Auburn’s Todd eager to join QB race after surgery

Published 5:25 pm Thursday, March 26, 2009

AUBURN — Chris Todd is mostly a spectator in Auburn’s three-man quarterback battle, at least during the early stages of spring practice.

The one-time starter is still recovering from offseason surgery on a shoulder that hampered him last season while incumbent Kodi Burns tries to hold off Neil Caudle and Barrett Trotter. With all the contenders having to learn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn’s system and prove themselves to a new coaching staff, Todd knows he’s missing valuable time.

“As soon as I get back, there’s going to be a small window,” he said.

Dr. James Andrews operated on Todd’s right, throwing shoulder on Dec. 23.

“What they did is basically go in and shave off the end of the clavicle that had become damaged or arthritic,” Todd said. “They cleaned all that up. They drilled a hole in the AC joint and tied it back together and yanked it back down, so it’s in place now.

“Dr. Andrews is the best there is,” he added. “He said he went in there and cleaned it up good, so I’m hoping it’s right back to where it was.”

Todd, who started his career with Texas Tech before going to a junior college, never appeared to have full velocity on his throws last season while alternating with Burns.

He played in seven games and although his passing numbers were slightly better, he lacked Burns’ mobility.

“I knew something was wrong all the time,” Todd said. “There were throws that I could make my sophomore year of high school that I couldn’t necessarily make all the time last year. But we tried to play with it. Sometimes it was getting better and sometimes it would fall off. It got to the point where I had to fix it.”

Offensive coordinator Tony Franklin, who had recruited Todd for Troy, was fired in midseason and shortly after that the offense’s reins were handed over to Burns fulltime.

Now, Todd is being forced to watch from the sidelines again, falling behind the competition.

“It’s real hard,” he said. “You want to be in the heat of the competition. It’s frustrating, but I’ve just got to keep doing rehab and get back as soon as I can.”