Projecting some of our position battles.

USA TODAY Sports

I will look at the position battles at WR, C, DL, MLB, and CB

Position battles on offense

WR: Number of slots available-1, possibly 2. Candidates- Jacoby Jones, Deonte Thompson, David Reed, LaQuan Williams, Tommy Streeter, Aaron Mellette, and Tandon Doss. Situation: We have a wide open battle at WR for Anquan Boldin's spot and possibly for the #3 spot because of Jacoby's consistency. The favorites for the spots, based on what I have heard, are Jacoby Jones, Tandon Doss, and Deonte Thompson. Jacoby had a role last year. Deonte is fast and a very hard worker. Doss has a lot of the qualities that Boldin had. Mellette has the physical tools to be a good possession receiver. I have not seen LaQuan or Reed at WR much. Tommy has great physical talent, being 6'5" and running a 4.4, but is raw. Projected Winners: Deonte Thompson and Tandon Doss, and Jacoby will focus on returning.

C: Number of slots available-1. Candidates- A.Q. Shipley and Gino Gradkowski. Situation: We traded for Shipley to compete with Gino for the starting job. Shipley has started a couple games for Indi. Gino has been with us for a year, knows our system, and has been mentored by Matt Birk. Projected Winner: Gino Gradkowski

DL: Number of slots available-1. Candidates- Brandon Williams, Terrence Cody (probably not), Arthur Jones, and Marcus Spears. Situation: A particular position is not up for grabs. Williams or Cody could win and start at NT and move Ngata to DT. Jones or Spears could start and keep Ngata at NT and move Canty to DT. Cody is most likely out after disappointing results in past seasons. Brandon Williams seems very good, but might not be ready (he could, I'm not sure) Jones is coming off a good year and has experience in our system. Spears is a great run stuffer. Projected Winner: Arthur Jones. I think our starting D-Line will be Art Jones, Ngata, and Canty. He has experience and is very solid.

MLB: Number of slots available-2. Candidates- Daryl Smith, Jameel McClain, and Arthur Brown. Situation: This is a battle where I woudn't get mad no matter who won. I think they are all starting MLB's on most teams. Brown will be a great 3-down linebacker and will most likely be solid now. Jameel has always been solid. Smith was one of the most underrated (and best) OLB's in Jacksonville's 4-3 defense. Projected Winners: Daryl Smith and Arthur Brown. Smith has always been very good and Arthur will probably be great. Jameel is good, but doesn't have the potential to become a top 10 MLB.

CB: Number of slots available-1. Candidates- Corey Graham and Jimmy Smith. Situation: We have Corey Graham who was very good last year and we have Jimmy who had a good superbowl and has great physical attributes. Jimmy has (from what I've heard) done good in the offseason. Projected winner: Jimmy Smith. I think Jimmy finally steps up this year and makes everybody understand why we drafted him in the 1st round a couple of years ago.

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