Depth Chart Offense

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Last updated: 03/24/2014 12:01 PM
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Football
A Closer Look at the OSU Spring Depth Chart on Offense
By Tony Gerdeman

COLUMBUS, Ohio — With five spring practices in the books for the Ohio State Buckeyes, now would be a good time to take a closer look at the depth chart to see who is moving up, and who is holding steady.

A couple of caveats, however, as players rotate in and out quite a bit, and jobs are still very much open. We also aren't breaking the receivers down to the X and Y base because people are playing in more than one spot.

What follows is based on what we have seen in practice to this point.
 
Offense
QB #12 Cardale Jones  rSo
Jones has taken the bulk of the snaps with the first team. He's had some accuracy problems in his last two outings, but has a huge arm. He is still a strong runner, and has also displayed some quickness to go with his 6-foot-5 250-pound frame.
#16 J.T. Barrett rFr
Barrett is getting every scrimmage snap that Jones isn't, but he is definitively with the twos. Even in a black no-contact jersey, he has shown some speed in running plays. He's been pretty accurate on short throws, but like Jones has had some issues downfield.
#13 Stephen Collier Fr
From what we've seen Collier isn't receiving any snaps in the scrimmaging portion of practice, which was the same situation for both Jones and Barrett as true freshmen before him. He has shown some nice touch downfield in his limited reps, however.
#5 Braxton Miller (Injured) Sr
Miller is out following shoulder surgery. He is not expected to be limited this summer. It shouldn't need to be said, but he will jump right back into his starting spot once he is ready.
 
 
RB #15 Ezekiel Elliott So
Elliott began the spring behind Rod Smith, though it was probably more of a 1a and 1b situation. On Saturday, Elliott only worked with the first team while we were watching. His quickness and speed separate him from everybody else.
#7 Rod Smith rSr
Smith has mostly been repping with the first team this spring, but has also taken snaps with the twos, as have all of the running backs because there is no "third team". Running backs coach Stan Drayton said that Smith is finally learning how to use his power and strength when running the ball.
#25 Bri'onte Dunn rSo
Dunn has mostly been with the twos, but has also gotten plenty of snaps with the ones. He was involved in goal line action with the ones on Saturday. He has shown some burst in the little we have seen, including a 50-yard run following a shovel pass last Thursday.
#28 Warren Ball rSo
Ball has been with the twos mainly. He's a talented runner in open space, but there hasn't been much of that yet as the pads have only recently gone on.
#4 Curtis Samuel (Injured) Fr
Samuel was only healthy for the beginning of spring camp. He flashed a couple of moves early, but tweaked a hamstring. The staff obviously wants to get a look at what he can do with his speed, but he's just not able to do that right now.


HB #2 Dontre Wilson So
Wilson has probably been the most consistent play maker of camp to this point. That may be partly due to the fact that he runs shorter routes, which makes them easier to complete. He has not been involved in the running game at all from what we have seen.
#17 Jalin Marshall (Injured) rFr
Marshall looked very effective in the slot in the first practice of the spring, leaving linebackers and safeties chasing him, but his spring is now over following surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. He'll be fine in six weeks or so.


WR #9 Devin Smith Sr
While receivers coach Zach Smith has said that he has no starters in his room, Devin Smith is the only receiver who has worked just with the ones from what we've seen. He was much more active last spring, but the quarterback situation may be contributing to his muted performance so far. The good news for OSU is that he catches the balls that come to him.
#3 Michael Thomas rSo
Thomas has been repping with the ones throughout and has made a few catches that showcase his reach and body control. He looks like he will certainly be a redzone option this season.
#1 Johnnie Dixon Fr
The longer the spring goes on, the more snaps with the ones that Dixon receives. He struggled a bit in the opening practice, but has been consistently sure-handed since then. So far he has been the only receiver used in the jet sweep plays.
#84 Corey Smith rJr
Smith was the star of the first day of practice, making difficult catches down the sideline repeatedly. He had a hamstring issue last week, which may be contributing a bit to Johnnie Dixon's increased playing time. Smith was back on Saturday, but was relatively quiet.
#89 Jeff Greene rJr
Greene has made plays in the two full practices that we have gotten to watch. He has shown tremendous body control and being 6-foot-5, he is able to outleap defenders. They have also run a few quick screens with him, which is usually good for some easy yards given his size and strength.
#3 Frank Epitropoulos rSo
Epitropoulos has mixed in with the twos in limited reps.
#6 Evan Spencer (Injured) Sr
Spencer is out for the spring recovering from a leg injury suffered in the Orange Bowl. He was fully dressed on Saturday, but spent his time coaching up his teammates like Johnnie Dixon.
#82 James Clark (Injured) rFr
Clark is not yet up to full speed following his leg injury last year. He is participating in some drills, however. He's just not yet ready for any scrimmaging.


