Last season Niumatolo experimented with than freshman quarterback Keenan Reynolds after the Midshipmen lost three of their first four games. Reynolds went on to lead Navy to six wins in eight games and a bid to the Kraft Hunger Bowl against Arizona State. During that stretch Reynolds displayed great explosiveness and a mastery of Niumatolo’s offense. Reynolds rushed for over 100 yards twice and scored an impressive 19 total touchdowns. By season’s end, Reynolds accumulated 898 passing yards and 649 rushing yards, not bad statistics for a true freshman in a complicated offense.
On the offensive line, Navy faces the same challenges as the other service academies: size. The line averages 6’2” 278lbs which them in the bottom third of Division I teams. But what Navy lacks in size they more than compensate for with conditioning, agility and technique. The line returns three starters in LT Graham Vickers, C Tanner Fleming and RG Jake Zuzek with Bradyn Heap and E.K. Binns reported as protential new starters. This group can move well and fits perfectly with Niumatolo’s system.
The running back and wide receiver/HB position lose four year starter Gee Gee Greene, the team’s leading rusher and second leading pass receiver last season. Navy returns FB Noah Copeland who rushed for 738 yards and senior RB Darius Staten who averaged 8.89 yards per carry last season. Along with the loss of Gee Gee Greene, the Midshipmen graduate Brandon Turner, the team’s leading receiver last season. WR Shawn Lynch and WR Casey Bolena should fill those voids admirably.