3. Defensive tackle
There are currently two vacant spots along the defensive line heading into the 2021 season and a couple of guys are favorites to snag the starting jobs.
With Austin Faoliu gone after an impressive four-year career in which he accounted for 113 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss, and six sacks, one player will be tasked with trying to replace him. That’s going to be one heck of an ask for one defensive lineman on the roster. Next to Faoliu, but also gone, was Jordon Scott who finished his career with 110 tackles, three sacks, and 13 tackles for loss. That’s a heck of a lot of production to replace.
So who’s going to do it?
In the new defensive system, the Ducks will have a nose tackle and defensive tackle in a 3-4 look. Early favorites to replace Scott and Faoliu are redshirt junior Popo Aumavae and sophomore Brandon Dorlus who could also act as an end. Both were relatively quiet last season with 26 total tackles, two tackles for loss, and a sack.
Other players who could push those two for snaps are redshirt freshmen Kristian Williams, Keyon Ware-Hudson, and Sua’ava Poti, and freshmen Keanu Williams, Jaylen Smith, Jayson Jones, and Maceal Afaese.
This is a young group of guys, but talent isn’t lacking.