After giving up a few big plays early, the Oregon defense held strong for the rest of the game against the Colorado Buffaloes. Here's what I saw during the Ducks' win:
Who wants to run into Prevot while trying to catch a pass?
Safeties not holding up their end of the bargain
The whole idea of being a safety in pass coverage is that you're the last line of defense and nobody gets behind you. Though it appeared that Nick Aliotti was attempting to cover Colorado's Paul Richardson one-one-one, there's no excuse for his getting behind the secondary as much as he was able to, not to mention his reverse-turned-touchdown pass. Be thankful the Oregon secondary played like that against Colorado, and not UCLA.
Ducks' bend-but-don't-break defense is back for another season
Sure they gave up big plays and a ton of yards against what amounts to a one man offense, but they also held Colorado to 0-12 on third down through three quarters and didn't allow a touchdown outside of Richardson's trick play. Doesn't matter how man yards a defense gives up if they don't translate to points on the scoreboard.
Drop ends playing all over the field.
Over the course of Saturday's game, I saw Tony Washington line up as a rush end, defensive end, outside linebacker, and in press on a wide receiver. Not only that, both Washington and Torrodney Prevot dropped into zone coverage from their rush end spot and were as far as 10 yards back from the line of scrimmage. If I'm a wide receiver, I don't want to see either of those guys as I go across the middle.
Tyson Coleman is indeed the everyman of the defense.
Coleman lined up at both outside linebacker positions against Colorado, as well as at rush end. Remember too that he's taking snaps at strong safety during the week. Considering the questionable depth at linebacker, it's going to prove crucial at some point that Coleman can play so many positions for the Ducks. Keep an eye on Joe Walker as well, his tackling has improved tenfold over the last few weeks.
See anything else that stood out on the defensive side of the ball? Fill us in below!