That was UGLY. The defense looked as porous as ever, and coupled with stupid mistakes and a lack of generating turnovers, all the hype is gone. We are all left with the cold reality that the defense just might not be good.
The secondary only gave up 336 yards through the air, but that was because Ole Miss did not have to just air it out. I truly believe if they sat back and threw the ball around the yard, they would have put up 500+ yards.
The secondary could not cover in space, and besides the fumble John Bonney forced, they really did not make a play. Run support was horrible too, we all saw the safeties whiff on tackles as they were gashed for big run after big run.
Yes, starters were missing and yes the first game was bound to not be crisp. However, stupid penalty after stupid penalty was back breaking. And the celebrating every tackle or incomplete like a highlight play was annoying and absurd. Quit dancing and make plays.
Dakota Allen and Jordyn Brooks did not necessarily play bad, but they had almost no impact on the game. Fair or not, we need more from them.
We need Allen to go out and dominate the game. We need Brooks to show off his stuff and make plays. They were mediocre at best, and with the secondary just not showing up, that cost the defense dearly.
Defensive Line: C-
The defensive line was a lot like the linebackers, where the actual play was not terrible. Broderick Washington and Eli Howard made plays, and I liked the pressure they brought.
Yet, similar to the linebackers, we need more. There were too many plays Ole Miss had their way with the line and Ta’amu would have all day to throw. Also, there were too many big holes on run plays. This group had the best game of the defense, but in a day like that it really was not hard.
Gibbs called a bad defensive game, and the team did not look ready to play. There was no discipline, too much celebrating, and a lack of turnovers. The turnovers in particular are how Gibbs hangs his hat.
It was all around too easy for Ole Miss to move the ball. When they ran the ball, they gashed us for big plays, and there was no part of the passing game that did not work for Ole Miss.
I thought Gibbs had things changed, but it is clear we are light years from a successful defense. Lamar offers the staff a chance to right the ship, but after that disappointment don’t expect the fans to every be that excited about defense again.