We have depth and experience everywhere on this defense (for a change), and no glaring weaknesses. We shouldn't be any worse than good on defense, but the question will be, how many really high-impact players will emerge this year, especially on the D-line? To be great, to be the kind of defense that wins games by throttling opposing offenses (as opposed to just not giving up big plays and hoping for breaks), we need to have a stronger pass rush than we've had in a while.
Coach Mattison has said that it all starts on the interior line ... if that gets push then the ends and backers have more opportunities to disrupt. If that's true (and I have to believe it is), then the focus is on the DTs. Who from that group seems best to be that guy?
Well, no one looks sure-fire right now. Henry and Wormley have potential, but it remains to be seen if they've topped out yet, or have more improvement to come. Hurst and Poggi also have promise, but no game experience. Pipkins I'm not too optimistic about. He showed nothing in a season and a half before he got hurt. Even if he's back healthy, I don't think he'll ever be the kind of high-impact, high motor kind of disruptor that we need.
Pipkins first year on the interior line didn't impress you? As a freshman?