There's little doubt that most of the talk surrounding Texas A&M in the run up to 2013 has and will continue to focus on the name of Johnny Manziel. His off-field issues have been well covered by the sports media, Bleacher Report included, but we've yet to see how, if at all all of this attention will affect his on-field play.
Even if Manziel's performance does fall off, say 10 percent, he would still be heads and shoulders better than 95 percent of the quarterbacks in the FBS. Suffice it to say the quarterback position is well taken care of at A&M.
But taking a quick peek around the rest of the A&M practice field will show you plenty of new faces all vying for those precious few top positions on the depth chart. On offense, nearly the entire wide receiving corps, save Mike Evans, will be new starters this fall.
There's plenty of young talent head coach Kevin Sumlin has to work with, including sophomore Sabian Holmes and freshmen Edward Pope, Ja'Quay Williams and Sebastian Larue, but any or all of these receivers will need to bring their game up several levels during fall camp to have even the faintest glimmer of hope in keeping up with Johnny Football; great quarterbacks aren't made with mediocre receivers.
Last season, the Aggies' defensive backs were the weak leak statistically, ranking 12th in pass defense in the SEC. With only four returning starters in the defensive backfield (and no returning linebackers), that weak link could rear its ugly head again in 2013.
You can't have a porous pass defense in the SEC and hope to win championships, and Coach Sumlin will need to find some youngsters to step up quickly and secure a spot atop the depth chart before Alabama comes calling on September 14.
Texas A&M returns the fewest starters—just 10—of any team in the SEC, and the Aggies will obviously need to overcome that massive depth chart shakeup if they have any hopes of challenging for an SEC-West crown in 2013.
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