Welcome everyone to the latest edition of the LSU position preview!
For the last two weeks, we’ve talked about two positions that the Tiger faithful are familiar with. They all know Danny Etling and Derrius Guice. However, when it comes to the position of wide receiver, there seems to be a lot of question marks on the field.
Without further ado, let’s dive right into the preview!
The Tigers are losing a pair of players in Malachi Dupre and Travin Dural. Both of these wide receivers combined to account for 38 percent of LSU’s passing game in 2016.
Dural, a Breaux Bridge native, was signed on as an undrafted free agent by the New Orleans Saints while Dupre was picked up in the 7th round by the Green Bay Packers.
When it comes to returning players that the Tigers are looking to make an impact, you have to first take a look at DJ Chark. The senior had 466 receiving yards and three touchdowns last season.
The expectations for Chark are to have a similar role that Dural had last season and help lead this team into a new era of offense for LSU. However, when you look at the rest of the players at the position, there’s not a whole lot of experience coming back.
You’ve got Russell Gage coming back but he only had five catches for 62 yards and one TD last year and will need to prove quite a bit in his senior season to show up on the depth chart.
There’s also Dee Anderson and Drake Davis that many are looking at to compete for a spot towards the top of the depth chart. However, they’re only sophomores and didn’t make much of a dent in terms of stats. They will need to show up during camp with a few freshmen that could make waves in 2017.
The Other Guys:
Speaking of the freshmen, you’ve got to think that Racey McMath and Mannie Netherly will be the players to watch at the wide receiver position. When it comes to Netherly, he was considered to be one of the top prospects for the 2017 class and has a lot of skills that LSU can use to the fullest extent.
You can say the same for McMath, but it’s all about how he transitions into a different position. He spent his high school career as a quarterback, but his speed is what attracted LSU to the New Orleans native. Keep an eye on him to surprise.
While the wide receiver corps in terms of experience is thin, you have to think that this is an athletic bunch. If I were projecting a depth chart right now, DJ Chark and Russell Gage are WR1 and WR2 respectively and Mannie Netherly is WR3. Dee Anderson and Drake Davis have a hill to climb because of the freshmen that are coming into the program.
Matt Canada’s new offense will revolve around Derrius Guice, but expect this group of wideouts to look just as good.