College Football News Preview 2021: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the LSU football season with what you need to know.
– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
– Top Players | Keys To The Season
– What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
– LSU Football Schedule Analysis
– LSU Tigers Previews
2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015
LSU Tigers College Football Preview 2021: Offense
– There was no way to possibly match the historic steamroller of a 2019 attack, but what 2020 LSU had to do with its offense was beyond a rebuild – and it showed.
The O went from becoming the standard for offensive greatness to a not-that-bad 434 yards and 32 points per game. It was a wildly inconsistent offense that defined the idea of growing pains, and now there’s a whole lot of talent returning for new offensive coordinator Jake Peetz.
As the very least, Peetz – a young coach with mostly NFL assistant experience – will try to get the 2019 offensive style back after working last year with Joe Brady at Carolina.
– The quarterback situation became a whole lot clearer this offseason. It was supposed to be Myles Brennan’s gig going into last year – and he was brilliant in just three games of work. He threw for over 1,100 yards with 11 touchdowns and three picks, but he was lost for the year with an abdominal injury. It should be his job again now that he’s back … maybe.
TJ Finley had some big moments and looked the part of a potentially special passer, but he transferred to Auburn. That all but locked up at least the No. 2 job – and more likely No. 1A – for Max Johnson, a 6-5, 219-pound sophomore who wasn’t quite accurate enough, but he threw for almost 1,100 yards with eight scores and a pick. He finished off last year with three touchdown passes in the win over Florida, and threw for 435 yards and three scores in the win over Ole Miss.
The receivers are there to make the passing game go – but this is still a slight area of reloading. Leading pass catcher Terrace Marshall is gone, but sophomore Kayshon Boutte led the team with 735 yards and five scores, 6-4 Jaray Jenkins averaged over 17 yards per catch, and … it’s LSU. There’s plenty of high-end talent working into the mix – even if the experience isn’t quite there.
Tight end Arik Gilbert took off for Georgia – that’s a massive hit – but 6-7 Kole Taylor is a massive target, and there’s a deep group of decent options behind him. There’s no Gilbert, though.
– The ground attack was a problem. It sputtered too much averaging just 122 yards per game, but at least the veteran backs are in place to do more if the line can get the job done – that’s the hope.
232-pound Tyrion Davis-Price is a big back who led the team with 445 yards per carry, and John Emery averaged over five yards per carry. However, the 1,217 rushing yards were the fewest by a mile in a long, long time – more on that in the Keys To The Season.
The loss of projected OT Dare Rosenthal to the transfer portal is a hit – he’s got top 50 NFL Draft pick potential – but 6-6, 311-pound Cam Wire is a decent veteran who should be fine in the role.
The other four starters are expected to be back, and there’s way, way, way too much next-level talent to be so mediocre again. Expect a night-and-day improvement overall.