In a new defensive scheme, Jalen Redmond on track for breakout season

·2 min read

After losing three players from their defensive line to the NFL, the Oklahoma Sooners will turn over 75% of its front four from a year ago. With that much turnover, the Oklahoma Sooners will need to find new stars to rely on upfront.

One such player is returning defensive tackle Jalen Redmond. Redmond played just 309 snaps last season but was an important piece for the Sooners down the stretch. Redmond enters 2022 as a key piece to Brent Venables’ defense.

Steve Lassan of Athlon Sports expects Jalen Redmond to be one of the breakout players in college football in 2022.

Considering the track record of new Oklahoma coach Brent Venables in producing standouts along the defensive line, it’s safe to assume the Sooners will have a couple of all-conference candidates at the end of 2022. Redmond is our pick to shine, as he has accumulated 21.5 tackles for a loss and 10 sacks over 24 games since ’18. – Lassan, Athlon Sports

Redmond has the explosiveness and the first step to be a terror for the Oklahoma Sooners. His ability to create penetration will make life difficult on opposing offensive lines and quarterbacks in 2022. The talent’s always been there, but the good fortune of health hasn’t.

After sitting out the 2020 season due to COVID concerns, Redmond was limited to eight games in 2021. And in those eight games, he was still incredibly productive. He had eight tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks. Had he played the full 13-game season, that would translate to six sacks and 13 tackles for loss.

Redmond came through in the most important games of the season. Against Baylor, Iowa State, Oklahoma State, and Oregon, Redmond came up with eight total tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and two sacks. And, of course, there was the fumble return for a touchdown against Iowa State.

In 10 games as a redshirt freshman, Redmond led the Oklahoma Sooners with 6.5 sacks. He had more sacks as a redshirt freshman than Ronnie Perkins. Let that sink in.

With Perrion Winfrey off to the NFL, the onus is on Redmond to be the wrecking ball on the interior for the Oklahoma Sooners. In a Venables defense that has produced the most sacks and the most tackles for loss over the last decade, Redmond could fit right in.

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Story originally appeared on Sooners Wire