Nebraska Football should see improvements on defense come the fall.
It’s no secret that the Nebraska defensive line needs to improve. They were abysmal last year in several areas. They gave up 195.8 rushing yards per game and five yards per carry. In addition, opponents had no problems getting into the end zone. Nebraska football allowed 29 rushing touchdowns in 2018. It is safe to say the run defense left a lot to be desired.
However, there are a pair of lineman, who also happen to be brothers, that could help fix the hole in the running game. Damion and Darrion Daniels enter the 2019 season ready to make some noise. They have a lot to prove on a defensive unit that is going to experience some turnover. Who knows how everything will turn out. They may be better, they may be worse, but one thing is for certain: the Daniels brothers will be in the middle of it.
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Given the talent that both of them possess, that would be a very positive development for the Nebraska football defense. They are large in stature and size and that is a great thing. Especially in the Big Ten where offense is rampant, having two players that can stop the running game is going to be crucial. Not only that, Darrion is especially adept at rushing the passer. That will undoubtedly help a Nebraska football unit that recorded only 25 sacks in 2018. To put it simply, the more pressure these two can bring to the table, the better. They don’t even have to record sacks necessarily. All they need to do is bring pressure. If they can be disruptive, that is a huge step in upsetting passing offenses.
So far during spring practices, they are proving to be leaders. That is great for a unit that is going to be without the contributions of Freedom Akinmoladun and Mick Stoltenberg. Leadership is going to be needed on that side of the football, and so far it sounds like the Daniels brothers are providing it both in terms of play and how they conduct themselves on the field. Together with the Davis brothers, the defensive side of the football could see a successful family affair.
"“Damion Daniels and Darrion Daniels, those guys are alpha males,” defensive line coach Tony Tuioti told Steven M. Sipple and Parker Gabriel . “That’s great to have. That’s one thing that we always try to find is a nose guard that’s a real war daddy. Those guys have that mentality, so they give us a chance up front to dominate and win A-gap to A-gap. Then you’ve got some athletic guys in the Davis brothers (Khalil and Carlos). Those guys are really, really good players.”"
What that quote tells me is that the Nebraska football defense is no longer going to be something that opponents can just run over. That is a great sign. It seems like head coach Scott Frost and Tuioti are trying to build a defensive culture of toughness. That’s what I like to hear, and that’s what was missing last year from the defense.
If all goes according to plan, the Nebraska football defense will no longer be a doormat to opposing offenses. That prospect alone should be a welcome development for Nebraska football in 2019.