Maryland senior right guard Terrance Davis, who when healthy has been a steady presence on the offensive line, will likely miss the next “four to six weeks” after suffering a sprained MCL in Saturday’s 20-17 defeat at Temple, first-year coach Mike Locksley announced Tuesday.
The injury to Davis, which occurred late in the first half at Lincoln Financial Field, has forced Lockley and offensive line coach John Reagan to reshuffle what is already a thin and relatively inexperienced group as Maryland (2-1) heads into a bye week before playing No. 13 Penn State at home Sept. 27.
Redshirt senior Ellis McKennie (McDonogh), who started the season opener at left tackle and can play multiple positions on the line, will likely replace Davis at right guard. Redshirt freshman Austin Fontaine, who was moved from the defensive line in the spring, will also play significant snaps.
“We already were thin there, but when you lose a player of Terrance’s caliber, he’s a three-year starter for the most part and was playing at a high level for us, it’s still the next-man-up mentality,” Locksley said. “It pushes Austin Fontaine up to the two-deep. He played quite a bit of the second half of the Temple game.”
Davis made nine consecutive starts at right guard to end his freshman year in 2016, then started every game as a sophomore. After missing the first four games last season with an injury, Davis started six of the remaining eight games. The 6-3, 317-pound Davis is considered Maryland’s best run blocker.
The Terps certainly appeared to miss Davis late in the game. After DJ Turner returned a punt 55 yards to the Temple 4 with Maryland trailing 20-15 and 4:53 to play, running back Anthony McFarland Jr. carried the ball four straight times. After being tackled for a 1-yard loss, McFarland got back to the 1, but was then stuffed twice, the second time for a 3-yard loss.
Of Maryland’s 10 offensive linemen listed on last week’s depth chart, half of are either redshirt freshmen or redshirt sophomores with very little experience, including Fontaine, starting left tackle Jaelyn Duncan and backup right tackle Spencer Anderson. Like Fontaine, sophomore Breyon Gaddy was moved from defensive line.
“The depth is not necessarily where we want it to be, but we still have enough able bodies and we’ve got to get these guys playing fundamentally a little cleaner than what we played on Saturday,” Locksley said Tuesday.
The offensive line isn’t the only concern. Sophomore kicker Joseph Petrino, who made his first 11 field-goal attempts of his career last season and 12 of 14 overall, has an injured groin. Petrino did not return Saturday after missing his first attempt of the season, a 40-yarder in the first quarter.
Along with possibility contributing to Petrino’s miss, the injury forced the Terps to try a fake field-goal attempt in the second quarter on fourth-and-3 from the Temple 16. Holder Mike Shinsky, who took over those duties when reserve quarterback Max Bortenschlager was hurt late in preseason camp, was swarmed for a 10-yard loss.
Junior kicker Paul Inzerillo was successful on his first PAT, but his second try was blocked.
“As of now, he won’t kick the next couple of days. We’re trying to let it calm down,” Locksley said of Petrino. “We won’t know until we start preparation for Penn State on Sunday how he feels. He didn’t tear it, so that’s a good thing. He has significant pain in that area.”