Below is my likely to be ultimately wrong prediction for what the Pack’s two deep will look like next season. Here is the 2017 chart for reference.
Quarterback: Ryan Finley (Sr) - Jalan McClendon (Sr)
Notes: If Finley decides to return, that should allow freshman Devin Leary to redshirt. Should Finley leave though, don’t be surprised if Leary is the best quarterback on the roster.
Running Back: Nyheim Hines (Sr) - Reggie Gallaspy (Sr)
Notes: Hines could be even more special next year behind a veteran O-line. If Hines were to leave for the pros, Gallaspy would soak up most the carries barring a surprise from one of the guys vying for the second spot, which includes redshirt freshmen Erin Collins and Nakia Robinson and highly touted true freshman Ricky Person.
Tight End: Dylan Autenrieth (So) - Cary Angeline (So)
Notes: The Angeline pickup is exciting because the tight end position is lacking after the departure of Cole Cook. Autenrieth played this year so he’ll get the edge, but these two could flip spots.
X: Kelvin Harmon (Jr) - C.J. Riley (So)
Z: Stephen Louis (Sr) - Emeka Emezie (So)
S: Jakobi Meyers (Jr) - Maurice Trowell (Sr)
Notes: Best receiving corps in NC State history? It could be.
Left Tackle: Tyler Jones (Sr) - Philip Walton (Jr)
Left Guard: Terronne Prescod (Sr) - Aaron Wiltz (Jr)
Center: Garrett Bradbury (Sr) - Harrison Gee (So)
Right Guard: Joe Sculthorpe (So) - Joshua Fedd-Jackson (So)
Right Tackle: Will Richardson (Sr) - Justin Witt (So)
Notes: Barring Richardson leaving early, State only has to replace right guard Tony Adams. Sculthorpe played as a backup all over the interior line and would be the early favorite to get that spot. Sculthorpe would also likely be the guy to move to center if Bradbury was unavailable. Fedd-Jackson would likely backup both guard spots.
DE: Darian Roseboro (Sr) - Deonte Holden (Sr)
DT: Eurndraus Bryant (Sr) - Grant Gibson (Fr)
DT: Ben Frazier (So) - Alim McNeil (Fr)
DE: James Smith-Williams (Jr) - Tyrone Riley (Jr)
Notes: The second unit from this year simply slides into starting roles next year. Tyrone Riley will most definitely be an important part of the rotation as well. Everything after that is pretty much just a total guess. Gibson has a good chance with a redshirt year under his belt already and Deonte Holden might finally get on the field if he can stay healthy. Juco transfer Joe Babros might be involved in things as well. A lot of opportunity for new faces to crack the rotation here.
MLB: Germaine Pratt (Sr) - Louis Acceus (So)
WLB: Brock Miller (So) - Payton Wilson (Fr)
Notes: I fully expect this to be Pratt’s defense in 2018. He’ll lead the linebackers as the only one with any real experience and also the thing about how he’s really good. I fully expect Wilson to be a great player as well, but with him still recovering from injury and being a true freshman and all, I doubt he’ll be shoved into a starting role right away.
Nickel: Freddie Phillips (Jr) - Chris Ingram (So)
Notes: Phillips is back from injury and likely to earn the spot vacated by Shawn Boone.
Cornerback: Nick McCloud (Jr) - Kishawn Miller (Jr)
Cornerback: James Valdez (So) - Bryce Banks (So)
Notes: McCloud was CB3 on this year’s team and will slide right into a starting role for next year. The other spot is up for grabs and I’ll bet on James Valdez, a guy who came out of a high school with a more polished game and got on the field early last year before missing the rest of the season. According to Pack Pride’s Steve Williams, Juco Kishawn Miller was recruited with the intent of him contributing early and the Pack may need it. Chris Ingram might also slide over if necessary.
Safety: Jarius Morehead (Jr) - Stephen Griffin (Jr)
Safety: Dexter Wright (Sr) - Tim Kidd-Glass (Jr)
Notes: State actually returns starters at safety, which will be a rarity this coming year. Morehead and Wright are both upper classmen and should start, while Kidd-Glass started a bunch of games last year and will certainly be on the field. Tennessee transfer Stephen Griffin brings even more experience to the most veteran group on the defense.
Starters: 11 seniors 6 juniors 5 sophomores 0 freshmen
Backups: 4 seniors 6 juniors 9 sophomores 3 freshmen