Auburn, Ala. (EETV) – With less than a week left until the regular season kickoff in Jordan-Hare Stadium, the Tigers have officially wrapped up their fall camp.
They have completed their dress rehearsal and the depth chart is to be set by August 29.
5 takeaways from Auburn Football preseason:
1) Stidham named starter
On August 14, Gus Malzahn announced that Baylor transfer Jarrett Stidham would be the starting quarterback against Georgia Southern. If you remember last season, the Tigers played a game of quarterback roulette. Malzahn constantly rotated between Sean White, Jeremy Johnson, and John Franklin III in the first few games of the season before somewhat settling on Sean White as the starter.
Once White became the starter for the Tigers, the team started playing more consistently and winning more games.
By naming Stidham the starter prior to the season, you should see a more consistent offense in Week 1, which will translate into a better-run offense. This will be a key factor once Auburn begins its SEC match-ups in Week 4.
2) JF3 transfers
Once Stidham was named the starter, backup quarterback/wide receiver John Franklin III announced he would be leaving the Tigers for FAU.
JF3 announced his transfer just days after Stidham was named the starter in an Instagram post, which is no longer available.
With his transfer, this solidified the consistency Malzahn is looking for this season.
If there was a chance for JF3 to get time in at quarterback this season, chances are he might have stayed. But, his departure from the team might suggest that Malzahn will be sticking with Stidham as the starter and keeping Sean White as the primary backup.
3) A United Team
With Malzahn announcing that Stidham would be the starter for the Tigers, many wondered what Sean White would do.
White backed his quarterback and announced he would be staying with the Tigers by tweeting “All in!”.
All in!! WarEagle— Sean White (@SeanWhiteAU) August 14, 2017
Other teammates took to social media to congratulate Stidham on becoming the starter, even some Tiger alum's showed their support.
Let's go JS8!!! @Jarrett_Stidham— Chandler Duke Cox (@chandlercox10) August 14, 2017
With White confirming his plan to stay with Auburn, I can see that this team is more united than before.
This team unity will be a key component throughout the season. I feel that the closer the team, the harder they play and the more they rally around each other.
4) Carlson just as impressive
If you could pick one part of last year’s Auburn football team to keep the same, what would you pick? Your answer is probably keeping Daniel Carlson as the main kicker and star player.
Carlson announced in the spring that he would be staying with Auburn for one more year instead of declaring for the NFL draft. Carlson could have easily been a top kicker in the 2017 NFL draft, but with him deciding to stay, the Tigers can only get better at special teams.
Carlson is more than likely preparing himself for the 2018 NFL draft, meaning he will improve from last years season, something that is hard to do.
Carlson has already been named an AP Preseason All-American, along with teammate Braden Smith.
Expect Carlson to play just as big of a role this season, but the catch is that he will be better than last season.
5) Redzone Offense = Success
Malzahn revealed that the team has been working on their red zone offense a lot this preseason. He has said, “to be one of the best you have to be able to run the ball in.” He also has looked back on past years and saw Auburn was “really good” when they were “really good in the red zone.”
There is no doubt the Tigers haven’t been as successful in the red zone the past few seasons. If you look at Auburn’s top point scorers last season, you will find that the top scorer was Carlson.
The Tigers are obviously looking to put more points on the board that are not field goals.
Expect Auburn to be a multi-threat offense this year that will give them the chance to throw the ball into the end zone or run it in with power backs Kamryn Pettway and Kerryon Johnson.