As unlikely as that sounds, their dream took a couple of big hits this week, as Wednesday just was an awful day for the Panthers.
News broke yesterday that Pitt starting linebacker and captain, Quintin Wirginis suffered a non-contact knee injury in practice and will miss the rest of the 2018 season. This is a huge loss for the Panthers as Wirginis was their best defensive player by far this season. Quintin is the team leader in tackles, tackles for loss, sacks, and forced fumbles.
There is still no word about who will replace Wirginis in the lineup for Pitt. Both Elias Reynolds and Chase Pine (a former ND recruiting target) will battle for the position this week.
Pitt will also lose their starting tight end, Tyler Sear. Apparantly, Sear is leaving the team for personal reasons. It’s been suggested that those reasons could be the fact that Pitt just doesn’t throw to the tight end, and they are glorified offensive linemen in this system.
From Cardiac Hill:
It’s easy to crush Pitt offensive coordinator Shawn Watson on this, but it might be a case of the chicken or the egg. Is it that Pitt doesn’t use tight ends in its offense, or that the tight ends aren’t good enough in the passing game to use? Pitt has also struggled in pass protection, and offensive line coach Borbely actually mentioned that one of the sacks Pitt gave up on Saturday could be attributed to Tyler Sear. Sear also had a drop of a shovel pass during the game as well. Overall, the tight ends have 6 catches for only 45 yards through 6 games.