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This Guy Plays Notre Dame Football: #27 JD Bertrand, Linebacker

Defensive playing time may be hard to come by for Bertrand this season

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have a roster full of players, and we want to talk about them all. One Foot Down’s player profile series will, once again, take a look at every single one of them, and hopefully we all learn a little bit more about these guys, and Notre Dame’s chances for the upcoming 2021 season.

#27 JD Bertrand, LB

JD Bertrand committed to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on November 19, 2018 as a member of the 2019 recruiting class. Bertrand selected the Irish over offers from Colorado, Florida, Georgia, and Wisconsin. Bertrand held a 4-star ranking per 247Sports Composite Rankings. He was rated as the 19th best outside linebacker, 39th best prospect in the state of Georgia, and 366th best overall prospect in the class of 2019. He attended Blessed Trinity Catholic, and his hometown is Roswell, Georgia. He currently stands 6’1’’ and weighs 228 pounds.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 28 Camping World Bowl - Notre Dame v Iowa State Photo by Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

During his redshirt freshman campaign, Bertrand played exclusively on special teams in 4 games but did not record a statistic. As a sophomore, Bertrand played in 11 of 12 possible games during the season. His biggest impact came against South Florida and Florida State, recording 3 tackles in each game. During the 2020 season, he recorded 7 total tackles.

The Restaurant That Fits

Qdoba

Qdoba Mexican Grill... Photo by Nicolaus Czarnecki/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

In my opinion, Qdoba and Chipotle are pretty much the same restaurant. Their menus are nearly identical, and I struggle to differentiate the taste of the two much of the time. However, Chipotle has become more popular in our current culture. People seem to go there more often as there are more locations throughout the country and as a result, are more accessible to most people. Similarly, JD Bertrand seems to possess all the necessary physical and mental tools to succeed on Notre Dame’s defense. Yet, he can’t change the fact that a 2-year starter (Drew White) and a successful role player in 2020 (Bo Bauer) have edged ahead of him on the depth chart. As a 4-star prospect out of the state of Georgia, the talent is undeniable. However, White and Bauer have built more of a trust factor with the coaches heading into the 2021 season.

2021 Outlook

Following Drew White’s high ankle sprain during spring practice, Bertrand saw a major rise in the number of snaps with the first-team defense. However, Bertrand will need to become a mainstay on special teams in order to receive regular playing time during the upcoming season. Unless an injury occurs during fall camp, Drew White and Bo Bauer figure to receive a lion’s share of the snaps at the middle linebacker position, leaving a seemingly impossible pathway to regular playing time on the defensive side of the ball for Bertrand.

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