It’s not a coincidence that the teams being picked to have the best seasons in the SEC also have the best offensive lines.
Four teams stand out heading into the fall, yet even they struggled at times last season, especially in red zone/short-yardage situations.
Georgia returns four of its five starters, with Andrew Thomas and Isaiah Wilson the anchors at the tackle spots. Solomon Kindley is back at left guard, with Ben Cleveland at right guard. The line averages 6-5, 320 pounds.
Alabama will be comparable in that regard, especially if true freshman Evan Neal (6-7, 360) wins the left guard job during fall camp. Alex Leatherwood (6-6, 310) moves back to left tackle after filling in at right guard, where former starting right tackle Matt Womack (6-7, 325) will likely start the season, and Jedrick Wills (6-5, 316) is set at right tackle.
The teams to watch will be LSU and Auburn as both lines return essentially intact. However, neither unit was a particular strength for their teams last season. Both should be better, but how much they improve could go a long way in determining their team’s fortunes this season.
Teams to watch: Florida, South Carolina, Missouri
This is the fifth story in a summer Friday series, ranking the top SEC teams position by position.