Having Flannigan and Hatcher back will be helpful
The defense will now officially have two of its best linebackers back on the field this Saturday. Eliot said that Flannigan’s biggest attributes are his speed and athleticism, which the defense will be happy to have back. Eliot, will also very pleased with Hatcher in his debut this season after being suspended for the first two games.
Eliot said that Flannigan handled his injury and sidelining “like a true veteran.” Flannigan was constantly engaged on the sidelines and in meetings, waiting to be given the green light. “He would stand back behind as the plays were going on and take a step and tell himself where he would go. He had read the play and so he handled it like a true veteran and I expect him not to miss a beat,” Eliot said.
Preparing for another dual-threat quarterback
Missouri’s quarterback, Maty Mauk, has the ability to make plays with both his arm and his feet. The defense struggled with the dual-threat quarterback on Saturday with Will Girier. Eliot said that the coaches went over film to show the players how they can improve on that and get better at containing the quarterback. The key this week will be to keep Maty Mauk in the pocket.
“But with these athletic quarterbacks, you gotta be smart in your rush lanes, make sure that you’re very conscious of where he is. If he pulls it down and tries to take off within your rush lane, then you gotta tackle him,”Eliot said.
Eliot is happy with the young guys on the defense
A lot of freshman and sophomores have made some difference making plays on the defense this season. Defensive back and true freshman, Chris Westry, sealed the South Carolina victory with an interception that earned him the SEC Freshman of the Week honor. Eliot mentioned others including Darius West, Derrick Baity, Denzil Ware and Josh Allen as players who will contribute this season. The future of the defense will be just fine in my opinion.
The defense wants a shutout
When talking about the defense’s play this season, Josh Forrest said he thinks the defense has played well overall “but I sill feel like we got a lot of improvement to do. We haven’t held anyone scoreless yet.” When asked if the defense is looking for a shutout, Forrest said, “that’s what we are all looking for.”
Injury report: Defensive tackle, Reggie Meant is still questionable for the Missouri game.
- Ryan Flannigan confirmed to the media that his injury was a nerve issue.