A few notes worth noting before we move into the meat of the week …
Trott: not. I don’t know whether to be grateful it’s not worse or angry it’s anything at all, but …
As for injuries, Chizik was not forthcoming. TE Tommy Trott, who appeared to have a knee injury, is “day to day,” Chizik said. That doesn’t mean much, because Chizik has used the same phrase for a player who has a potentially career-threatening injury (Aairon Savage). AuburnUndercover.com has reported that Trott has an apparent sprained MCL.
A sprained MCL shouldn’t end Trott’s season or anything, but if I remember my sports-related diagnoses correctly, it should equal a few weeks away. Judging from the first couple of weeks, Trott’s absence won’t impact Auburn’s passing game all that much, but as noted in this space before he’s been a quality blocker in the slot and has played a large role in freeing McCalebb and Fannin along the edge. Losing him just as Auburn hits the make-or-break portion of the schedule is a blow.
Kodi Burns: keep that blocking up, plzkthx.
Henderson: done. Per the Chiznick, there is “no chance” that Henderson–the sophomore defensive end who supposedly made big strides in the spring–will play this season. It’s not all that surprising a piece of news; when Rocker specifically called out Henderson as guy who wasn’t ready/wouldn’t play the week before the opener and then went on t hand walk-on Chris Humphries snaps at DE, the handwriting was on the wall.
Still, the assumption at that point was that Henderson was just not developing as a player–Chizik’s made clear now that that’s not the case, and it’s not something brand new, I’m guessing. Remember that Henderson was one of the players named in Phillip Marshall’s infamous summer report; I’d wager now that whatever tiny bit of fire resulted in that erroneous piece of smoke is something that the Chiznick and Rocker still aren’t over.
Frenchy: …. uh, tetchy? (This rhyming thing suddenly got a lot harder.) Still probably the most recognizable name as far as Auburn’s slot jitterbugs go, PPL still has a chance at breaking into the rotation this season, Chizik says. I personally doubt it’s much of a chance, though–if perfectly healthy, not-in-the-doghouse receivers like, say, Emory Blake can’t even get a pass thrown in their direction, Frenchy’s got way too much ground to make up to have an impact in 2009.
Cole: less-than-whole. Backup safety and special teams player Drew Cole got carted off the field Saturday, and Chizik was typically tight-lipped about how severe his injury might be. It’s tempting to point to Cole’s status as the fifth or sixth safety in the pecking order and a generally anonymous special teams player and say “No biggie,” but if you haven’t noticed, Auburn’s special teams kind of blow right now. Taking any experienced, scholarship athlete off of them to be replaced (surely) by a walk-on isn’t a help. This season, every injury is important.