Friday, June 30, 2006

The 2006 UW Offensive Tackles

If there is a single area where the balance of the season will fall upon it is the 2006 UW offensive line. Believe it or not the below average seniors who moved on last year might not be succeeded by better players in 2006. Toledo, and Meadow average? Well both had diminished career's at UW because of injuries. Both toughed it out, but neither reached thier potential despite still having an opportunity to play on Sunday.

The UW offensive line is still a total question mark factory going into 2006. The offensive tackle position is where some of the biggest question marks lie. Let's start with the best offensive lineman not on the team yet, Brandon Jefferson. This guy has NFL talent, and immediately would be the best OL on the team, but the JC recruit is a long shot to be eligible by August. Add this guy to the lineup and it changes the dimensions of what this offensive can do.

Well, lets get back to reality and deal with what we actually have.

The tackles most likely will be Ossai, Macklin, and Flowers, not a lot of depth here. Now White- Frisbee could move over here, the debate on that isn't over. Sir Mason joins the team, but like Atkin's he is a guy that is a redshirt candidate. He needs to put on weight to be a Pac Ten talent, but observers feel that he could play on Sunday's. Rosborough is another guy that has a future, he still needs another year of conditioning, but he is going to get some rep's this year. Erik Berglund is a dark horse to see considerable time this year. Sure he took a year and a half off, but Ty feels he can contribute this year. Like Shelton Sampson, having this guy back in the program is a plus just because it is another experienced body to practice against, and that can't be discounted. You can easily see that the absence of Jefferson will hurt this part of the team even though Ossai could be almost ready, bottom line is a redshirt frosh shouldn't be starting at OL in the Pac Ten.

Habben, and Tolar are the local recuits, the Huskies missed out on Schilling which hurts, but Lorenzo didn't close all the top guys right away, Ty will do better this year in state, it takes time to rebuild the base, and the trust, but I see it happening.

How will they play together?

Well, another year in Mike Denbrock's system should benefit all the lineman who haven't had that type of continuity in their college careers. Unfortunately Mike missed most of the Spring due to illness, and that can't be viewed as a positive. It was obvious that they struggled in his absence despite of the help of Kyle Benn. Macklin isn't a superstar, but he is a good fundemental OL with an upside. Ossai, and Flowers will battle for the other spot, but Flowers is actually more suited for inside. I frankly have expected more out of Flowers, I didn't expect Ossai to beat him out. If Jefferson make's it in, Flowers could move inside. Rosborough is going to get some reps, but conditioning will limit his contribution. Going into the season I would have to say this position is the weakest on the squad. Bowl eligibility hinges on growth and health at this position. Keep an eye on Erik Berglund, he could get meaningful minutes.

The consensus is if you add Jefferson to this group it changes the reality of everything, without him you have a very large learning curve, and unfortunately a likely fall off from last years performace is expected unless Ossai plays beyond his years. Not only will you have less talent and experience, you have less depth. The early prediction is an early fall of production from last years starters that should even out later in the season s more experience is gained.


hairofthedawg said...

My hopes for the OL are best described by hoping the DL can give them enough time to dominate via enthusiasm. They have to want it to succeed and it's likely they'll only do so by wearing the opponent down. Conditioning should be at an absolute premium this year. I hope I'm wrong, but not about the conditioning.



Health Insurance Expert said...

I think the tackles are a little iffy going into the season, but over time they should get better, but I would feel better if Jefferson could get into school.

hairofthedawg said...

know what you mean but I haven't read much that makes that seem likely...crossing fingers.