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The USA Depth Chart Now

The USA Depth Chart Now

Out of the ashes of The Trade the USA Men’s 15s team pulled … well maybe not a phoenix but perhaps a bird or two of another feather.
 
With USA Rugby essentially forced into sending their top overseas pros back to the UK for most of November in return for them pitching-up against New Zealand, Head Coach Mike Tolkin had to get creative. This was even more true when Brett Thompson and Danny Barrett went down with injuries and Troy Hall had to pull out due to the timing of his un-retirement (he needed a six-month stand-down period before the anti-doping agency would allow him to resume play).
 
Because of the Troy Hall issue, Tolkin had to make a late change to the first team he named. After that he made eight, five, and three changes to his starting lineup. All in all he put 37 players on the lineup sheet. Some didn’t see any playing time, but 33 did. That’s not a recipe for a settled team.
 
And yet some good things came out of it. The USA players who could play showed they were within a whisker of beating Fiji. They had a horrible seven minutes against Tonga, but outside of that period were equal with the Sea Eagles. And they beat Romania in Romania. 
 
Along the way, some players made a few moves. Eric Fry was much improved and cemented his spot among the props. John Quill and Taku Ngwenya were two players who would have seen much less playing time had everyone been available, and were fortunate because they played very well with the opportunities they got. Thretton Palamo also played extremely well in the one starting chance he received.
 
No one would have through that Mate Moeakiola was still able to play 80 minutes of international rugby, but he did, and rescued the team as a result. John Cullen and Greg Peterson had moments, and struggled at times, but they got a taste of true international rugby and will be the better for it. Tim Stanfill might well have seen no minutes had Blaine Scully been with the USA and Brett Thompson not hurt. Now he’s a legitimate Eagle contender.
 
In addition, Head Coach Mike Tolkin said he came out of the tour feeling positive. Despite being without 11 key players at various moments, the group he had played fairly well and competed at the international level. 
 
So, what the trade worth it? You could say that the players made it worth it. Tolkin made it worth it.
 
Now, going into 2015, the coach has a legitimate depth chart. This isn’t the official one, of course, but it’s a list of players who could conceivably be considered for the World Cup squad. There will undubtedly be more players who poke their heads up over the paprapet. Each position has its players listed in order (based on Goff's opinion) of where they stand in the current pecking order. 
 
 
Unofficial USA MNT Depth Chart, December 2014
PropsCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Eric Fry27Healthy, playing wellPro - Newcastle Falcons 
Olive Kilifi10Injury (?), playing wellUS Club - Seattle 
Mate Moeakiola29Healthy, playing wellPro - Castenet, France 
Titi Lamositele8Returning from injuryPro - Saracens 
Nick Wallace14Healthy, needs to improveUS Club - Glendale 
Ben Tarr2DevelopingPro - Souths Australia 
Angus MacLellan0DevelopingCollege - Davenport 
Val Lee-Lo0DevelopingUS Club - Seattle 
     
HookersCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Phil Thiel26Healthy, playing wellUS Cub - Life 
Tom Coolican8Healthy, playing wellPro - Sydney Stars 
Zach Fenoglio7Knocking on doorUS Club - Glendale 
MIke Shepherd0DevelopingUS Club - Seattle 
Charlie Baleirara0On the outside?US Club - Metropolis 
     
LocksCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Samu Manoa10Automatic starterPro - Northampton 
Hayden Smith22Healthy, playing wellPro - SaracensCan also play loose fwd
Lou Stanfill50Losing playing time?US Club - SeattleCan also play loose fwd
Tai Tuisamoa6Healthy, playing wellPro - London ScottishCan also play loose fwd
John Cullen3DevelopingUS Club - SeattleCan also play loose fwd
Greg Peterson3Has potentialPro - North Harbour Rays 
Brodie Orth0DevelopingUS Club - KC Blues 
Brian Doyle15Not picked last tourUS Club - NYAC 
Mike Lawrenson0DevelopingSoon-to-be-pro 
Graham Harriman4Not picked last tourUS Club - Metropolis 
Brendan Daly0DevelopingUS Club - SFGGCan also play loose fwd
Nick Civetta0Probably on the outsidePro - Viadana 
Nate Brakeley0Probably on the outsideUS Club - NYAC 
     
LooseCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Todd Clever63Automatic starterPro - NTT 
Scott LaValla29Automatic starterPro - Stade FrancaisCan also play lock
John Quill10Excellent NovemberPro - Dolphin (Ire) 
Cam Dolan10Returning from injuryPro - NorthamptonCan also play lock
Danny Barrett4Looking good in 7sPro - USA 7s Team 
Kyle Sumsion5Graduating this springCollege - BYU 
Matt Trouville3Tough to break throughUS Club - SeattleCan also play lock
Inaki Basauri15Dark horse selectionPro - TarbesCan also play lock
Al McFarland0Probably on the outsideUS Club - NYAC 
     
ScrumhalfCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Mike Petri48Healthy, playing wellUS Club - NYAC 
Shalom Suniula9Healthy, playing wellUS Club - SeattleCan also play flyhalf
Tom Bliss0DevelopingPro - Wasps 
Jope Motokana0Interesting prospectUS Club - Seattle 
Shaun Davies1Probably on the outsideUS Club - Life 
     
FlyhalfCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Adam Siddall8Returning from injuryUS Club - Old BlueCan also play center/fb
Toby L'Estrange12Returning from injuryUS Club - NYACCan also play center
AJ MacGinty0US Eligible FebruaryUS Club - LifeCan also plat scrumhalf
     
CenterCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Seamus Kelly15Developed through fallUS Club - Olympic Club 
Thretton Palamo5Healthy, playing wellPro - Saracens 
Andrew Suniula33Age v Experience?US Club - Old Blue 
Ron McLean1Showed he can playPro - EalingCan also play fullback
     
WingCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Blaine Scully21Automatic starterPro - LeicesterCan also play center/fb
Brett Thompson2Returning from injuryPro - GlasgowCan also play center
Tim Stanfill4Healthy, playing wellUS Club - Seattle 
Taku Ngwenya29Healthy, playing wellPro - Biarritz 
Tim Maupin7Healthy, playing wellTrinity, Ireland 
Luke Hume17Returning from injuryUS Club - Old Blue 
     
FullbackCapsStatusPlaying Env.Notes
Chris Wyles45Automatic starterPro - SaracensCan also play center/fh?