We’re still days from National Signing Day. No SEC team even has announced its spring practice schedule. The Super Bowl has yet to be played.

Yet here we are, already missing SEC football.

RELATED: Best returning SEC players at every position

It’s the only conference where discussing and debating year-round is perfectly acceptable, even in late January. So that’s what we’re aiming to do: Promote a discussion about the SEC’s best returning players.

To that end, we’ve put together a way-too-early preseason All-SEC team with our opinion of the best returnees in the conference. There’s plenty of room for argument, but it’s a fun exercise that starts to sharpen our knowledge of the 2016 season.


QB: Chad Kelly, Ole Miss
RB: Leonard Fournette, LSU
RB: Nick Chubb, Georgia
WR: Fred Ross, Mississippi State
WR: Calvin Ridley, Alabama
TE: Evan Engram, Ole Miss
OT: Cam Robinson, Alabama
OT: Dan Skipper, Arkansas
C: Brandon Kublanow, Georgia
G: Braden Smith, Auburn
G: Dylan Wiesman, Tennessee
PK: Elliott Fry, South Carolina
All-Purpose: Christian Kirk, Texas A&M


DE: Myles Garrett, Texas A&M
DE: Jonathan Allen, Alabama
DT: Daylon Mack, Texas A&M
DT: Terry Beckner Jr., Missouri
LB: Zach Cunningham, Vanderbilt
LB: Skai Moore, South Carolina
LB: Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Tennessee
CB: Cam Sutton, Tennessee
CB: Jalen Tabor, Florida
S: Jamal Adams, LSU
S: Eddie Jackson, Alabama
P: JK Scott, Alabama


Kentucky is the only SEC program without a single representative on our way-too-early preseason All-SEC team.

To no one’s surprise, Alabama leads the way with five representatives, including two defensive players who decided against entering the NFL draft after the 2015 national championship.

Preseason SEC East favorite Tennessee and Texas A&M, with a fierce defensive line, are tied for second with three representatives each.

Alabama: 5
Tennessee: 3
Texas A&M: 3
Georgia: 2
LSU: 2
Ole Miss: 2
South Carolina: 2
Arkansas: 1
Auburn: 1
Florida: 1
Mississippi State: 1
Missouri: 1
Vanderbilt: 1


Take away Alabama and the divisions actually are represented equally. The defense also is split with six members in each division. The SEC West holds a big advantage on offense, though, with nine members of the team compared to four for the East.

SEC East: 10
SEC West: 15