7 Outside Linebacker
The Huskies will be without either Joe Mathis or Psalm Wooching. The Huskies did without the play of Mathis in 2016, as he was out due to injury. To fill the void of starter Wooching, the team is bringing in Ariel Ngata. The team may also be considering promoting Travis Bartlett to starter and sliding in Ngata in a backup role.
6 Defensive Linemen
With 6-foot-1 321 pound defensive tackle Elijah Qualls electing the 2017 NFL Draft, the Huskies need to replace his production. They will be hard pressed to find it instantly, but the team does have 3-star 79 point graded Joe Tryon, a 6-foot-4 235 pound defensive end coming in 2017. Tryon is listed as a defensive end, but he is a pass rushing specialist who may take the three point stance or stand up in more of an outside linebacker role. With the election of defensive end Vita Vea remaining for another season, the defensive line should be strong once more.
Tryon has been reportedly targeted as a linebacker prospect by Lars Hanson of TheDawgReport
The team needed a true defensive lineman, and nailed it when 3-star defensive lineman Ali Gaye committed on January 23, 2017.
When is a tight end not a tight end?
5 Tight End
The Huskies lose starting tight end Darrelle Daniels, but land a trio of new prospects. The team will welcome grey-shirted 3-star tight end Jacob Kizer, 4-star 83 point graded Hunter Bryant, and 3-star 77 point graded Cade Otton. Why So many?
That’s because Otton has been reportedly recruited as an open-ended athlete – giving him the opportunity to compete as a linebacker, tight end, or a “buck-hybrid position“. The buck is that stand up pass rushing specialist. The same is true for for Kizer.
So in the end, the team will likely slot Bryant into the traditional tight end position. Both Kizer and Otton will end up as athletes competing for their roles on the team.