It's been rumored that Zach Gilford would only be doing a few episodes of Friday Night Lights next season before going off to college, but I'd hoped that things would change. They didn't, and he, along with Adrienne Palicki and Minka Kelly, will be leaving the show.
A new casting breakdown came out for new series regulars and recurring roles, all kids that go to East Dillon.
Vince: A charming yet dangerous East Dillon junior. He's African-American and, when we first meet him, he's running from the cops. Look for Coach Taylor to put his speed to better use as a member of the Lions. Series regular.
Luke: Vince's classmate and arch nemesis. He's Caucasian, cocky, and charming. Reminds some of a young Paul Newman. Dillon's new geographical breakdown has him playing for the Lions, and he's not happy about it. Series regular.
Jess: The super-energetic daughter of a onetime NFL hopeful, she knows the game inside and out. When she's not busy coaching her younger brothers, this sophomore/junior is getting crushed on by every guy in Dillon, East and West. Series regular.
Becky: A freshman beauty queen whose family is purebred trailer trash. Think Blair Waldorf with lousy genes. She finds Riggins in bed with her mother and reacts by trying to seduce him herself. Recurring.Source
While I will miss Matt Saracen more than I can tell you, I'm excited to see where the show is going to go from here.