How Saturday scrimmage showed that LSU Football will succeed in 2021

Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports /

LSU football held its first fall scrimmage on Saturday and it gave us a glimpse (via reports) of why the Tigers are set up to succeed in 2021.

Tigers head coach Ed Orgeron spoke with reporters after the scrimmage and he made it clear that LSU’s defense “won” the scrimmage.

From 247Sports:

"Ed Orgeron: “Overall, it was a great scrimmage, mostly dominated by the defense and the quickness of the defensive line. We gave up very few big plays with the first team and I thought we tackled well and put a lot of pressure on the quarterback.”"

Orgeron specifically pointed out the defensive line as having a great day. Coach O also noted that starting quarterback Max Johnson was 11-19 for 127 yards and a touchdown, while true freshman quarterback Garrett Nussmeier was 11-17 for 225 yards and three touchdowns.

According to Orgeron, Nussmeier made some nice plays with his legs.

Why the defense “winning” the scrimmage is a great sign for LSU football

I can understand if there’s some concern about the offense after the defense performed better on Saturday.

But I don’t think fans should be worried at all. In fact, I think they should be excited.

LSU went 5-5 last season because the defense failed to perform at an SEC level.

If the Tigers would’ve had just a middle-of-the-road defense in 2020, they go 7-3 (an average defense beats Mississippi State and Missouri).

While the offense last season didn’t play at the same level as the 2019 offense, it was still an efficient offense that scored plenty of points.

LSU averaged 32 points per game last season. There was obviously room for improvement, but it’s not like the offense was struggling to score points.

With Jake Peetz and DJ Mangas — disciples of former Tigers passing game coordinator Joe Brady — running the show, the feeling is that the offense will be just fine in 2021. I don’t think anyone is concerned about LSU scoring points this season — especially with sophomore wide receiver Kayshon Boutte looking like a future first-round NFL draft pick.

The defensive side of the ball is where the Tigers have a lot to prove. If LSU is going to compete for the SEC West division title, the defense has to be significantly better than it was last season (giving up 34.9 points per game isn’t going to get it done against teams like Alabama and Texas A&M).

Next. Clemson transfer LB came to LSU to be challenged in the SEC. dark

Saturday’s scrimmage showed us that LSU’s defense is on the right track. If it can stop the Tigers’ first-team offense — which is one of the better offenses this defense will face — then it’s a great sign that LSU’s defense will be ready to show out on Saturdays this fall.