FSU football coaches spent a lot of time and effort building depth on the offensive line for the upcoming 2022 season.
They took four offensive linemen from the transfer portal in the 2022 recruiting class. One of the earliest additions was Wisconsin transfer Kayden Lyles.
Lyles was brought in to compete on the interior offensive line, in particular, the center position. He had a history of injuries but the staff felt he could help the team in a position of need. Lyles enrolled at FSU in the spring and didn’t wow anyone as he became acclimated to a new offense.
At the very least, he would have been great depth at the center position as he battled incumbent Maurice Smith for the position. Smith struggled with injuries in 2021 himself and needed to put on weight to help him anchor and avoid getting pushed into the backfield.
Smith added the weight and wasn’t willing to give his job away. That competition proved to be a good thing as Kayden Lyles announced via Twitter he would miss the 2022 season due to an injury:
How Does The Injury Impact The Offensive Line?
The good thing is Maurice Smith has become less of a liability, but it does hurt the depth as Lyles would have played snaps this season.
He could have been depth at the guard positions as well. This could mean other players will have to shuffle and take snaps at center, to provide depth behind Maurice Smith.
Some players like Darius Washington(who’s coming off an injury/rehab, and Bryson Estes will have to step up in Lyles’ absence.
The good news is Estes has shown some flashes this fall and is physically one of the strongest guys on the team. It’s not clear if Lyles will return to FSU in 2023, but our thoughts and prayers go out to him for a speedy recovery.