Wake Forest Demon Deacons College Football Preview 2021: Defense
– The defense struggled. There wasn’t enough of a pass rush, the pass defense was spotty – to be kind – and it struggled on third downs. It allowed 436 yards and 33 points per game, getting destroyed over the last three games – turnovers were a problem in the loss to Wisconsin, to be fair – giving up 146 points. Enough starters are back to be better, starting with …
– The defensive line has a few nice parts. There might not be a ton of bulk, but everyone can move.
Top pass rusher Carlos (Boogie) Basham is gone, but tackle Miles Fox was the best on the team at coming up with tackles for loss and Jacorey Johns is a nice end who should shine after stepping into a bigger role.
– Losing Basham is the biggest deal up front, and not having around leading tackler Ja’Cquez Williams in the linebacking corps is a big deal. He led the team with 73 stops in an all-star season, but 6-2, 235-pound Ryan Smenda is back after finishing third with 52 tackles and safety Traveon Redd functions like an outside linebacker – he was fourth with 46 stops.
The secondary was able to come up with a slew of picks, but it also got roasted way too often. All the starters are expected to be back around 63-tackle safety Nick Anderson and senior corner Ja’Sir Taylor – a nice tackler who broke up six passes and came up with two picks.