BY JASON VONDERSMITH/PORTLAND TRIBUNE/Who is likely to start and back up at each position for the Ducks next season

QB: * Justin Herbert, junior

Depth: Braxton Burmeister saw some action and helped beat Cal and Utah, but he'll be pressed for playing time by incoming freshman Tyler Shough of Chandler, Ariz., who says he'll enroll early. The Ducks need to upgrade behind Herbert.

RB: Tony Brooks-James, senior

Depth: Darrian Felix also will get playing time, and the Ducks might work in CJ Verdell and Cyrus Habibi-Likio as they move on from the Royce Freeman era. Coach Mario Cristobal wants to be a power running team, so a power back needs to be developed.

WR:* Dillon Mitchell, junior; * Johnny Johnson III, sophomore; Brenden Schooler, junior

Depth: The Ducks have to develop some receivers, as the recruiting pipeline appears to have been hurt by Oregon's coaching upheaval. Malik Lovette and Taj Griffin should be factors; Darrian McNeal and Jaylon Redd got '17 playing time, and Alex Ofodile and Daewood Davis could contribute.

TE: * Jacob Breeland, junior

Depth: Cam McCormick gained increased playing time in '17, made some blocks and caught some balls, and Ryan Day also played some snaps. Player development is paramount in the offseason.

Line: LT — * Brady Aiello, junior; LG — * Shane Lemieux, junior; C — * Jake Hanson, junior; RG — * Calvin Throckmorton, junior; RT — George Moore, sophomore

Depth: The Ducks lose Tyrell Crosby but otherwise move on with a very good O-line (presumably working in Moore). Jacob Capra, Alex Forsyth and Sam Poutasi will need to step up as quality depth.

PK — Adam Stack, sophomore

Depth: Stack replaces all-time leading kicker Aidan Schneider (from Grant High), but he takes the role with some credentials as one of 2016's best prep kickers. Walk-on kickers will vie to back up.


Line: DE — * Jalen Jelks, senior; DT — * Jordan Scott, sophomore; DE — Austin Faoliu, sophomore

Depth: Quality backups still have to be developed to complement the very good starters. Drayton Carlberg and Gary Baker have played, and freshman Popo Aumavae and Hunter Kampmoyer are candidates.

LB: OLB — * Justin Hollins, senior; JACK — * Troy Dye, junior; MIKE — Kaulana Apelu, senior; DUCK — * La'Mar Winston, junior

Depth: Quality starters are here (including Apelu, who started before being injured), but backups need to be determined among Sampson Niu, Fotu T. Leiato, Keith Simms, Blake Rugraff, Isaac Slade-Matautia, Gus Cumberlander and Bryson Young.

DB: * Ugochukwu Amadi, senior; Brady Breeze, sophomore; *Thomas Graham, sophomore; Deommodore Lenoir, sophomore

Depth: All four projected starters got ample playing time in '17, as did Nick Pickett, Mattrell McGraw, Billy Gibson. Competition should be good again in the secondary.

P: * Adam Stack, sophomore

Depth: Blake Maimone punted in the first game, and then Stack took over. Maimone presumably will challenge Stack, who could do double duty in '18.

KR: * Tony Brooks-James (kickoff) and * Dillon Mitchell (punt) return, and Jaylon Redd figures to be in the mix.

LS: Tanner Carew, who has a Senior Bowl invite, moves on, so a new long snapper will have to be determined.

* returning starter

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