Taylor Chappell (6'5, 305, Sr.)
2014: 10 starts (RT)
The Beef: Color me surprised that Chappell hasn’t had more starts in his career. But I suppose that 2013 offensive line was pretty locked in, even if he did see action in four games that year.
This year, he will move from outside right to inside left, again putting Pinkel’s "The Best Five Will Play" style on full display. I do find it a tad interesting he is slotted as the current starter at LG over the next person on the list.
AlaTiger: I’m not a big fan of moving folks all over the place on the line, but it seems to work for the most part. It’s interesting to see two guys with this many starts between them fighting for this slot. He needs to get used to playing inside and stop stepping on Boehm’s feet.
Fullback U: Taylor Chappell struggled playing right tackle last year, and he was moved to left guard between strongman Connor McGovern and Evan Boehm. He's vocal during practice and has kept his first team position through one scrimmage, but I still believe coach AJ Ricker feels this is the weakest point on the offensive line.
Bill C.: We heard a lot of good things about Chappell through the years. He experienced a setback with an early-career knee injury and finally cracked the starting lineup when Anthony Gatti's injury caused some shuffling after the Indiana game. There were some penalty issues here and there, but he was part of an awfully strong line over the second half of the season. Of course, so was Brad McNulty. This is a battle that might not end when the season starts.
Brad McNulty (6'4, 305, Sr.)
2014: 10 starts (LG)
2012: 5 starts (C)
Bill C.: Brad McNulty has been an injury fill-in twice in his career, first as a relatively overwhelmed redshirt freshman in 2012, then as Anthony Gatti's replacement in 2014. When Gatti got hurt, Mizzou moved Connor McGovern from right tackle to right guard (ahead of Mitch Hall), promoted Chappell to starting right tackle, and moved McNulty's spot. It took a few games, but the line unquestionably gelled. Now, barring injury, either Chappell or McNulty will start on the bench.
The Beef: McNulty had most of the starts at LG last season, but now finds himself behind Chappell, though still at the same spot. I suppose I would not be terribly surprised to see him (or Chappell, I guess) moved around depending on need this fall, but that would have to come pretty early. I certainly expect him to see a decent amount of time on the field, either spelling people or moving into a starter role when a reason materializes.
AlaTiger: I think that this LG battle says some positive things about the two guys fighting for the RT spot. This may end up being more of a split-time situation than we are used to seeing on the line.
Fullback U: Agree with AlaTiger, I think regardless who starts, Brad McNulty and Taylor Chappell will rotate a lot at left guard to keep them both fresh and accentuate their strengths. I think McNulty might be the better athlete but he's also the best swing lineman on the roster currently and so coaches want to keep him available. I was impressed with McNulty's ability on pull blocks last year.