Louisville football: Grading the Cardinals’ performance against Syracuse

Kei-Trel Clark #13 and Chandler Jones #2 of the Louisville Cardinals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Kei-Trel Clark #13 and Chandler Jones #2 of the Louisville Cardinals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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Jared Goldwire #90 of the Louisville Cardinals (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Defensive Line

This was a position group that I had mixed opinions of. There was missing a face that was not announced in the pregame in Dezmond Tell who provides the best depth at nose tackle.

Meanwhile, Yaya Diaby and Tabarius Peterson both returned at defensive end and were really not much of a factor at all in the game.

Jared Goldwire was one of the stars on the defense early on as he controlled the middle and had a pair of tackles-for-loss and a sack. Goldwire went down with a first half injury but later returned to the game. That was good to see as Goldwire is having a career year.

Tell did not play any snaps on the night as it appeared he was not available to play. He sent out a tweet from his account that he later deleted as well. He was injured late in the game against Virginia last week which could be why he was unavailable.

Behind Goldwire, Micah Bland took the depth snaps at nose tackle and played like a walk-on (because he is one). Louisville actually struggled a fair amount stopping the run up front. Luckily, they did not have to deal with it much as Syracuse was forced into passing situations early and often.

There was not much pressure from the defensive line other than an early sack by Goldwire in a pass rush situation. Outside of Goldwire, Peterson was the only defensive lineman with a pressure (1).

While they did not get all the results in the pass game, I liked the way Peterson and Diaby worked their hands. There was a noticeable difference in the ways they made the offensive line work compared to how it had been in the two games without them.

Overall Grade: B