Preseason breakdown: Defensive Backs
Part V of the previews. With this the attention shifts to the defense.
Consensus heading into the season
This is the only area not raising concerns among the faithful. Three of the four starters return and there is good depth around them.
Backups and Hopefuls
Everyone around the team is expecting Marcellus Bowman to have a big year. He emerged last year as a big hitter and playmaker with speed. His INT return against FSU was a thing of beauty. Since then, the hype has only grown. Even Spaz has been singing his praises publicly.
The Real Question
What are we going to do with all of these guys? Former DBs Fox and LeGrande have already been moved to other positions and we still don’t have enough snaps for the depth we have. Look for many of these names on special teams since it is a place where they can contribute. This is a depth chart built for the pass happy Pac 10 or Big XII. Unfortunately we play in the ACC.
My Bold Prediction
We will lead the ACC in interceptions again. With the depleted front seven, teams are more likely to run on us and probably won’t give the secondary as many opportunities to pick off passes. Even with that in mind, I think the ball hawking nature of the secondary will be that much more aggressive this year.
What keeps me up at night?
The big play. While these guys are good, I still fear them getting burnt deep (think NC State and UNC last year). While Bowman and some of the younger safeties have speed, we will still be vulnerable on the deep posts...especially if we are not pressuring the QB.
This is the one area we don’t have to worry about. Talent is there. Depth is there. Coaching is there (regardless of how I feel about Siravo as a Recruiting Coordinator, the DBs have been well coached on his watch). These guys have benefitted from great fronts the past few years. Now it is there turn to step up and carry the load.