TE #81 Nick Vannett rJr
Vannett has been with the ones exclusively while Jeff Heuerman works his way back from a broken nose. Linebacker Joshua Perry was singing Vannett's praises on Saturday for the way he has played this spring.
#85 Marcus Baugh rFr
Baugh has been with the twos, as everybody has moved up one spot with Heuerman's injury. He has been a difficult cover at times down the seam.
#8 J.T. Moore rSr
We haven't seen much from Moore, who is more of a blocking tight end. As more of the offense gets implemented, perhaps he will see an increase in action.
#86 Jeff Heuerman (Injured) Sr
Heuerman is the unquestioned starter at tight end, and when he's healthy, he'll be back in the mix. With that said, I think Vannett will still get reps with the ones here and there, as Heuerman doesn't necessarily need them.


LT #68 Taylor Decker Jr
Decker is now the unquestioned leader of the offensive line. He has been solid while scrimmaging, and is batting about .500 against defensive end Joey Bosa in one-on-ones when we've been watching.
#66 Kyle Dodson rSo
Dodson isn't a threat to take Decker's job, but the staff would sure like for him to provide a push. He should improve greatly this spring as the second-team offensive line is generally going against the first-team defense.


LG #73 Antonio Underwood rJr
Underwood was one of the Buckeyes' top eight offensive linemen prior to tearing his ACL a year ago. He has slipped right back into his role as one of the team's best interior linemen.
#51 Joel Hale Sr
Hale is working mostly with the twos. He may provide more of a competition the more he gets used to playing offense instead of defense.
#57 Chase Farris (Injured) rJr
Farris is out with an ACL tear that he suffered last season. Had he been healthy, he would certainly be in the mix for a starting job. He should be one to watch during fall camp.


C #50 Jacoby Boren Jr
Boren is splitting first-team reps with Billy Price, but from what we've seen the snaps are split probably 65/35 in favor of Boren. 
#54 Billy Price rFr
Price has gotten quite a few reps with the ones, and it's clear that this is a competition. He is still running second at the moment, however. He may be the strongest player on the team, which will always bode well for an interior lineman.


RG #65 Patrick Elflein rSo
Elflein is one of two offensive linemen on the team (Taylor Decker) who pretty much has his job locked up. The expectations are high for Elflein this year, and his performance so far doesn't signal a change in those expectations.
#55 Tommy Brown rJr
Brown is currently providing depth at right guard, and with Elflein ahead of him, that's really all that any right guard is going to be asked to do.
#64 Marcelys Jones Fr
Jones has gotten quite a few reps with the twos, and has had a few nice moments. As a true freshman who is already enrolled, it will be interesting to see if his redshirt gets burned this year.


RT #76 Darryl Baldwin rSr
Some were surprised when Urban Meyer said Baldwin would start the spring as the #1 right tackle, but he has been at the top of the depth chart throughout practice so far without any change. He has not been a turnstile, which many may have expected.
#75 Evan Lisle rFr
Lisle has been with the twos pretty exclusively. He is getting tested, but has shown the mobility to take a speed rusher out of the play.
#71 Kyle Trout Fr
Trout's reps have been limited, which isn't a surprise for a true freshman. 

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