Florida Gators Football: Projecting Post-Spring 2-Deep Depth Chart

Randy ChambersAnalyst IApril 30, 2014

Florida Gators Football: Projecting Post-Spring 2-Deep Depth Chart

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    These next few months are going to be long for Florida Gator fans. A wise one man once said that the offense stinks. You can only watch the spring game so many times, and highlights of past seasons get old really fast. Another thing you can do is play with the roster and put together a depth chart of what the lineup should look like if the season was going to start a week from now.

    While the Florida Gators have not released an official depth chart, that doesn’t stop us from projecting what one would look like. We’ve kept tabs on the players throughout the spring and watched their progress leading up to the spring game. Now that it’s all over, it’s time to put together a depth chart.

    Here’s your unofficial Florida Gators depth chart heading into fall camp.

Quarterback

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    Starter: Jeff Driskel

    Backup: Skyler Mornhinweg

     

    Driskel is the most experienced quarterback on the roster and has offensive coordinator Kurt Roper going nuts over his potential. There’s no doubt he’s going to be the starter, but he has plenty of work to do to convince Florida fans he’s ready to turn the corner.

    Mornhinweg was actually one of the surprise players during the spring game, and if that means anything to the coaching staff, he clearly has a leg up over Will Grier for the backup job. However, don’t count out the true freshman just yet.

Running Back/Fullback

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    Running Back

    StarterKelvin Taylor

    Backup: Adam Lane

     

    Taylor has star written all over him and is poised to have a breakout season. He looked faster and is in much better shape than he was last season. Don't be surprised if Taylor is one of the top running backs in the SEC this season.

    The backup can go to just about anybody, and it likely will, with a plethora of talented backs eager for carries. Lane received several carries in the spring game and brought the toughness by picking up yards after contact. He's the type of physical runner Florida needs and is deserving of a shot at the backup role.  

     

    Fullback

    StarterHunter Joyer

    BackupGideon Ajagbe

     

    Really nothing to see here. Joyer has started most of his career at fullback the last three seasons and has done a fairly good job in the blocking department. He's not much of an offensive threat, with just 23 career carries and six catches, but that could change in this creative offense. Ajagbe moved from linebacker to fullback last season and will remain a backup. 

Wide Receiver

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    Receiver X

    StarterQuinton Dunbar

    BackupAndre Debose

     

    Dunbar is Florida's most productive returning receiver with Soloman Patton gone. He finished last season with 40 receptions for 548 yards. Certainly, Dunbar will have to find the end zone as Florida's go-to guy, but his sure hands and leadership will work wonders for an unproven unit.

    Debose is the Gators' X-factor, assuming he will be healthy after suffering a torn ACL last season. His speed and playmaking ability is just what this offense needs.

     

    Receiver Z

    StarterAhmad Fulwood

    BackupDemarcus Robinson

     

    Fulwood showed promise last season as a freshman, as he came on late and finished the year with 17 catches for 127 yards and a touchdown. His ability to get downfield and his size at 6'5" is intriguing to the Florida coaching staff.

    Robinson has the ability to be a starter, but he still has some growing up to do and has to prove he can stay out of trouble leading up to the regular season.

     

    Receiver SL

    StarterLatroy Pittman

    BackupValdez Showers

     

    This position still seems to be up in the air heading into the fall, but Pittman obviously has a little more experience over the former running back.

    Showers has playmaking ability and will see playing time, but he was a hit-or-miss throughout spring ball. For now, we'll give the slight edge to Pittman, but this is a receiver spot that is still up for grabs. 

Tight End

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    StarterClay Burton

    BackupTevin Westbrook

     

    Burton is the most experienced tight end on the roster after starting nine games last season at the position. However, just one reception for 12 yards has to change.

    Roper relies heavily on his tight ends and will ask a lot more of Burton and others. Westbrook played in all 12 games and caught three passes for 30 yards. Yup, that was all of the offensive production the Gators got out of their tight ends last season.

    It's important to note that nothing is concrete yet at this position. While Burton and Westbrook have the experience, Florida added three tight ends in this year's class (DeAndre Goolsby, Moral StephensC'yontai Lewis) for a reason. Everybody will have a say before the opening game. 

Offensive Line

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    Left Tackle

    StarterD.J. Humphries

    BackupKavaris Harkless

     

    Humphries was one of Florida's most consistent offensive linemen before ending his season with a knee injury. He's healthy now and will hold down Driskel's blindside.

    Harkless is a 2014 recruit with a ton of upside and a bit of a mean streak to his game. He'll use this season likely to add weight to his 6'5" frame.

     

    Left Guard

    StarterTyler Moore

    BackupRoderick Johnson

     

    Moore spent time working at guard last year before an injury to Chaz Green forced him to slide over to tackle. He's now at his more comfortable position and should have the left guard spot locked up.

    Johnson missed much of the spring with a concussion, but he should be ready to go by the time the season rolls around. 

     

    Center 

    StarterMax Garcia

    BackupTrip Thurman

     

    Garcia started every game last season on the left side of the line and has made a positive transition to center. He looked really comfortable at the position during the spring game and should only get better with more reps in the fall.

