Duke’s defensive line rotation will be a little thinner than desired for Saturday’s game at Georgia Tech.
Starting defensive end Dezmond Johnson will miss his third straight game with a leg injury, and Jamal Wallace who can play both tackle and end, is also out with a lower body injury. Wallace was hurt late in the Miami game.
The Blue Devils will have a four-man end rotation, with Jordan DeWalt-Ondijo, Jonathan Jones, Kyler Brown and Britton Grier. Head coach David Cutcliffe still feels like there are five or six players that can rotate through the tackle positions.
Strong defensive line play is even more critical than normal against Georgia Tech’s spread-option attack. The key to stopping an offense designed to move methodically down the field in three and four-yard chunks is to make tackles at or behind the line of scrimmage, leaving the Yellow Jackets in uncomfortable third-and-long situations.
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As defensive coordinator Jim Knowles put it Wednesday, speaking about the down linemen “If they have a good day, we’ll have a good day.”
Starting running back Shaquille Powell is the only other Blue Devil on the injury report. He is questionable with a lower-body injury.