Game One - Chattahoochee v. Kell
Preview: Kell's appearance in the Georgia Dome last season ended in a loss to the ultimately undefeated Grayson - not due to a lack of talent. The talent is back this season for Kell. With most of the playmakers on defense, Kell will look for offensive standouts. Watch for Kell's Mauger and Langley to see both sides of the ball. Chattahoochee, on the other hand, has only lost twice in the last two seasons and earned a state championship to boot. Just three starters return on Chattahoochee's defense, with a senior Sykes leading the way. A win for either team could make statewide noise as each are projected to see success in the postseason.
Players to Watch: 2013 QB Travis Marshall, 2014 RB Chase Nelson, 2014 RB Chris Leggett, 2013 OLB Brian Sykes of Chattahoochee and 2013 S Quincy Mauger, 2013 CB Brendan Langley of Kell
Simmons' Major Headline: "Kell has opened up in the Corky Kell Classic with Grayson the last couple of years, so they are seeing someone different this year. Kell is a very good defensive team as is Chattahoochee, so who's offense will make a big play? Four-star cornerback Brendan Langley (South Carolina commitment) made a name for himself a year ago in game one, so will a new prospect emerge out of this game?"
Game Two - McEachern v. Grayson
Preview: Grayson welcomes back almost an entire defense from last year's undefeated squad, including the nation's top football recruit. Similar to last season's opener, Nkemdiche will take the field with a cast on his arm and is expected to dominate on both sides of the ball. He'll be surrounded by highly recruited teammates, including Gallman and Kamara. On the opposing end, McEachern lost some of its high-caliber talent from last season. However, if anyone is to stop Grayson this season, McEachern has promise to do so early. While most of last year's defense has moved on, watch for a star-studded offensive line with Dulaney leading the way.
Players to Watch: 2013 OT Jajuan Dulaney of McEachern and 2013 RB Wayne Gallman, 2013 CB David Kamara, 2013 DE Robert Nkemdiche of Grayson
Simmons' Major Headline: "All that needs to be said here is 'Robert Nkemdiche.' When that name is talked about, people tend to listen a little closer to whoever is talking. Nkemdiche is the top prospect in the country and will be playing defensive line and running back for Grayson on Saturday. He helped Grayson to a 15-0 record in 2011, so will he help them to their 16th consecutive win Saturday? Odds are in their favor."
Game Three - North Gwinnett v. Colquitt County
Preview: Last season, Colquitt County defeated North Gwinnett in the second round of the Class 5-A playoffs. The teams meet again to open the season, with highly esteemed coaches on either side. A key factor in North Gwinnett's offensive line has been sidelined due to a lower back injury, but Seymour could see the field against Colquitt. Watch for Miles to play on both sides of the ball for North Gwinnett - a rare case that handles it with ease. Colquitt plans to turn up the tempo on offense this season, with a talented quarterback in Segraves under center.
Players to Watch: 2013 OT Devondre Seymour, 2013 S Donnie Miles, 2014 WR Nate Brown of North Gwinnett and 2013 OT Octavius Jackson, 2013 CB Bobby Hill, 2013 QB Cole Segraves of Colquitt County
Simmons' Major Headline: "These teams met a year ago in the playoffs and Colquitt County won 17-7, so these two teams have a good idea about one another. Both like to run out of the spread, not like to run a lot of plays, and both have players that can make the big play on offense. North Gwinnett lost four coaches since last year, so will the players be as comfortable as they have been learning under someone new?"
Game Four - Peachtree Ridge v. Camden County
Preview: Just a few weeks ago, Peachtree Ridge worked out in the Georgia Dome in preparation for Camden County. Although Peachtree returns 34 seniors, a win over Camden would be considered an upset. However, Brown's transfer from Maryland could make the difference for Peachtree. Camden boasts a roster of superstars, including a leader in Ramsey at QB whom most analysts expect to see "playing on Sundays." Both teams closed out 2011 with winning seasons and plan to see deep runs into the playoffs.
Players to Watch: 2013 WR Joe Horn Jr., 2014 OL Orlando Brown of Peachtree Ridge and 2013 QB Brice Ramsey, 2013 CB J.J. Green, 2013 OT J.P. Vonashek, 2013 OLB Jarrad Davis of Camden County
Simmons' Major Headline: "On paper, Camden County looks to be the better team, but Peachtree Ridge is physical. They are known to play good defense, but can they slow down Camden County's offense to give themselves a chance in the end? Camden has a lot of weapons to go with size and good special teams."
Game Five - Walton v. Brookwood
Preview: While Georgia boasts the nation's best at running back, Walton's Jones stands out with the most rushing yards in the state last season. Brookwood's McGee has seen time at multiple positions, including linebacker, defensive end, nose guard and fullback last season. Both teams have made state championship appearances in Class 5-A in the last two years, with a Brookwood win over Colquitt in 2010 and a Walton loss to Grayson last fall. The teams did not face each other at all last season.
Players to Watch: 2013 RB Tyren Jones, 2013 QB Parker McLeod, 2013 OG Brandon Kublanow of Walton and 2013 DE Shaun McGee, 2013 WR Kyrin Priester of Brookwood
Simmons' Major Headline: "Walton finished the season at The [Georgia] Dome last year, losing to Grayson in the state championship. They lost some key players on both sides of the ball, especially on the offensive line and in the secondary, so there are some questions on the Walton side. Brookwood likes to play physically and control the ball. We will see if Walton can respond to that Saturday."
Headlines and analysis provided by National Recruiting Analyst Chad Simmons.