With the 2018 season right around the corner, The Chronicle breaks down each of the eight major position groups: quarterbacks, running backs, receivers and tight ends, offensive line, defensive line, defensive backs, linebackers and specialists.
Quarterback Daniel Jones will have no shortage of weapons at his disposal this season. The Blue Devils’ pass catchers are incredibly experienced across the board, and are led by what’s likely the best tight end group in the ACC. Redshirt seniors Daniel Helm and David Koppenhaver each rank in the top five in both career receptions and receiving yards amongst tight ends in the conference. Additionally, sophomore Noah Gray will likely see work at tight end, especially in the red zone.
Key players lost: None
Quite incredibly, Duke returns all but one wide receiver or tight end who caught a pass in 2017 in Quay Chambers, who only had 9 receptions for 87 yards. Duke will return 97 percent of all production from these two positions.
Projected starters: TJ Rahming, Johnathan Lloyd, Chris Taylor and Daniel Helm
In Rahming, Lloyd and Taylor, the Blue Devils have a trio of talented senior wideouts. Rahming is one of the most seasoned pass catchers in all of Division I—his 178 career receptions for 2,108 yards rank second and third nationally. Lloyd, a senior captain, will take care of a lot of the short yardage plays for Duke. Taylor and junior Aaron Young will compete for the third receiver spot.
Dark horse: Jake Bobo
Let me preface that this is a very dark horse. Bobo, a true freshman, is unlikely to see much playing time in 2018. However, he is an intriguing prospect—at 6’4” he is the tallest wideout on Duke’s roster. Bobo also turned heads during the team’s offseason scrimmages, where his 6 receptions for 93 yards led the team in their first contest.
Get Overtime, all Duke athletics
Signup for our editorially curated, weekly newsletter. Cancel at any time.