Top 10 returning players at Air Force in 2022 include Brad Roberts and Haaziq Daniels

The top 10 returning players at Air Force are headlined by FB Brad Roberts as the Falcons look to build on a 10-3 season a year ago.

After quietly finishing 2021 with a 10-3 record, the Air Force Falcons are loaded for a run at the Mountain West in 2022. With a heavy dose of running back Brad Roberts expected, we count down our top 10 returning players at Air Force for the 2022 college football season.

For each Mountain West team’s top returning players: Air Force | Boise State | Colorado State | Fresno State | Hawaii | Nevada | New Mexico | San Diego State | San Jose State | UNLV | Utah State | Wyoming

Top 10 Air Force returning players in 2022

As the countdown to the regular season continues, as does our top 10 returning players series. We’re counting down all the top 10 players returning to action on every team — we’ll deal with transfers later — from Air Force to Wyoming, from Miami to Hawaii, and all in between. Here are the top returning players to Air Force in 2022.

10) DeAndre Hughes, RB/WR

The Air Force rushing attack runs through Brad Roberts but don’t count out DeAndre Hughes. The speedy wide receiver — if we can even call him that — toted the rock 61 times a season ago for 497 yards and three touchdowns. Hughes predominantly lines up at wingback as the third option by design but not in nature of talent. His 8.15 yards-per-carry average is indicative of his speed and elusiveness, as he was a former letterer in track during his high school days.

9) Kaleb Holcomb, OT

The Air Force offensive line must deal with turnover from a season ago, but one returning rising star is junior Kaleb Holcomb. A former high school standout at Dublin Coffman High School in Ohio, Holcomb shared snaps a season ago along the right side of the offensive line. When he was in, however, this offense looked more dynamic. With a quick first step, the former tight end is nearly perfect for running the right tackle role in the Air Force offense. He gets in front of run plays brilliantly while presenting no lapse in pass protection.

8) Alec Mock, LB

A tackling machine, Alec Mock will look to have an even bigger impact on the Air Force defense this fall. Mock has great size for the middle at 6’3″, 230 pounds, but also possesses terrific speed for a man his size. His instincts are great as well as his ability to run the alley in run pursuit. Mock can blitz well, and if he improves his coverage in the short area of the field, he could blossom into one of the Mountain West’s top linebackers.

7) Camby Goff, S

Standing out from his strong safety spot, Camby Goff had a breakout season in 2021. Starting eight of the team’s final nine games, Goff came on strong as the year progressed. He has excellent coverage ability on all types of receivers in his jurisdiction, as well as a keen ability to pursue run plays from the front or backside of pursuit. Goff also presents a challenge with his speed when he blitzes off the edge.

6) Trey Taylor, S

Roaming the field, Trey Taylor excelled at free safety in 2021. Taylor is one of the more heady players in the game whenever he takes the field, as his smarts and instincts are apparent from the first snap. He also has even better athleticism to go along with his smarts. Taylor, a cousin of NFL Hall of Famer Ed Reed, flies to the football in both coverage and against the run.

5) Christopher Herrera, DL

Second on the team with eight quarterback hurries last year, Christopher Herrera gets after it in the pass-rushing game. Herrera also knows how to finish as he recorded 3.5 sacks and a bevy of QB hits in the process. He also uses his basketball background to get his hands in passing lanes if he cannot reach the quarterback while clogging rushing lanes like he’s set to take a charge in the key. Herrera is a dominant specimen in the middle for Air Force.

4) TD Blackmon, LB

Despite playing in just nine games and only four with full-time snaps, TD Blackmon was still able to showcase what made him Mr. Football in the state of Tennessee during his high school days. He’s an elite-level athlete with great size and speed. Blackmon flies to the ball in the run game and can cover a variety of pass catchers all the same. With a clean bill of health expected for 2022, the sky is the limit for the rising senior.

3) Vince Sanford, EDGE

A season after recording a team-high 9.5 sacks, Vince Sanford is back to cause havoc on opposing quarterbacks. Not only was Sanford a menace with his pass-rushing skills, his ability to break contain and beat the offensive lineman in front of him was on display in the run game. Sanford led the team with 17 tackles for loss and chipped in with another three pass breakups.

2) Haaziq Daniels, QB

After battling to take the reigns a season ago, the offense runs through Haaziq Daniels without question in 2022. One of the more dynamic players in college football, Daniels ripped off 18 carries of at least 10 yards while showcasing an ability in the open field like no recent Air Force QB has. When he does take to the air, Daniels proved to be accurate with the football, especially over the middle of the field. His bread and butter certainly is his rushing ability, but he is by no stretch just a one-dimensional quarterback.

1) Brad Roberts, FB/RB

There aren’t many more integral pieces to an FBS offense than Brad Roberts in 2022. The Falcons’ leading man in the backfield returns for one final season after reaching 1,357 yards and 13 touchdowns a year ago. As dependable as any running back in the country, Roberts has not fumbled in his career and dominates the point of attack. Roberts isn’t the flashiest, but his career average of 5.0 yards per carry is more than enough to get the job done when he’s given the ball. By no means, however, is he not able to create on his own.

Honorable mention players returning to Air Force in 2022

  • Everett Smalley, OT
  • Ayden McCollough, G
  • Michael Mack II, CB
  • Jonathan Youngblood, LB
  • Bo Richter, LB
  • Isaac Cochran, G

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