Notre Dame football: Braden Lenzy needs a Kevin Austin-like final season

The Notre Dame football team is short when it comes to numbers at the wide receiver position, but that does not mean the group is not loaded with talent.

During the 2021 college football season, the Notre Dame football team needed someone to step up and be the No. 1 wideout on the roster. For Kevin Austin Jr., this was a chance to not only help the program out after an injury-riddled career but also a chance to bolster his NFL resume.

Austin Jr. blew away all expectations in his final season in South Bend, catching 48 passes for nearly 900 yards and seven touchdowns. When you consider he only had six catches in his entire career up until that point, you can see why the Jacksonville Jaguars made him an undrafted free agent signing after the 2022 NFL Draft.

He put together an excellent season, and then a tremendous draft season, putting himself back on the map, and earning a shot at the next level.

In 2022, the Irish once again need a veteran wideout to step up, and that wideout could be a player who has also struggled to stay healthy, but one with all the talent in the world.

Notre Dame football needs a monster year from Braden Lenzy

When it comes to talent, Braden Lenzy has everything you look for in a legitimate WR1, and the hope is that he can be just that in what should be his final season in South Bend. Lenzy appeared in a career-high 12 games last season and had some special moments, but he is going to need to be far more consistent for the Irish in 2022.

With blazing speed and the ability to take the lid off a defense, Lenzy could see the kind of production Austin saw last year, especially with so many question marks surrounding this wide receiver group. The Irish know what they have in Lenzy, as well as Avery Davis and Lorenzo Styles Jr., but outside of that, it is going to be interesting to see who steps up.

The Irish are keying on the wide receiver position in the 2023 recruiting cycle, and have already landed a legitimate threat in  Braylon James. In 2022, the group is talented, but very thin, making Lenzy an important piece of the puzzle, and one that has more than enough skills to make a real impact this upcoming season.