Nebraska Football: Offensive line should be ready to play

(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images) /

The Nebraska Football offensive line has a lot of work cut out for them.

The Nebraska Football offensive is going to be busy on Saturday. They will have to deal with the pass rush of Illinois. At first glance, that may not sound particularly difficult, but this Illinois team is extremely talented.

It will be an interesting matchup for an offensive line that has had some struggles over the past couple of games. This may mean more improvising from Adrian Martinez, and quicker reads when throwing the football. Nevertheless, even the best offensive line would probably struggle against this Illinois group. It’s interesting to see how much defense has become the name of the game for that program. It’s easy to think of them as offensive-minded, but that does not appear to be  the case.

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They have 12 sacks on the season. That ranks them ninth in the country. They are second nationally in tackles for a loss. With 33 tackles for a loss in just three games, they know how to get after the ball carrier. On an offense like Nebraska’s creating space and getting of field is essential to making it function. Illinois has shown that they can handle that type of play.

Offensive coordinator Troy Walters knows that he has a big task ahead of him. This game will not be easy, and with it being on the road, it will make life for Nebraska that much more difficult. However, this offense plays fantastic when it plays up to its full capabilities. It is going to need to have all systems go on Saturday.

"“Big challenge. They want to cause disruption, they get after it up front. They don’t do a whole lot in the back end, but they’re disruptive — they twist, they move a lot up front, so we’ve got our hands full,” NU offensive coordinator Troy Walters said. “I think if we can do a good job of protecting Adrian (Martinez) and giving him clean pocket, there’s throws to be made. But they present a definite challenge in terms of protecting him and keeping him clean."

I will be interested to see exactly what Nebraska Football does to try and stop the pressure on Martinez. Maybe they will focus on getting rid of the ball quicker. Maybe they will offer max protection to one side. I could definitely see this being a game where Martinez will have to scramble out of the pocket a little bit more. If nothing else, he may have to do that for his own safety.

This will be just one of the many exciting subplots to watch on Saturday. I can’t wait to see it unfold.