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“The offensive line will be fine,” Brown said. “It’s great to be around the guys, and I have all the trust in the world in them.”

Ross, who will start at tailback on Saturday, said the group was a work in progress.

“I see a lot of guys in and out, but I see a lot of guys working hard,” Ross said. “You know, the growth of the O-line is an everyday process. They’re getting better each day, every practice, so I think they’re coming along, personally.”

Even if the offensive line and the defense’s front seven come together and the Terrapins get production from their running backs, the season will hinge on what Brown and Diggs bring to the table as the team’s top two playmakers.

Diggs’ prowess comes from sheer athleticism as a receiver, punt returner and kick returner.

“I think the biggest thing with Stefon is he wants to be the best in whatever he does and he works at it,” Edsall said. “He’s gotten bigger and stronger. He’s put on 10 pounds. … You talk about a guy who’s got a chance to be unbelievable in whatever he does.”

In Brown, the Terrapins have a leader it was lacking a year ago.

“You see how the guys rally around him and listen to him,” Edsall said. “It’s good to have the veteran presence.”

Maryland opens its final ACC season with home dates against Florida International and Old Dominion before traveling to face Edsall’s former team, Connecticut. That sets the stage for a game against West Virginia at the Baltimore Ravens’ M&T Bank Stadium and the conference opener at Florida State.

“The guys are tired of hitting one another and I’m anxious,” Edsall said. “As a coaching staff, we’re anxious to see them play because they put in a whole lot of hard work since last year.”

And who knows, Petty might get to play linebacker after all.