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Depth Charge - Treading Water

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This Saturday should allow the team to test its depth in game conditions. If it doesn't, we may be floating in the vast sea without much of a chance - but at least we have the booze!

Johnny Be Good.  Please.
Johnny Be Good. Please.
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Vanderbilt released its week three depth chart on Tuesday.  To the chagrin of those murmuring the need to see what other options can do, Coach Mason has stayed constant with Johnny McCrary at QB1.  McCrary's struggles with decision making and turnovers may be due to execution issues or a deeper lack of composure.  If he cannot come out fast and make good decisions, we may see Wade Freebeck take some snaps.  Right or wrong, such a move, outside of a blowout, will generate the ire of many in the fan base and the media's bemusement that Mason just cannot stick with a QB.

Depth Chart changes from last week:

Offense

WR: Kris Kentera and Latevious Rayford are back battling for the starting WR2.  With seven receptions last week, it is surprising that Rayford is not inked into the starting spot. We should see plenty of both and then some. It would also appear that Pinkney is gone for another week, though he didn't appear on the week one depth chart despite earning playing time against Western Kentucky.

O-Line: The O-Line has, to say the least, under-performed through the first two games.  What was unclear was who would step up to take the reigns. Blake Fromang is out at right tackle and true freshman Justin Skule will take his place. Skule has a ton of talent and a good game could cement his role there. In addition, it would appear that Delando Crooks is fully healthy again. He is listed as and "or" with Barrett Gouger.

Defense

There are no changes in the starting lineup on the defensive side of the ball. After giving up 17 points to UGA (the other 14 coming via a blown punt coverage and a INT for a TD), the defense is meeting its expectations.  One note is the unfortunate injury to Harding Harper.  This thrust Jordan Griffin into the LB rotation as a true freshman so we should see him playing more this game to get more experience.

Additionally, while Emmanuel Smith was not dressed for last week, he is still listed as the one of the two Nickel Safety starters along with Arnold Tarpley and has moved into an "Or" position as the 2nd string Strong Safety.

New True Freshman who played last week:

ILB:  Jordan Griffin

Injury Report:

Harding Harper

Jared Pinkney

What to Look For This Week:

Josh Crawford: If the game gets out of hand quickly and Crawford remains on the sideline, it may signal that that Coach Derek Mason is going to try and keep that red shirt on for as long as possible.

WR Rotation and Targets: We are still looking for playmakers on the outside.  We need to see whether Sherfield can be the guy or if Rayford can step up.

TE Play: Steven Scheu's play has been lacking so far this season. If he or Marcus cannot get themselves straightened out, we may have bigger struggles in the red zone.