Can the Aggies Have Solid Interior Line Play?
The next step inside is the guards. Typically, these guys are shorter than the tackles, a step or two slower, but better run blockers and more powerful. Their job is to move the big 300 pound plus defensive tackles off the line of scrimmage in order for the running back to find lanes. Last year, Colton Prater and Connor Lanfear saw much of the action inside. As we all remember, Trayveon Williams saw plenty of holes opened up by these two and had a great year.
This year, there have been reports of Prater moving inside and being replaced by Erik McCoy (6-foot-4, 305 pounds), a redshirt sophomore who was named to the SEC All-Freshman team as a center last year. So, he’s going to start at one of the two spots, and probably be very good again.
On the other side, we have Connor Lanfear returning to his favored right guard spot. Lanfear (6-foot-6, 315 pounds) will be coming back from a knee injury against Mississippi State. He is a junior, and should be a strong point along the front.
Backing these two guys up will probably be some of the new faces from the recruiting class of 2015 and 2016. Look for some of the backup tackles to swing inside for reps, as well as Ryan McCollum and Jared Hocker to get some experience. Barring injuries, guard play should be a bright spot on the line, and one that will be good going forward. Next year, both Lanfear and Praeter will probably be coming back, and it sets the Aggies up in a good position to have great, experienced line play in 2018 and beyond.