OwlBytes: 2021 FAU Fall Camp August 12th - Outside Linebackers & Notes
Thursday marked the first day of full pads at camp for Florida Atlantic Football.
"We have to make the most out of the fully padded days," offensive line coach Ed Warinner said. "You can't evaluate offensive linemen in shorts." The same rings true for most other positions, specifically the outside linebacker position that has to be tested on their ability to break through the offensive line and get to the backfield.
The position group remains strong, returning all starters with the exception of Leighton McCarthy, but gained Chase Lasater, as he makes the transition from inside linebacker to outside linebacker.
Here is the third entry of our parliament Position Previews, featuring the outside linebackers, and our notes from Day six of camp and today's media availability.
Off The Edge
- Expected to Lead Ahman Ross: The redshirt junior made the switch from safety to outside linebacker last year and strived, putting up 58 total tackles, 5.5 tackles for a loss, and a sack. While being able to get into the backfield, Ross also kept his coverage ability from his time as a safety, deflecting three passes. His versatility makes him dangerous in both coverage and as a pass rusher, giving the Owls a lot to work with defensively. After striving in his new position despite a COVID-19 abbreviated Fall Camp, Ross (pictured) will be the leader of the position group next season and should improve even more as an outside linebacker.
- Keep An Eye On Chase Lasater: After leading FAU in total tackles last season with 72 as an inside linebacker, Lasater will be making the switch to outside linebacker. He has already shown the ability to get in the backfield, putting up a sack and five tackles for a loss, also forcing two fumbles. What fans should be keeping an eye on, however, is if he's able to put up that same production at the edge position. He has the skillset to be able to get into the backfield from the line of scrimmage, but it's the ability to cover a receiver off of the line rather than in space that will need to be worked on. With two weeks of camp left to go, he still has a lot of time to get used to the position, but he has the talent to get it done.
- Dark Horse Candidate Chris Jones: Of his nine total tackles last season, 4.5 of them were from a loss with 3.5 of them being sacks. What that says is that he showed an explosive ability to get to the quarterback in the limited playing time he had last season. He came off of the bench for the majority of the season last year but shined when his number was called, having the ability to put pressure on the quarterback. He proved his worth too, drawing a start in the Montgomery Bowl and adding a tackle. With McCarthy out of the picture, Jones will likely see the field more often, look for him to become an even bigger part of the Owls' defense next season.
OwlBytes for August 12th
- Nick Tronti Gets Early First-String Reps To start day six of camp, Nick Tronti was running with the first-string offensive line to kick things off. He looked comfortable in the pocket, being very precise on his passes and showing explosiveness in the run game. It's still too early to tell who's winning the starting job, but Tronti looks to be one of the early favorites.
- Mitchell-Paden Receives More Reps in Two TE Sets Zaire Mitchell-Paden appears to be one of the front runners in the race for the starting tight end position. The Owls have frequently featured him in two tight end sets, with Rahmod Smith being on the field with him during passing downs and Adam Boselli on the field during rushing situations. Through the first week of camp, Smith and Mitchell-Paden have impressed the coaching staff more than Boselli has so far, with that duo looking more likely to be the duo at the top of the depth chart at the start of the season.
- Andre Lamas Emerges As Potential Center Option During his media availability this morning, offensive line coach Ed Warriner mentioned Andre Lamas as a possible option at the center position. According to Warriner, Nick Weber is the front runner, with Frederico Maranges likely being the number two after missing part of Spring camp. "They are very smart football players," Warriner said. "they're good at understanding what they see and making calls in the right blocking schemes, so I feel good about that."
DL Evan Anderson, Coach Kevin Patrick, DL Ryan Veingrad, OL Nick Weber, Coach Ed Warinner headline Video Play.
OwlBytes: 2021 FAU Fall Camp August 10th - Wide Receivers & Notes
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2021 FAU Football Fall Camp Discussion
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- The QB battle is clearly between Perry and Tronti both are pretty even in terms of running the O. MJJ had flashes very impressive but you can tell heís still a bit raw. Taggert Jr appears to be a distant 4th for the job. Continued struggles with accuracy are prevalent
- While it appears that Posey is primarily taking Reps at WR, he had a few snaps at QB on some designed runs will be interesting to see how they find ways to use him. You all know how much I love his upside but it appears his future is best set as a general athlete we can get on the field and in space.
- The O-Line looked really good and I think Johnny Ford is by far our best RB but, The Defense was looking scary good. A lot of flying to the ball group tackles and hard hits. KeKeís return and influence is noticeable.
- I saw more drops by the WRs than I anticipated. You would think with the experience we have coming back that they would be sure handed but quite a few times I saw the group as a whole drop a few easy ones. TEs look very improved and Zaire Mitchell might be our best target for who ever wins the QB job.
We mentioned in our story today by @ColbyDGuy that @ChaseLasater is a player to keep up with this season, especially given his tenacity. The Owls' D is looking primed to be one of the best #CUSA has to offer and - if all goes well - could be THE BEST. 🌴🏈🌴 pic.twitter.com/cBtCiU25Hd— FAU Owl's Nest (@FAU_Owls_Nest) August 13, 2021