Coming off a Fiesta Bowl appearance, the Washington Huskies’ 2018 offense features a heavy dose of returners that should see UW contend for a College Football Playoff berth.
Washington is also reinforced with the No. 13 recruiting class in the nation, so the Huskies could get valuable snaps from reserves.
According to Adam Jude of the Seattle Times, seven starters on offense are projected to return in 2018.
With that’s let’s take a look at what the Huskies’ depth chart could look like this coming fall.
Starter: Jake Browning
Reserves: Jacob Eason, Jake Haener, Daniel Bridge-Gadd, Colson Yankoff, Jacob Sirmon
Notes: Browning is coming off a junior campaign that saw him throw for 2,719 yards and 19 touchdowns to just five interceptions. While not the electric playmaker under center many elite teams crave, Browning’s senior leadership and experience battling through a rigorous Pac-12 should give Washington plenty of security at the position.
In the Land of Jacob that is Washington’s quarterback roster, Georgia transfer Jacob Eason will add valuable depth behind Browning.
The interesting storyline behind the scenes will be the development of Yankoff and Sirmon, both incoming freshmen. Both are 4-star signees ranked in the top 100 of the 2018 class, and both could be in line to compete for the title of Browning’s heir apparent.
Starter: Myles Gaskin
Reserves: Salvon Ahmed, Sean McGrew
Notes: Perhaps the biggest acquisition for the Huskies in the offseason wasn’t a big-name recruit or a Power 5 transfer. Rather, it was Gaskin committing to his senior year at Washington. Gaskin had 1,380 yards rushing with 24 total touchdowns in 2017 and is the most dynamic offensive threat for the Huskies.
The depth behind Gaskin is a minor concern. With Lavon Coleman graduated, Salvon Ahmed and Sean McGrew are the top returners. The pair combined for just 447 yards rushing last season. Washington also only signed one running back in the 2018 class, 3-star Richard Newton.
Starters: Aaron Fuller, Andre Baccellia, Chico McClatcher
Reserves: Quinten Pounds, Ty Jones, Marquis Spiker, Trey Lowe
Notes: While the Huskies don’t necessarily lack depth at wideout, there’s no clear No. 1 target on the roster.
The loss of Dante Pettis could hurt the Huskies early as Browning now has to develop chemistry with a new corps of receivers. Aaron Fuller had the most catches and yards of any returning wide receiver, tallying 26 for 291 yards. Expect his production to increase exponentially.
A pair of 4-star wide receivers in the 2018 freshman class, Marquis Spiker and Trey Lowe could see immediate action as well if Washington is looking for an injection of energy.
Starter: Hunter Bryant
Reserves: Drew Sample, Jacob Kizer, Cade Cotton
The Huskies shouldn’t miss a beat at tight end.
Bryant, Washington’s second-leading receiver in 2017, tallied 331 yards receiving on 22 catches with a touchdown. Sample is more known for his ability as a blocker, giving Washington some dynamic options at the position. Sample had seven catches for 84 yards.
Starters: Trey Adams (LT), Luke Wattenberg (LG), Nick Harris (C), Devin Burleson (RG), Kaleb McGary (RT)
Reserves: Jesse Sosebee, Andrew Kirkland, Sam Taimani, Henry Roberts
Like most of its offense, Washington returns a slew of starters while also seeing some reinforcements in the trenches.
Among the biggest returners will be Trey Adams, who tore his ACL last year. If he returns to form, he could be the Pac-12’s best left tackle. That should force Luke Wattenberg, his replacement, back to guard while Nick Harris could move to center and replace the graduated Coleman Shelton. Kaleb McGary, who considered taking his talents to the NFL, returns to anchor the right side of the line.
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