Miami football defensive end depth chart entering spring practice

Oct 30, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 30, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

The Miami football team has to replace 2021 starting defensive ends Deandre Johnson and Zach McCloud in 2022. Entering 2022 spring practice Jahfari Harvey and Chantz Williams are the likely first-team DEs. Behind Harvey and Williams Miami is not very experienced at edge rusher. Spring will be important.

Harvey led the Miami football team’s returning edge rushers with 7.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks in 2021 while having 26 tackles, an interception return for a touchdown and a pass breakup. Williams had 14 tackles,1.5 TFLs, 1.5 sacks and two PBUs in 2021. The competition for snaps at DE should be wide open this spring.

Elijah Roberts is a versatile defensive lineman who can play end or tackle. Thomas Davis and Jabari Ishmael were 2021 signees who have a chance to compete at DE during 2021 spring practice. Davis and Ishmael and will be pushed by 2022 signees Nyjalik Kelly and Cyrus Moss who are both early enrollees.

Miami added DL Jacob Lichtenstein and Antonio Moultire. Lichtenstein and Moultrie can play end and tackle. Head coach Mario Cristobal expects Moultrie to play DT. Moss is the highest-ranked edge rusher on the Miami football roster followed by Williams and Kelly. Williams needs to be more productive to be a starter.

Miami needs more production from its edge rushers in 2022. The Hurricanes were ninth averaging 7.75 TFLs per game, but only 37th with 2.75 sacks per game. Miami has to get back to being the attacking defense they were a few years ago. New Miami DL coach Joe Salave’a tutored Oregon All-American DL Kayvon Thibodeaux.

Next. Miami OL depth chart entering spring practice. dark

Thibodeaux had 49 tackles, 35.5 TFLs, 19 sacks and seven pass breakups in three years with the Ducks. Miami will need a team effort from its edge rushers more than have a dominant player upfront. Thibodeaux was the second-ranked player and pass rusher in the Class of 2019. None of Miami’s players are ranked that high.