TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Running back depth was a question for Florida State entering the spring, but the Seminoles won't be able to ascertain much until August following the latest string of injuries at the position.
Seminoles coach Jimbo Fisher announced Monday sophomore running back Ryan Green will miss the remainder of the spring with a shoulder injury. Green, seen with his right arm in a sling at Monday's scrimmage, had surgery the shoulder within the last week. Fisher did not disclose what specifically Green injured, electing to just call it a shoulder injury.
As a true freshman in 2013, Green played sparingly, rushing for 163 yards on 33 carries. This spring, he was competing for the backup running back spot behind starter Karlos Williams, and Fisher spent the first two weeks praising the 5-foot-10, 195-pound sophomore.
"Ryan Green has tremendous upside and has really developed. He may be the fastest, quickest guy on our football team. I mean he was off the charts," Fisher said recently.
Running backs coach Jay Graham has little to work with at the position for the final seven practices of the spring. Redshirt sophomore running back Mario Pender, the favorite along with Green to back up Williams, might have pulled a hamstring Monday, Fisher said.
Williams is practicing, but on a non-contact basis as he deals with an unspecified injury. Green and Pender's injuries could keep Williams in a green non-contact jersey the rest of the spring.
Dalvin Cook, the Seminoles' top 2014 recruit, tore the labrum in his shoulder the first week of March and will be sidelined another two months.
Williams, a senior, was the unquestioned No. 1 heading into spring after a junior season in which he rushed for more than 700 yards and 11 touchdowns. Williams became the primary back when Devonta Freeman and James Wilder Jr. both declared for the NFL draft following their junior seasons. Their departures jumbled the depth chart at running back, where the Seminoles are short on experience but not on talent -- Cook, Green, Pender and Williams were all among the top 72 players in the ESPN 150 in their respective classes.
"We'll probably only have Karlos and we'll have to adjust form there," Fisher said. "... Karlos is playing very solid but we didn't get him tackled [Monday]. We can't afford to get him tackled."
Monday was the Seminoles' first spring scrimmage, and Fisher was not especially complimentary of the reigning national champions. Injuries were not the root of the fifth-year coach's displeasure.
"It was a very average scrimmage both ways," he said.