This group of guys returning, I was figuring up last night, the offensive line actually gave up 12 sacks in 11 games. Actual sacks. We've been getting beat up pretty good lately in this NFL draft process. We gave up a lot of hits on the quarterback but the team gave up a lot more sacks; you know running backs and tight ends and different wide receivers are figured in that mix. If they don't run a hot route, Jay has to eat it as a sack. Everybody assumes it's the offensive line. We've got a ways to go, don't get me wrong, but they've really improved from the year before and got much better this spring.
We've got four guys coming in here in the fall that we think can give us some added dimensions. Hopefully we'll be able to redshirt all of those. We've got some tall, lanky ones in there that have got to put on some weight and are working hard at it. So that part will be fun.
Q: Reilly Lauer, the kid from Cleveland, is he going to be a defensive end or offensive lineman?
Well, we may give him a shot to play on that side. It's according to what our defensive guys want to do and what he wants to do. I mean, he knows we recruited him and I took him in an offensive line slot but that's the kind of athletic people we are looking for; someone that might be able to give us some help on defense. If not, we are going to get a great, quality player over here on the offensive line.
Q: Looking back a year ago, coming out of the spring of 2005 and comparing that to now. What are your feelings on the overall shape of the offensive line? Do you feel a little bit better, worse or about the same about the offensive line?
Much better and that's not directed towards any individuals. It's just the fact that these guys have been in the system. They have been recruited to do what we do. Even though that's evolved more and more it has a lot to do with what you have to work with. These guys, just like this spring, the defensive line was able to put in defensive line stunts and games. Not a problem. These guys [OL] know what to do, how to counter it and did a great job. They are just so much further ahead, knowledge wise. It's due to the fact that most were able to redshirt and learn. Other than a quarterback probably the most any group has to learn is the offensive line.