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|Opp 1st Downs
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|Red Zone Defense
Clearly this is not a defense to be trifled with, even with the loss of both the safeties that helped make LSU's pass defense virtually impenetrable.
DT Glenn Dorsey
With Glenn Dorsey returning for his senior season (he was a projected first round pick), this line could easily be the best in the league. The undeniable star, Dorsey recorded 65 stops last season with 3 sacks and 5.5 TFL. Joining him in the middle will be Marlon Favorite, a former #1 DT prospect and backup to Dorsey, while the DE spots are held down by Tyson Jackson and Ricky Jean-Francois. Jackson led the team in sacks last season with 8.5, wihle Jean-Francois recorded three himself as a redshirt freshman. The line has some quality depth going as well, with So. Al Woods, a Parade All-American, and Charles Alexander, who started six last year and recorded 28 tackles with 2.5 sacks, looking to get plenty of playing time as well.
MLB Darry Beckwith
The Defensive Backs
The one area where a personnel loss could be a problem for LSU is at FS. All-American LaRon Landry was a first round draft choice, and Curtis Taylor has his work cut out for him if he intends to fill those shoes. Luckily for him there's plenty of experience to lean on, with Craig Steltz holding down the SS spot after starting 3 last year, including LSU's Sugar Bowl Irishing of Notre Dame. Seltz recorded 42 stops last year with 1 sack and 1 TFL, while breaking up five passes and becoming the first player in LSU history to intercept a pass in four straight games. Both starting corners return as well, with Chevis Jackson and Jonathan Zenon providing veteran leadership in the backfield. Zenon, in fact, tied Steltz for the most picks (4) last season, and returned two of his for scores, while Jackson led the team in PBUs with 14 and had two picks of his own.
The defense on this team is both talented and deep, a scary combination for any team facing them this season. Tomorrow we'll break down the schedule and see who LSU will have to roll over on their way to a predicted berth in the BCS Title Game.