Only one player has started every game of the Jay Norvell era, but that streak will come to an end in Nevada's next game.
Wolf Pack left tackle Jake Nelson, who has started 30 straight games, broke his arm in Nevada's 54-3 loss to Hawaii on Saturday and will miss the remainder of the season. So, too, will backup defensive back Daylon Johnson, who got his first start in the Hawaii loss. Johnson also broke his arm against the Rainbow Warriors.
"It's really unusual to lose two players to that type of injury in the same game, but we did on Saturday," Norvell said.
Nelson, a senior, was one of the players the Wolf Pack could least afford to lose. Nevada's offensive line has been inconsistent, struggling to open holes in the run game while allowing 13 sacks in the first five games after giving up just 16 last season. Norvell said Miles Beach and Aaron Frost, the Wolf Pack's two starting guards, are the top candidates to replace Henry protecting the quarterback's blindside.
"It's a big loss," Norvell said of losing Henry. "It really is. Jake was our most experienced lineman. He's our left tackle. He plays probably the most critical position in the front. That's a big loss for us, him being a senior. We have some different options there. We're going to look at Miles Beach at left tackle, which will give some guys inside the opportunity to play more at guard. Frosty has been a tackle. We'll look at that. We have plenty of capable linemen to play and give us good play in the Union."
Norvell has highlighted Nevada's play at center as an area that must improve. With either Beach or Frost expected to move to tackle, the Wolf Pack also will break in a new starter at one of the guard spots. Jermaine Ledbetter and Gray Davis, who have both played in a reserve role this season, are the top candidates to start at guard.
"One of the things we have to do a better job of is protecting the quarterback and getting the ball out on time," Norvell said. "That's a combination of the quarterback making the proper reads and getting the ball out, receivers getting open and the offensive line protecting. That's been an issue for us. we have to be better there. We have to get the right combination."