Georgia Football: 5 Biggest Holes in the Roster Bulldogs Must Fill for 2013
With the Georgia Bulldogs having one more game left in the 2012 season, it's time to start looking at 2013 and see what's in store for Mark Richt's bunch.
If Aaron Murray decides to return, the offense for the Bulldogs will be set in 2013 because they will have Murray along with Keith Marshall, Todd Gurley, Malcolm Mitchell, Michael Bennett and a more experienced offensive line.
The defense, on the other hand, is a different story because defensive coordinator Todd Grantham is expecting to lose 12 players who have started for the Bulldogs this season.
That explains why the upcoming recruiting class for the Bulldogs has 17 defensive players expected to sign on National Signing Day.
Here are the five biggest holes in the roster the Bulldogs must fill in 2013.
No. 5: Defensive End
Cornelius Washington will graduate this year, and it looks like Abry Jones will make the jump to the NFL.
Garrison Smith took the place of Jones midway through the season and played at a high level. But it will be interesting to see who will take the place of Washington.
Ray Drew is the leading candidate, but Mike Thornton and Sterling Bailey could give Drew some stiff competition when spring practice hits.
Drew has played in all 12 games this year and has tallied 20 tackles and six quarterback hurries.
No. 4: Cornerback
Sanders Commings and Branden Smith are both seniors, so the Bulldogs will have to find two guys to fill their shoes.
Damian Swann did take over for Smith midway through the season and played well. Devin Bowman and Sheldon Dawson are the two guys that could help Swann at cornerback.
Bowman played sparingly in 12 games this year, while Dawson is the new kid on the block, but the coaches like what they see in him.
No. 3: Safety
This is where things get interesting because Shawn Williams and Bacarri Rambo are also seniors, so this is where a new player could see a lot of time.
Corey Moore will likely start at one of the safety positions, while Connor Norman, Josh Harvey-Clemons and a couple more guys will battle for the other safety position.
Norman and Moore will have the most experience at both safety positions, but they haven't seen too much playing time because of Williams and Rambo holding those two spots down for the last few seasons. These are two positions where the coaching staff can't afford to make mistakes because of the lack of depth.
No. 2: Nose Tackle
John Jenkins is a senior, and there are reports that Kwame Geathers could forgo his senior season to enter the NFL draft.
That leaves the door for a new nose tackle to take over, and it looks like Jonathan Taylor will be that guy.
Standing at 6'4'', 330 pounds, Taylor has the size to clog the middle. But the coaches would like to have another guy to complement Taylor, which could be an incoming freshman or a transfer from junior college.
No. 1: Outside Linebacker
Jarvis Jones has not confirmed he will enter the NFL draft, but it's almost a forgone conclusion that he will make the jump because he could be drafted in the top five.
Jordan Jenkins' play was increased, and he actually started alongside Jones at the other outside linebacker position. He will likely take over Jones' position.
That will leave the door open for Ramik Wilson, T.J. Stripling and James DeLoach to start alongside Jenkins next year.