season, leaving a hole that the Tigers will fill with former Florida quarterback Cameron Newton. Auburn was third in the SEC in scoring offense last season without a playmaker at quarterback. Todd was limited in what he could do from the position, but Newton will give them another threat on the field. He can tuck the ball and run, something Auburn didn't have out of Todd last year.
The Tigers return their top two receiving threats in Darvin Adams and Terrell Zachery. Senior Mario Fannin (285 yards) and sophomore Onterio McCalebb (565 yards, four touchdowns) will carry the load at running back, while freshman Michael Dyer won't allow much of a drop off. Offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn has proved to be one of the more creative play callers in the country, but his strength comes in putting Auburn's playmakers in the best position to succeed.
3. Florida Gators- John Brantley takes over at quarterback in a similar situation to Murray at Georgia. The Gators return four of five starting offensive lineman and their top four skill players in rushing yards. Florida does lose their top three players in receiving yards, so the emergence of a go-to wide receiver for Brantley is crucial.
Deonte Thompson (343 yards, four touchdowns) could turn into that player. The two have developed chemistry on the scout team over the past three seasons, and Brantley always seemed to look Thompson's way when he came into blowout games over the past two seasons. Andre Debose and Chris Rainey (575 rushing yards, five touchdowns) will provide elusive playmakers at the slot receiver position. The key to success on offense will be to find a deep threat, whether it is Thompson or Carl Moore.
2. Arkansas Razorbacks- Every elite offense starts with the quarterback, and the Razorbacks have the best in the SEC at the position. Ryan Mallett is the prototypical NFL quarterback. He is 6-7, 238 pounds with a strong arm that can't be taught. The Razorbacks return three of their top four running backs this fall, which won't allow opposing defenses to drop back and defend Mallett's ability to throw the football.
Arkansas' five top receivers will also be back. Greg Childs (897 yards, seven touchdowns) is a budding star and should have an even bigger year this fall. Jarius Wright (681 yards, five touchdowns), Joe Adams (568 yards, seven touchdowns) and Cobi Hamilton (347 yards, three touchdowns) will give Mallet plenty of options to throw to. Tight end D.J. Williams (411 yards, three touchdowns) is yet another weapon.
1.Alabama Crimson Tide- The experience returning on offense in Tuscaloosa will be tough to top. Greg McElroy got a lot of heat last season because he didn't consistently make plays at quarterback, but he still threw for 2,508 yards, 17 touchdowns and only four interceptions. They also return Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram (1,658 yards, 17 touchdowns) and Trent Richardson (751, eight touchdowns) at running back. It's not often that the returning Heisman Trophy winner will be relegated to splitting carries, but that could be the case in Tuscaloosa this fall.
Julio Jones (596 yards, four touchdowns) didn't put up the big numbers expected from him, but he is still one of the best receivers in the conference. Marquis Maze (523 yards, two touchdowns) and Darius Hanks (272, three touchdowns) will serve as the speed receivers for the Crimson Tide.
Follow Cody Jones on
Best SEC Offenses
Fightin Gators Top Stories
Franz Beard's Thoughts of the Day; Feb.28A few thoughts to jump start your Tuesday morning...
Fightin GatorsYesterday at 9:28 PM
Pre-Spring Analysis: RB’s and TE’sThe Gators return a lot on offense in 2017. The quarterback position is the lone place where the experience is lacking, but at running back and tight end we have seen some terrific…
Fightin GatorsYesterday at 6:16 PM
SEC and Big Ten Make up Takacs' Top ThreeDAVIE, Fla. -- Schools representing the Big Ten and SEC are currently soaking up the full attention of 2018 Sunshine State tight end, George Takacs, who's also fresh off an invite…
Scout FootballYesterday at 12:40 PM
Alex Faedo Named SEC Pitcher of the WeekGAINESVILLE, Fla. – After the weekend that Florida’s pitchers had on the mound, it’s only fitting that junior Alex Faedo was named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Week.…
Fightin GatorsYesterday at 11:31 AM