Looking back through the journal and visualizing the campsites that I stayed at, I'd say I'd only have to hit the ground between 4 and 8 times....and that is staying with my friends based on where we collectively wanted to stop. That number would come down if I wasn't concerned with camping with buddies.
The way that I'd probably roll when I do the trail again would be to take a z rest, just 7 sections, for times when it is necessary to go to ground at the beginning. In the first 700 miles, there are a lot of days when it is nice to just chill out under the trees letting the heat calm down..for those situations, the z rest is optimal, you don't have to blow it up, it can be tossed down wherever, and it is quick...that is an add-on of 7oz, which even though is significant, would be worth it for me ( I also use it as a backpack in my frameless pack). I picked one up mid trail, and wished I had picked it up earlier. I used it as my leg insulation in my hammock as well.
Hope that helps, feel free to PM me as well if you have other questions.