Preview 2018: Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

Preview 2018: Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

2018 Preview

Preview 2018: Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

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What You Need To Know About The Middle Tennessee Offense

–  Get ready for something special. Middle Tennessee has always had a solid offense under head man Rick Stockstill, but offensive coordinator Tony Franklin’s attack all works when the parts are in place. Last season, head coach’s son QB Brent Stockstill got hurt, and star WR Richie James was out from the start, and the production wasn’t there like it should’ve been. This year … look out.

Eight starters are back, almost everyone is back who caught a pass and gained a rushing yard – there aren’t any major losses. Three all-star caliber starters are back on the line, and Stockstill returns.

– Losing James last year stunk, and now he’s gone early to the NFL, but it allowed others to rise up and get in some work. Now, the receiving trio of Ty Lee, Patrick Smith, and CJ Windham should blow up as long as Stockstill is in one piece. This should be among the most effective passing games among the Group of Five teams.

– Yeah, there’s talent up front, but the blocking has to be better. Robert Behanan is a terrific tackle to work around, and Chandler Brewer is a good guard, but the run blocking was mediocre and there were way too many plays made behind the line. As long as the pass protection is solid, the Blue Raiders will be great, because …

Biggest Key To The Middle Tennessee Offense

Brent Stockstill has to stay healthy. The 6-0, 221-pound lefty has been hurt for long stretches over each of the last two seasons, and it showed. The Blue Raiders went 2-4 when he was out after leading the way to a win over Syracuse – they beat UAB and scare FAU more if he’s playing. When he came back? 4-1 with a bowl victory.

Granted, the schedule eased up, and he threw a few too many picks late, but he’s the offense, and he’s the season. The O line only gave up 25 sacks last season, but with veteran backup John Urzua retiring from football, the line has to be even better to keep the main man upright.

NEXT: Defense Breakdown, Top Players, Final Prediction & What Will Happen

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