* The victory was not without a price as Porter Gustin suffered a fractured ankle and will be out for the remainder of the season. He will have surgery this week and it’s a 3-4 month recovery, and he’ll rehab with the goal of being able to work out for the NFL folks during the draft process.
* The injury for Porter happened at the 2:30 mark, on their last drive. He got tied up with two blockers. It’s just as sad as all get out. I was with him when he got the x-ray and he took it extremely hard. He’s just such a force of nature, a superhero, he’s Thor. It’s going to hurt all of us to not have him out there.
* As far as the game, one of our goals on defense was to hold two of best playermakers under their usual number. Laviska Chenault was averaging 140 yards per game and we held him to 72. McMillian was averaging over 100 yards rushing and we held him to 32. We also wanted to make things hard on their quarterback, we wanted to get into the backfield and apply pressure, and we did that with 4 sacks.
* On offense, there was some good and some to work on. Our protections were important to allow us to take some deep ball shots, we only had one sack and that ball was held a little too long. And our skill players made big plays, Pittman and Vaughns and St. Brown. The quarterback showed poise and just settled in and played ball, but we need to eliminate those young player mistakes. Would love to see more run game, they had a stacked box and we missed a couple reads.
* Injury updates: Olaijah Griffin (shoulder), Jonathan Lockett (hip), Brandon Pili (AC sprain), Palaie Gaoteote (dinged, day-to-day in concussion protocol), Cameron Smith (hamstring)
How will you look back on Porter Gustin’s career?
“As the ultimate teammate, the ultimate leader. He set the tone by example, and then this past year he really became more of a vocal leader and took so many of the young guys under his wing. I’m so proud of the man he became during his time here, and he’s a guy who will play this game for a long, long time”
J.T. Daniels put up big numbers in the first half but not so much in the second half, what happened there?
“As it turned out we only got the ball twice in the third quarter and we were running the ball more at that point, so that impacted what the quarterback did.”
Who will take over for Porter at OLB?
“We’ve got several guys we can get involved. Jordan Iosefa and Christian Rector both saw time there last year, Hunter Echols is someone that Porter really worked with a lot, Kana’I Mauga,Malik Dorton, Liam Jimmons or even Connor Murphy. We’ve got a Greyhound package for pass rush situations where Palaie comes into that spot.”