Navy Spring Review: Center

The Navy Midshipmen recently completed their 2014 spring practice drills. GoMids.com will now review every position, listing the starter, backup and third string players. In this edition we look at the offensive guards.

CENTER

Starter: Tanner Fleming Sr.
Back ups: Blaze Ryder Jr.
Third String: Maurice Morris So.
OR/Third string Andrew Martin So.
Junior center Tanner Fleming is a very strong, physical and technically proficient lineman. Last year he started 12 games missing one game with a concussion. He had a terrific game against Notre Dame. Fleming helped the Mids end the season with six straight games rushing for over 300 yards. He has started 23 games at center and is considered one of the strongest players on the team. Fleming is a 6-2, 276 pound center who has gotten bigger and stronger every year since he joined NAPS.

Backup Blaze Ryder filled in at center for Fleming against San Jose State after Fleming missed the game. Ryder is tough and very physical. He played in seven games and in his only start in the overtime win against San Jose State he helped Navy rush for 432 yards. Ryder (5-11, 265) was the center last year at NAPS. Blaze is the younger brother of Mid junior defensive back Wave Ryder. Ryder, like his brother, played his high school football at Kamehameha high school in Hawaii. Ryder did a nice job with the offensive line calls against San Jose State. He is a short, stocky linemen with surprising quickness. He can deliver a pop off the line. Ryder has a non-stop motor, is tough and very physical. He definitely pushed Fleming this spring.

Sophomore Maurice Morris is a 6-3, 315 pound road grader who was a direct admit last fall. He was a three year starter at LaPorte high school. He started out as a center but moved to right tackle his last two high school seasons. Morris may have ended up at Navy because he fractured his foot during his senior year which caused him missing the first six games. As a result some of the football factories backed away recruiting him. When he returned he played in some pain but still was productive. Morris is huge for a Navy lineman and that is after trimming down from his high weight of 355. He is big, girthy, wide body who really gets after opposing linemen. He is surprisingly quick off the ball and finishes his blocks.

Fellow sophomore Andrew Martin was a starting offensive tackle at the Naval Academy Prep School in 2012. Martin is a 6-4, 277 pound lineman from Decatur, Alabama. Martin is a powerful, athletic, physical lineman who loves contact and seems to it brings it every play. He has a long wing span, good body control and balance. He is the son of a college football coach and an excellent technician. Martin is a terrific athlete who can perform spectacular dunks on the basketball court.

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