Irish Wide Receivers vs Virginia Tech Secondary
There’s no sugarcoating how bad the Virginia Tech defensive backfield has been this season. As mentioned earlier in the article, only seven teams in the country have a worse passing defense than Tech.
Their secondary returns starters from a season ago and most of their position group has experience under their belt. Sophomore Bryce Watts and redshirt freshman Caleb Farley will be seeing the majority of snaps at corner. Farley missed last season with a knee injury but Watts saw action in all 13 games in 2017. Khalil Ladler and Reggie Floyd will hold it down at the two safety positions. Ladler played in every game last season and made two starts while Floyd comes into the game with 92 tackles and four interceptions in his career. Junior Jovann Quillen and redshirt sophomore Divine Deablo will see the field as well and have 40 career games played between the two.
Looking at the roster and how the secondary has played so far this season, Notre Dame has the clear height and talent advantage. Miles Boykin is coming off a career game of 11 receptions for 144 yards while Chase Claypool has scored in two straight games. Chris Finke has also quietly amassed a career high in receptions and yards in a season through the first five games. The play of tight ends Alize Mack, Nic Weishar, and Cole Kmet is promising for the passing game in short yardage and redzone opportunities as well.
If Book can stay protected, extend plays with his feet, and continue playing at the high level he’s been playing at over the last two weeks, there is no reason the Irish shouldn’t find success through the air all night – especially early trying to find a big play to quiet the crowd.