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Starting left tackle likely to be a true freshman

With the quarterback competition put to bed, now the depth chart moves to left tackle for Stanford football. Who will be blocking the blind side for Josh Nunes this year?

The competition seems to be down to the two true freshmen, Kyle Murphy and Andrus Peat.

“Our two freshmen have been better than we even thought,” Head Coach David Shaw said. “They have both shown they are ready to play. This week will tell a lot. It will be big this week to make sure they know everything that we need them to know. “

Stanford will continue to play more than five linemen per game so it would make some sense that one of the freshmen wins the job and the other goes into a rotation as the sixth and seventh player.

Murphy started on the right side to begin camp but he was able to pick up the intricacies of moving from the right to the left side without any issue and that got him into the competition. Peat missed a couple of days in practice with a thumb injury but has been back in the competition with a small cast on his hand.

The other open position on the offensive line seems to be leaning toward Kevin Danser. “He has had a really good training camp,” Shaw said.

Danser has been battling with Khalil Wilkes at right guard and true freshman Josh Garnett has been pressuring both of them as well. Shaw said Danser has the edge for now.

“We are going to need Khalil Wilkes to play for us this year,” Shaw said. “We are going to play extra offensive linemen so we are going to need eight or nine offensive linemen ready for each game. So guys who are not “starters” are still going to play a lot of football for us.”

A couple of other depth chart nuggets:

Jordan Richards leads the competition at strong safety. Shaw has liked what he has seen from him and Devon Carrington and whether the split time or one player goes the distance has yet to be determined. For now Richards has the edge.

Ed Reynolds has been “phenomenal” according to Shaw and you can look for him to start at strong safety.

Injury notes:

At this point Shaw says Ryan Hewitt status for game one is up in the air.

“Hewitt is doing well,” Shaw said. “He will be close to a game time decision for SJSU. If it is close at all we will probably hold him out. I told him we need him for the long haul. He is walking around with a bounce in his step trying to show me he is ready. He is a typical fullback. But we are going to be smart with him.”

Hewitt rolled his ankle on the first series of Sunday’s scrimmage.

Center Sam Schwartzstein also left the scrimmage with an ankle injury. Shaw said if today were game day, Schwartzstein would be in there. But since it is not, they are holding him out of a few more practices.


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