Notre Dame Fighting Irish Preview 2022: Season Prediction, Breakdown, Key Games, Players

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Preview 2022: Season Prediction, Breakdown, Key Games, Players

College Football Features

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Preview 2022: Season Prediction, Breakdown, Key Games, Players

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Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Keys To The Season, Top Game, Top Transfer, Fun Stats

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Key To The 2022 Offense

The pass protection has to be a whole lot better. 

It was one of the most underappreciated parts of the Brian Kelly era – his offensive lines were phenomenal.

Last year’s front five was supposed to undergo an overhaul, and everyone knew that going into the season.

There were going to be problems with so many new parts being thrown into the mix, but it was all with the idea that the great young prospects – like OTs Blake Fisher and Joe Alt – were going to be part of a dominant group over the coming years. Injuries played a part in all of this.

Even so, it still wasn’t a plus that the offense gave up a whopping 35 sacks, 82 tackles for loss, and sputtered at times for the nation’s 83rd-best running game.

Now with four starters back up front, good depth, and more mobility than Jack Coan under center, the line has to be a positive.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Key To The 2022 Defense

Keep on taking the ball away.

Notre Dame’s defense has been terrific over the last several years, but any mistakes and concerns were often erased by lots and lots of takeaways.

The Irish have come up with 20 or more takeaways in four of the last five years, and they probably would’ve hit the mark in the 2022 outlier with two fewer games they normally would’ve played.

Last year’s defense took things up another notch with 25 takeaways thanks to a steady two or more in nine of the 13 games.

The Irish were 8-1 when coming up with a two or more takeaways – the lone loss was the Fiesta Bowl against Oklahoma State. Before that they won 35 straight games – going back to the 2017 early heartbreaker against Georgia – when they forced multiple turnovers.

Nothings stops. Marcus Freeman is a defensive head coach who’ll keep this team active.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Key Player To The 2022 Season

QB Tyler Buchner, Soph.
Drew Pyne might see time here and there, but this is Buchner’s gig as long as he can stay healthy.

He’s a different kind of quarterback than Jack Coan was – and he’s a bit of a different type of quarterback for Notre Dame. He can throw, but he’s most dangerous on the move as an all-around playmaker.

No, he won’t throw for 3,150 yards and 25 touchdowns and just seven picks like Coan did, but the former starter finished last year with a net -100 rushing yards. The new guy might end the season with well over 500 if everything goes right.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Key Transfer

S Brandon Joseph, Sr.
Seriously, how do you replace a talent like Kyle Hamilton at safety?

You go get one who might be a top ten overall NFL Draft pick like Joseph.

The former Northwestern Wildcat is a two-time All-American who came up with 46 tackles and six interceptions in 2020, and followed it up with 79 stops and three interceptions in 2021.

He’s not the physical force of nature Hamilton was, but he’s smooth as silk, gets all over the field, and shhhhhhhhhhhhh …

He might be better than 14.

Notre Dame Key Game To The 2022 Season

Clemson, Nov. 5
Just assume the opener against Ohio State is a loss on the road, and if it’s not, it’s found money.

After that, going to North Carolina and Syracuse are concerns, and BYU will be dangerous in Las Vegas, but there’s no excuse to not rip though the rest of the slate until that regular season finale at USC.

Except for the date with Clemson.

This is a better Tiger team than last year’s version, but Notre Dame should be as jelled as it’s going to be by early November when South Bend is rocking and rolling.

Let’s just say the quiet part out loud. Beat Clemson, and anything less than 11-1 with the College Football Playoff in the discussion won’t be okay.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: 2021 Fun Stats

– Penalties: Opponents 90 for 705 yards – Notre Dame 73 for 642 yards
– Red Zone TDs: Notre Dame 33-of-50 (66%) – Opponents 18-of-47 (38%)
– 2nd Quarter Scoring: Notre Dame 154 – Opponents 73

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Season Prediction, What Will Happen NEXT

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