2022 Auburn Tigers Offensive Playmakers

The Auburn Tigers are in the midst of week two of Spring practice, and it is a great opportunity for playmakers to emerge. There is one section of the skill position players that is an obvious strength, and another that has major questions. While most will be paying close attention to the quarterback battle, these spots on the offense are well worth looking at. Who are the 2022 Auburn Tigers offensive playmakers?

2022 Auburn Tigers Offensive Playmakers

Running Backs

The Auburn offense should end and begin with the run game behind Tank Bigsby. Probably the best recruiting job done by Bryan Harsin was getting his star back. In two seasons on the plains, Bigsby has rushed for 1,933 yards and 15 touchdowns. Those numbers are impressive, but he did seem to disappear at times last season. After opening the 2021 season with three consecutive 100-yard games, he only had two in the remaining ten. Auburn needs Bigsby to be the star each week to be successful.

Behind Tank is Jarquez Hunter, who was a pleasant surprise early in the season. He accumulated 593 yards and three touchdowns with 6.7 yards per carry average. As the season went on he became less of a factor in the offense, as the unit as a whole struggled down the stretch. He did not rush for over 20 yards in any of the final five games. It will be important for Auburn to find the third back during the Spring. A potential candidate for the role is Sean Jackson. During his freshman season, he rushed for 60 yards on 12 carries.

Wide Receivers

The weakness of the 2021 Auburn offense was the receiving group. Last season’s unit had the difficult task of replacing Seth Williams, Anthony Schwartz, and Eli Stove. No one really stepped up and became that go-to receiver for quarterbacks Bo Nix and T.J. Finley. Of the Tiger’s top four receivers from 2021, only one returns for the 2022 season. Kobe Hudson and Ja’Varrius Johnson both left the program, and Demetrius Robertson ran out of eligibility.

The one that remains is Shedrick Jackson who was second on the team in yards with 527 yards behind the 580 for Hudson. After Jackson, it is Malcolm Johnson and Ze’Vian Capers with six catches apiece. Incoming freshman Jay Fair could play a huge role in the offense. The three-star out of Rockwall, Texas caught 26 touchdown passes in his final two seasons in high school with 2,204 yards. New receivers coach Ike Hilliard was brought in to develop these players so Auburn can make a big leap. Hilliard was part of the 1996 national championship team at Florida. He also spent 12 years in the NFL as a player and 11 as an assistant coach.

Tight Ends

The tight end position might be one of the underrated position groups for Auburn. That is probably since the position was neglected for so long under the previous coaching staff. Returning is John Samuel Shenker, Tyler Fromm, and Luke Deal. All three can be reliable for whoever the quarterback is while the receivers find their footing. That is especially the case with Shenker. Not only is he reliable in the passing game but an obvious leader on the team as well. In 2021, he caught 33 passes for 413 yards. He already is one of the Auburn Tigers playmakers at the skill positions in 2022.