Off-Season Hot Takes
Welcome to Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Positional Hot Takes. As a reminder to all of the readers, this is HEAVILY driven by you and comments are strongly encouraged. The thought here is to bring in your HOT takes only as this is the off season. The payoff will be much longer, but these pages will live in perpetuity (big word) for you to tell your friends, family, and strangers that you, “called it”. Since this isn’t geared towards specific games (there will be Hot/Cold takes for the Spring Game), I will go position by position with my own takes.
As a reminder, these are meant to be bold and spicy, so let’s get the rolllling.
Another position that is going to be going through a big change, like QB, is running back. The Irish are losing a critical piece in Kyren Williams. However, they do bring back some very exciting talent, all of which are different types of backs. You have the presumed lead back/speedster Chris Tyree, all purpose/smooth back in Logan Diggs, the downhill bruiser in Audric Estime, and the unproven, but highly touted freshman in Jadarian Price. The most exciting part for me is that all of these guys should have roles and are ready to contribute...Not to mention that Tyler Buchner is a dynamic running threat himself.
5 different players will be a game leading rusher in 2022.
As mentioned above, all of the backs bring something completely unique to the table. With the lack of depth at WR, I expect to see a lot of 2 back sets, which could be nightmare scenarios for opposing defenses. Buchner is an elite runner himself, and flank him with Tyree and Diggs?.....Have Estime as an H back lead blocker?....Move Tyree to the slot to match him up against a LB?...As you can see, the talent and depth is there, and Tommy Rees will need to exploit the matchups with his personnel. Now, I said 5...so how do we get there?
- Chris Tyree: Tyree is a burner who was banged up this past year, but we’ve seen what he can do with a crease. In 2021, there were almost no creases, which will be VERY different this year with an improved line. He will have a lot of games where he has more receiving yards than rushing, but he will absolutely lead the charge in multiple games this year. He’ll he is the type of player who could have 6 carries for 120 and 2 tds.
- Logan Diggs: Diggs is the most complete back in terms of balance, vision, and burst. He was almost too patient at times last year, which cost him because the holes were not open for very long. New RBs coach Deland McCullough will work on his technique and Balis will get his lower body even stronger. I expect him to be 1B behind Tyree and finish the year with the most carries of any back.
- Tyler Buchner: Not a RB, I know. But this boy can run and he will have multiple 100 yard rushing performances this year.
- Audric Estime: Guys get banged up and RB, and this year will be no exception. I predict that late in the year in Oct., Estime will completely take over a game. He is the type of back that people do NOT want to tackle, especially in colder weather. Look for him to bust out a big performance against Stanford down the stretch.
- Jadarian Price: I am not totally sure the role Price will have, but he will look to make a late push for carries. Look for Notre Dame to try and stay healthy against UNLV and Syracuse before making the final push to close out the year against some tougher opponents. Price will take advantage of tons of second half carries and lead all carriers in one of those games.