Nettleton had an up and down 2015 season. The Raiders finished with a record of 5-5 and just missed out on a playoff appearance a season ago. The 2015 season had its share of bright moments last season with victories over Newport and Greene County Tech highlighting the season. Nettleton will be a youthful team; however they do have reasons for optimism with seven starters returning for the 2016 season.
Nettleton’s offense will be going through a bit of a transition with all five offensive linemen being new. The good news for the Raiders’ offense is that Deondre Henry is back to lead the offense from the quarterback position. Henry passed for over 700 yards and six touchdowns. Henry is dangerous with his legs and through the air. Henry can be a dangerous playmaker for the opposing defense to contain. The Raiders have a solid wide receiver in the form of Jaron Northern who caught 33 passes last season and racked up over 450 yards receiving. The Nettleton offense might take a little time to gel but it should be a solid offense by the end of the season.
The Nettleton defense was an impressive unit in 2015. The Raiders’ defense allowed only 23 points per game and shut down both Newport and Paragould during the course of the season. The Nettleton defense is led by linebacker Michael Brown. In 2015, Brown had an impressive season, racking up 58 tackles. Brown is an aggressive player that has a nose for the football. The Nettleton defense should be a strength for the Raiders’ team again this season.
Nettleton’s offense might have some struggles early in the season but this should be a dangerous team by the end of the season. The Nettleton defense will be aggressive and should be very tough to move the ball on. I look for Nettleton to challenge for a playoff spot but this could be a team that is only a year away from being dangerous.