clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

2015 Football Preview: Offensive Line

Carolina hopes an experienced offensive line will key the running and passing attack.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

There will be many familiar names on UNC's offensive line this season. And with that the Heels will hope to see the improvements that come from getting experience in Fedora's system, developing more strength as they get older and being comfortable with a consistent quarterback behind them. The key will be keeping the unit healthy and maximizing the experience.

Last year the Heels' offensive line went through growing pains, as you would expect from a young line that had to build chemistry with two quarterbacks who played inconsistent amounts. The Heels' line did have several good games but also ones where veteran players and highly touted recruits ran right through them on their way to Marquise Williams. The linemen will have spent this off-season watching film and working with Williams to sync up protection calls and improve their chemistry as a unit. The unit will also hopefully have bulked up some in the off-season so that they can be more physical in the run game. Fedora's system requires that his linemen be more mobile and smaller than the behemoths in traditional offenses like those in the SEC. So the largest improvements to look for in the line will be for the linemen to run block against larger defensive tackles while also being in shape and mobile enough to allow Fedora to use all of the tunnel screens and other unorthodox plays in his arsenal.

A large amount of Carolina's offensive success this year will be determined by its line play. Last year there were times where the line really let down the Carolina offense. The line allowed pressure to get to Williams frequently in a few games where he then had to rush his throws which led to poor decisions and negative outcomes for the Heels. There were also times when defensive tackles were able to strike through the middle of Carolina's offensive line to get runners behind the line of scrimmage. The goal for the line this year should be to improve their physicality in the run game while being more consistent in pass protection. This should allow Marquise Williams to make the most of his final year in Chapel Hill.