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Jan 19, 2022
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Football Preview: Offensive Line
Auburn's offensive line struggled at times last season, especially early on. Now with the same five starters from a year ago along the line, the unit will play an important role with a new starter at quarterback for Gus Malzahn's offense.

With Jarrett Stidham moving on to the NFL, the Tigers will have a new signal caller in 2019.

After a very competitive spring between four candidates, Malzahn and first-year offensive coordinator Kenny Dillingham have narrowed down the quarterback job to two, newcomer Bo Nix and redshirt freshman Joey Gatewood.

Nix and Gatewood will likely battle well into fall camp to start under center. Both lack experience but that doesn't mean the offense will be mediocre.

Offensive line coach J.B. Grimes witnessed his group of young men go through growing pains at the start of the 2018 season. The unit continued to jell and improve as the season progressed.

With so much experience returning and after a productive spring, the unit is expected to perform well which will help take some of the pressure off of the young starting quarterback.

Kaleb Kim is back to anchor the center position after making eight starts in 2018. Early-season injuries caused Kim to struggle and to lose the starting job to redshirt freshman Nick Brahms after the first three games.

Kim's return to the starting lineup in November helped Auburn's offense improve late in the season, including a dominating 63-14 victory over Purdue in the Music City Bowl in Nashville.

The unit got a big boost in January when left tackle Prince Tega Wanogho and left guard Marquel Harrell both decided not to bolt for the NFL and return to the Plains for the 2019 season.

Wanogho started all 13 games in 2018 and was the most consistent performer on Auburnís offensive line. Wanogho finished the regular season as the 17th-highest graded offensive lineman in FBS, according to Pro Football Focus analysis.

On the right side of the line, Mike Horton starts at guard and Jack Driscoll is back at the tackle position. Both started all 13 games in 2018.