Three to Buy
If Christine Michael is all the way back, he's one of the nation's premiere running backs.
Usually you buy low and sell high, and to many it might be hard for Porter’s stock to go up much more after his All-Big 12 performance in 2012, but this season I think Porter is going to develop into a solid all around linebacker. More than just a pass rusher, people are going to see the Porter has the ability to play in space and his value as a physical leader on this defense can’t be overstated.
A&M fans already know Michael’s true value, but it currently sits well below where it will be if he stays healthy this fall. This is a high risk buy, because Michael has to prove on the field that he’s all the way back after his second career season-ending injury, but if he does he’ll be worth the pickup.
Mathis could be A&M’s single most important defensive player this season. At no other position on the defense is the dropoff as big from number one to number two as it at defensive tackle. Mathis is going to be relied on heavily this season, and I think he’s going to be up to the challenge.
Three to Sell
It's going to be almost impossible for Ryan Swope to duplicate his numbers from 2011.
This isn’t a sell because Swope isn’t going to be productive, but because the odds of him being as productive this season as he was a year ago are slim. He had a quarterback that he was perfectly in sync with, a team that lacked other consistent options at wide receiver and an offense that allowed him to flourish in the Big 12. This year, the Aggies face tougher defenses in the SEC, have a freshman quarterback and are working in an offense that will spread the ball around more. Swope might actually be better than a year ago after losing some weight and getting quicker, but there’s almost no way that his numbers will be.
Dustin Harris (as a corner)
Dustin Harris is going to be in the corner rotation, but the more meaningful snaps this season will probably go to sophomore corners Deshazor Everett and Floyd Raven or newcomers De’Vante Harris and Tramain Jacobs. Dustin Harris lacks the physicality to consistently go man-to-man with SEC receivers, something that’s going to be important in this defensive scheme. However, that doesn’t mean I’m selling him as a punt returner, where he should be among the nation’s best this season.
Last season McNeal went into the year as one of the hottest players on the roster and looked poised for a big junior season. But injuries caused him to miss the final eight games of the season and he ended the season with just 8 catches for just over 100 yards. Now McNeal is facing pressure from Malcome Kennedy at Thomas Johnson for playing time. That’s why even though is stock is a relative unknown, it’s going to be hard for McNeal to be a consistent threat for the Aggies.
Three to Hold
Nwachukwu has been working hard this fall, but he’s being pushed by some talented players. At his position, Sabian Holmes has been steadily improving since he started at A&M, and he’s been one of the most talked about players behind the scenes in A&M’s camp. However, Nwachukwu is still a veteran, and his consistency is why he’ll still get plenty of reps at receiver.
A&M’s senior punter may not have the biggest leg in camp, but his consistency is probably going to win him the punting job unless Kaser shows some improvement in that area over the final week. Epperson has done better with directional kicking as well, something that’s been heavily stressed by the coaching staff. However, there's no doubt that Kaser has a stronger leg and if he can get the basics down he could be the man at punter.
If you bought Steven Campbell stock and are still holding it, then you might as well stay along for the ride. One thing is for sure, when Campbell is on the field, the Aggie defense has a different look and feel. He’s a physical leader in the secondary, and with Deshazor Everett to spell him this season, perhaps he’ll be able to stay on the field longer. If he can, Campbell is one of the best players on the A&M defense, and could have a breakout season. But, that’s a huge if.