Replacing 2,000-yard rusher Micah Mosley will be a tough task for the Nederland Bulldogs, but head coach Larry Neumann will have the pleasure of one the state's top defenders to help ease the process.
LB Dravanti Johnson, who has already verbally committed to Texas A&M, had 81 tackles, five sacks and five forced fumbles as a junior, easily earning all-district 22-4A honors. The 6-1, 220-pounder will be the focus of opposing offenses this fall, but is primed to eclipse those numbers.
Nederland will need the rest of the defense to fall in line. Even with Johnson, the Bulldogs allowed more than 355 yards per game last season. Nederland does have some potential in the likes of DL Stephan Huber and Eric Pompa and LB Ryan Sampere, who could also compete for the starting QB job.
The task of filling in for Mosley's 2,403 yards and 32 touchdowns goes to RB Chris Gutierrez, who averaged 5.5 yards per carry. Cameron Bass was impressive in a 21-carry stint (6.2 ypc), while Justin Krautz showed promise as well.
Sampere will likely replace departed QB Alex Moser, but Jordan Landry could also see some action under center.
The receiving corps also took a huge hit with graduation; Bass is expected to be the featured wideout along with Krautz. Asa Cardenas is a sleeper who could make an impact as well.
Nederland also lost a pair of all-district linemen, but have enough depth in two-way players Huber and Pompa, along with Justin Stewart, to ease the departures.
On paper, the Bulldogs appear to have taken a step back, but this is a seasoned squad that will likely take some non-district knocks (they open against Brenham) in order to take on the rugged 22-4A schedule.