It’s not secret that Artis Hicks and Anthony Herrera have been battling for the starting right guard spot in training camp, with both getting their turn with the first-team offense. But head coach Brad Childress remains non-committal about who is ahead in the competition and sounds like he wants to keep the competition alive for now.
“I would just tell you that I don't think either one of them has a head up; that is why it is a competition.” Childress said. “I am just looking for, as I mentioned before, a level of consistency that I can trust and I can know what I am going to get and like what I am going to get.”
Childress was also remarkably candid in describing the differing styles of the two players.
“A little bit different players,” he said. “Obviously Artis is more comfortable in a left-handed stance. Herrera is probably a more gifted athlete, if you will, in terms of his feet and his movement when he pulls. Artis is probably a little bit more of a powerful man. He's probably 10 pounds heavier than Herrera. They both probably bring different things to the table.”
Without saying so, one gets the impression they would like to see Herrera win the job because of his upside and athleticism, which to some degree fit with many of the West Coast Offense blocking schemes a little better. Plus, Hicks has a little more versatility to be a swing guy for depth at multiple spots.
At some point, Childress will have to name a starter so the offensive line can develop their chemistry together.
In the end, consistency will be the key. And in the meantime, the competition between Hicks and Herrera keeps both players striving to be at the top of their game.