FOUR DOWNS: Scott Rabalais breaks down the LSU-Chattanooga game
1. PLUMBING THE WR DEPTHS
The first game in Matt Canada’s new offense resulted in quarterbacks Danny Etling and Myles Brennan hitting a wide variety of targets. They completed 14 passes to seven receivers for 183 yards. That included eight to LSU’s starting trio of receivers: DJ Chark, Russell Gage and Derrick Dillon. Not one catch went to the backup receivers, however: Drake Davis, Stephen Sullivan and Justin Jefferson were shut out. A point of emphasis Saturday should be getting them in the mix.
2. A PIECE OF THE ACTION
Speaking of backups, if LSU’s defense is up to its high standards and the Tigers can be more productive in the red zone, Ed Orgeron should be looking to his bench midway through the third quarter. He managed to get Brennan some playing time last week against BYU, but what about fellow freshman Lowell Narcisse? Orgeron said the focus is to win the game, but there can be secondary goals like this one.
3. SAFETY SQUEEZE
Even after four-plus weeks of preseason drills and one live game, some position battles still rage on. Case in point is free safety. Freshman Grant Delpit started against BYU over senior Ed Paris and made two tackles, but Paris countered with a tackle and three pass deflections. Both appeared to split the possessions fairly evenly. Can Delpit or Paris create some separation from the other before LSU opens Southeastern Conference play next week at Mississippi State?
4. THREE MORE BATTLES
It’s a true freshman’s world at right guard, where Saahdiq Charles started against BYU but split time with Ed Ingram. Does that continue? At middle linebacker, Donnie Alexander is expected to suit up this week, but true freshman Tyler Taylor (two tackles) may not want to step aside. Orgeron wasn’t pleased with kickoffs landing short of the goal line, so expect to see a battle between Connor Culp, Cameron Gamble and possibly Jack Gonsoulin.