Preview 2018: Memphis Tigers. Overdue For A Title

Preview 2018: Memphis Tigers. Overdue For A Title

2018 Preview

Preview 2018: Memphis Tigers. Overdue For A Title

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What You Need To Know About The Memphis Defense

– Eight starters are back from a group that struggled in too many shootouts. It’s not that defense was optional, but teams had to turn it loose to try keeping up the pace. It showed – the Tigers allowed 466 yards and 33 points per game.

Gone is do-it-all linebacker Genard Avery and good-tackling safety Jonathan Cook, but it was a young group overall that should be ready to do a whole lot more. The pains of the youth movement should pay off.

– Technically, the run defense okay, but that’s because everyone spent so much time bombing away. It was death by 1,000 cuts, with offenses dinking and dunking away on a secondary that allowed way too many third down conversions.

Coming off a true freshman season, TJ Carter and his five interceptions is an all-star at one corner, and the combination of Josh Perry and Tyrez Lindsey should beef up the safety situation. There’s talent, but the big stops have to be there.

– There needs to be more of a pass rush, but as long as the defensive front is holding up against the run, it’ll be doing its job. O’Bryan Goodson is a big anchor on the nose, but he needs the production around him to get into the backfield on a regular basis.

Mostly, the plays behind the line came from the linebackers, and Avery is done along with Shareef White from the middle. However, Curtis Atkins is a good-sized defender on the weakside, and Tim Hart should be a statistical star in place of White.

Biggest Key To The Memphis Defense

Third down stops. The Tigers don’t seem to care too much about time of possession, and the offense does score fast, but it’s still not okay to allow teams to convert close to 46% of their third down tries.

In the two losses to UCF, the Knights connected on a whipping 18-of-31 chances – they kept things moving – but it was a problem all year.

The pass rush has to be better, the 318 first downs allowed were way too many, and the D just has to be able to get off the field.

NEXT: Top Players, Final Prediction & What Will Happen

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