C&M Roundtable: Predict Auburn’s Starting Offensive Line in 2020

Monday, June 29, 2020

C&M Roundtable: Predict Auburn’s Starting Offensive Line in 2020

Auburn v Mississippi State Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

Auburn returns plenty of production at the skill positions but major questions surround the offensive line.

In 2020, Auburn returns its starting quarterback, top 3 receivers from last season and a running back room loaded with blue chip talent. But none of that will matter if the big fellas up front don’t get the job done.

Auburn’s offense is predicated on first being able to run the ball effectively between the tackles. When that’s taken away, Auburn’s offense really struggles. Over the past couple of seasons Auburn’s front has struggled to get consistent movement up front against better defenses. While Chad Morris’s arrival should hopefully help Auburn better open up the passing attack, the Tigers still have to find a way to more consistently get first downs on 3rd & short.

Four starters from last year’s unit are gone, all multi year starters for the Tigers. It will be Jack Bicknell’s job to find the best five amongst a group of largely unproven talent. Your brilliant staff here at College & Magnolia attempted to take their best guesses at how things will shake out this fall.

Nick Brahms - 7 Votes

Unsurprisingly, Brahms was the consensus pick to win the starting center job. The former 4-star prospect has been inserted into the starting lineup mid season each of the last two seasons but now the rising junior heads into fall camp the clear leader of this group up front. With a new offensive line coach, could Auburn explore sliding Brahms to a guard spot if someone like Kamaar Bell or Avery Jernigan impresses? Sure but odds are good when Auburn opens the 2020 season it will be Brahms once again snapping the ball to Bo Nix.

Austin Troxell - 7 Votes

Maybe somewhat surprisingly, C&M contributors were in agreement that the left tackle spot is Troxell’s to lose. The biggest question facing the Madison, AL native isn’t about his overall talent but his health. He’s suffered three major knee injuries the last five years. If he really is 100% and can stay healthy, hard not to see him anchoring the left side of Auburn’s line in 2020.

Brodarious Hamm - 7 Votes

The Hamm hype continues to grow. Despite having never having started a game for the Tigers, buzz abounds that the big man is poised for a breakout junior season. His journey has been remarkable having to beat Hodgkin lymphoma before he even made it to campus. Now a redshirt junior, Hamm is set to make an impact somewhere along Auburn’s offensive line. Most of us voted that Hamm will be a tackle but he started his career at guard and could slide back inside if someone emerges at tackle this fall.

Brandon Council - 6 Votes

Auburn has been able to overcome their OL recruiting woes by making use of the transfer market. Darius James, Austin Golson, Kasey Dunn and Jack Driscoll are all recent examples of the Tigers filling needs with players that initially signed elsewhere. This offseason, Auburn landed former Akron starter Brandon Council who will have two years of eligibility remaining as a Tiger. He will reportedly get a shot at tackle but most seem to believe his future is in the interior of the line.

Keiondre Jones - 4 Votes

There was surprising consensus at four of the OL spots but where things got more interesting was at the guard spot opposite Council. Jones is a former top 150 prospect who was making some noise in fall camp before a head injury sidelined him. Buzz returned during bowl practice when he reportedly paired with Brodarious Hamm to open up some holes on the right side of Auburn’s line. The former Callaway standout will be in a heated battle at either guard spot this fall. It would not be surprising to see him emerge victorious.

Tashawn Manning - 3 Votes

Like Hamm, Manning had to beat cancer before he could suit up for the Tigers. Manning was diagnosed with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia as a senior in high school. When he finally arrived on campus, Manning started on the defensive side of the ball before switching to offense last spring. Auburn has had tremendous success switching defensive lineman to the offensive side of the ball in the past with Prince Tega Wanogho being the most recent example. Is Manning poised to be the next?

Kilian Zierer - 1 Vote

There was surprisingly little hype around Auburn’s two JUCO offensive tackles amongst the C&M braintrust but Zac was bold enough to predict one of them cracks the starting lineup. Zierer was one of the top JUCO tackles in the country last fall but his season was cut short with an ACL injury. If he’s back to full strength he’s got the raw ability to make some noise at one of the tackle spots.

Well you’ve seen our take, now it’s time to see what you think. Did our thinking line up with what many of you see happening or are we horribly wrong? Vote on who you think starts on Auburn’s offensive line this fall.

War Eagle!

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