    Thurman has switched from guard to backup center and seems to have the position if the season stared today. However, don't count out Cameron Dillard just yet.

     

    Right Guard

    StarterTrenton Brown

    BackupDrew Sarvary

     

    Brown started the final five games last season at right tackle, but his massive 6'8", 361-pound frame and brute strength makes him a much better fit at guard. He's going to thrive at his new position.

    Sarvary, a JUCO transfer, saw lots of reps in the spring at right guard, but there's no way at this point in the process that he's going to take the starting job away from Brown. 

     

    Right Tackle 

    StarterChaz Green

    BackupDavid Sharpe

     

    Green missed all of last season with an injury but proved throughout the spring that he may be the most talented offensive lineman on the roster. He's quick off the ball, moves his feet well and does a nice job of driving a defender off the ball. Sharpe is one of Florida's top 2014 recruits, and he'll be waiting in the wings. 

Defensive Line

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    Buck 

    StarterDante Fowler

    BackupAlex McCalister

     

    Fowler had 3.5 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss last season, but you get the feeling he was just scratching the surface. According to the Orlando Sentinel, Fowler has put down the fast food and is in the best shape of his life. Bad news for the rest of the SEC. McCalister has added weight and has the potential to be a great backup.  

     

    Nose Tackle 

    StarterLeon Orr

    BackupJay-nard Bostwick

     

    Although Orr missed spring practice with an injury, he's still a senior defensive lineman with great athleticism and explosion off the ball. His starting job is safe whether he practices or not.

    Bostwick was a player to watch this spring, and he did show flashes of greatness. He'll be a productive backup who will see playing time. 

     

    Defensive Tackle

    StarterDarious Cummings

    BackupCaleb Brantley

     

    Cummings started six games last season at defensive tackle and showed his playmaking ability by doing a little bit of everything. He should have no problem building on that success and becoming a key piece along this defensive front. Brantley is a redshirt freshman who has worked with Bostwick throughout the spring as two young guys who need to step up. He did enough so far to earn a backup role. 

     

    Defensive End 

    StarterJonathan Bullard

    BackupBryan Cox Jr.

     

    It remains a mystery whether Bullard will remain at defensive end or slide over to defensive tackle, a position he spent playing during the spring. Until it's confirmed that experiment will be permanent, we'll go ahead and pencil in Bullard at his old position. Very few players made as big a jump this spring as Cox, and you can expect him to see an expanded workload his junior season. 

Linebacker

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    Weak-Side Linebacker 

    StarterJarrad Davis

    BackupDaniel McMillian

     

    Davis made a splash late last season and showed that he deserves an expanded role this year as a starter. His playmaking ability and instincts will pay off in a big way.

    McMillian is a physical linebacker who saw very limited time last season, but he really had an impressive spring and is a player who will turn heads if his play continues to improve. 

     

    Middle Linebacker 

    StarterMichael Taylor

    BackupAntonio Morrison

     

    These two linebackers finished first and second last season in tackles, so it's fair to believe that it really doesn't matter who gets the starting job. Both are going to see plenty of playing time once again. I give the slight edge to Taylor due to one extra year of experience and finishing last season with six more tackles than Morrison. 

     

    Strong-Side Linebacker 

    StarterNeiron Ball

    BackupMatt Rolin

     

    Ball played in every game last season and started seven at linebacker. He brings athleticism and versatility to the defense with his speed and quickness. Rolin was expected to be an impact player last season before suffering an injury. The question is: Can he stay healthy this time around?

Secondary

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    Corner

    StarterVernon Hargreaves III

    BackupJ.C. Jackson

     

    If anybody is guaranteed a starting job, it is Hargreaves, who is one of the top cornerbacks in all of college football. He'll lock up every team's top receiver and make the quarterback throw elsewhere.

    Jackson is a 2014 recruit who has the ability to play either side of the ball. With the lack of experience at the position, he'll likely start his Florida career as a backup defensive back. 

     

    Free Safety 

    StarterJabari Gorman

    BackupNick Washington 

     

    Gorman started only five games last season at safety, but he still finished sixth on the team with 48 tackles. His senior leadership is only going to help a young but talented defensive backfield. Washington was another surprise player this spring and has earned himself the right to see the field quite a bit if his impressive play continues. 

     

    Strong Safety 

    StarterMarcus Maye

    BackupMarcell Harris

     

    Maye started two games at safety last season before losing his starting job. Although the coaching staff was hard on him throughout camp, there's really no better answer right now at strong safety than Maye.

    Harris is a physical safety who redshirted last year but had a solid spring-game performance and is quietly sliding up the depth chart.

     

    Corner 

    StarterJalen Tabor

    BackupDuke Dawson

     

    Both true freshmen are battling it out for the final cornerback spot. This is a position battle that won't be decided until likely the final day of fall camp, as both are extremely talented players and have tremendous upside. However, Tabor seems to be the more polished player and would likely get the nod if there was a game tomorrow. Still, stay tuned, as that could change at any moment.