Manufacture defensive stops
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Louisville football has to be able to find a way to stop the Notre Dame offense.
Notre Dame averages an efficient 11.8 yards per point scored to Louisville’s 14.6 yards per point. This means that the Irish have found ways to get on the board efficiently. Kelly’s squad averaged 11.7 yards per point in 2019, which ranked Notre Dame third among power five teams behind Alabama and Ohio State.
The bottom line is that the Irish are not an exciting, dynamic offense, but they are fantastic in run and pass blocking and consistently move the ball and find ways to get into the end zone.
So how does Louisville football combat that? The Cardinals have really struggled to generate pressure with the defensive line, and the Irish are going to be content to hit check downs and take whatever Louisville gives them in the short to intermediate passing game all day. This will be the challenge for defensive coordinators Bryan Brown and Cort Dennison.
The answer may be as simple as continuing to rotate players in along the front three. Louisville’s defensive MVP against Georgia Tech was probably tackle Jared Goldwire. The big man took advantage of the Cardinals using freshman Dezmond Tell much more frequently. I’d look for fellow freshmen Henry Bryant and Ramon Puryear to potentially rotate in and tackles Ja’Darien Boykin and Zach Edwards.
Bringing in young depth to keep the starters fresh could help combat some ineffectiveness up front and hopefully help Louisville have some sort of push against a talented Notre Dame offensive line.
Louisville has to find a way to manufacture some stops and get the ball back to the offense in order to have any hope of coming out with a victory.