Notre Dame Football: 5 Players who need to step up in the second half
Let’s not waste time rehashing the offensive line’s issues. Everyone knows about the injuries to the left tackle, the youth, and the ultimate failures on the offensive line. Everyone knows that this has a domino effect on the offense, where you then can’t run, which makes you one-dimensional.
Then, quarterbacks don’t have time to throw, because defensive ends are teeing off on them. The entire offensive line needs to step up and start to prove why they’re at Notre Dame, but it’s going to be the senior captain, the only returning starter from last season’s elite line, Jarrett Patterson, who needs to step up most of all.
Patterson plays center, which is vital to the offense. It’s also the most difficult offensive line position. The action requires that you consistently snap the ball, stay low, and block. The snap needs to be the same every time, even if you have to deal with a rotation of quarterbacks. It also requires that you’re faster than anyone else on the field, because of the motion involved in snapping the ball compared to reacting to that snap.
Adding to that, you need to call out all of the pass protections for the offensive line, meaning you need to be as in-tuned to the offense as the quarterback.
It isn’t easy to do, and Patterson needs to step up and lead this struggling offensive line from that center position. He needs to be the rallying cry. This way the team can start running downhill and protecting quarterbacks like they’re used to in the second half.