Atlantic City starts anew this season.
The Vikings graduated 19 seniors from last season's 5-5 team. Inexperienced players are everywhere.
But it's not like the Vikings will be overwhelmed. Many of the inexperienced players are seniors, who sat behind more talented players the past few years.
"We're trying to get the right chemistry," Atlantic City coach Bobby Weiss said. "It's one step at a time. The attitude seems good. The kids are giving it everything they've got."
The Vikings were highly touted in the preseason last year but struggled once the season started.
"No one has a position (guaranteed) this year," Weiss said. "Too many guys thought they had positions locked up last year. Maybe that was one of the problems."
Atlantic City will rely on its defense - at least at the start - to be competitive.
"Atlantic City kids like to play defense," Weiss said. "They're tough. They like that label. We have good team speed defensively. For some reason we have that on defense but not offense."
Senior linebacker Yasir Williams is one of the few veterans back. Linebackers Mykel Pollock and Sam Martelli are aggressive new players.
On offense, the Vikings are inexperienced upfront but return some experience at the skill positions.
Quarterback Jamal Anderson played the end of last season. He and senior Matt Ireland are battling for that position. Running back Jon Robinson gained nearly 500 yards last season. Sophomore running back Keith Gray also has shown talent.
Atlantic City faces a tough early-season schedule for an inexperienced team. The Vikings open Friday against Egg Harbor Township, the favorite to win the Cape-Atlantic League American Conference. Atlantic City then plays defending South Jersey Group IV champion Mainland Regional and then perennial power Hammonton.
The Vikings say they shouldn't be overlooked.
"Don't fall asleep on us," Robinson said. "Don't doubt us."
PLAYOFF APPEARANCES: 5
LAST APPEARANCE: 2007
PLAYOFF RECORD: 3-4
LEAGUE/GROUP: Cape-Atlantic League American Conference/South Jersey Group IV
COACH: Bobby Weiss
(149-108-1, 27 seasons)
2008 RECORD: 5-5
2009 PREDICTION: Rebuilding.
The Vikings are inexpereinced but could surprise if they survive a tough early-season schedule.
THE GROUND GAME:
Jon Robinson averaged 7.7 yards per carry last season.
Tony Ayala, Sr., LB, 5-10, 180;
Yasir Williams, Sr., OLB, 5-11, 180;
Dan Vasquez, Sr., OL/DL, 5-10, 220;
Carlos Robles, Sr., LB, 5-10 180;
C.J. Hackney, Sr., OL, 6-1, 250;
Marcus Evans, Sr., OL/DL, 6-2, 300;
Jamal Anderson, Jr., QB, 6-0, 180.;
Jon Robinson, Sr., RB, 5-8, 160.
Deshawn Daniels, Sr., OL, 5-10, 270;
Matt Ireland, Sr., QB, 5-10, 175;
Zaiire Prevard, Sr., DB/WR, 5-10, 175;
Jermaine Royal, Sr., DL, 6-1, 250;
Malik Wellmen, Sr., DB/SE, 5-11, 175;
Mykel Pollock, Sr., LB/RB, 5-11, 215;
Quaijuan Thomas, Sr., SE, 6-2, 200;
Chris Thomas, Jr., OL/DL, 6-1, 215;
Dajuan Daniels, Jr., OL/DL, 6-3, 225;
Joe Seagraves, Jr., QB/WR, 6-0, 175;
Keith Gray, So., RB/LB, 5-11, 175;
Ismail Naji, So., DE/SE, 6-2, 185.
Atlantic City's Schedule
Sept. 11: Egg Harbor Township 7 p.m.
Sept. 18: at Mainland Regional 4 p.m.
Sept. 25: at Hammonton 7 p.m.
Oct. 2: Millville 7 p.m.
Oct. 16: Oakcrest 7 p.m.
Oct. 23: at Absegami 7 p.m.
Oct. 30: at Vineland 7 p.m.
Nov. 6: Ocean City 7 p.m.
Nov. 26: Holy Spirit 10 a.m.