Level speed — please engage
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.
#0 Braden Lenzy, WR
Braden Lenzy’s recruitment was a wild ride, and in the end, Notre Dame won a battle that often times eludes them. Lenzy committed to the Irish in February of 2017, and the class looked like it was off to a great start. This wasn’t only a 4-Star wide receiver, he was also a first class track star with speed to burn. When Braden decommitted that June and immediately gave a verbal pledge to the Oregon Ducks (an elite track program) it really looked like this was all over. Fast forward about 6 months, and the Irish were able to change his mind just in time for the early signing period.
Despite Lenzy’s considerable speed and athleticism, he did not see the field in 2018. His slight frame still needed more Matt Balis polish, but he made a tremendous splash in 2019. As a sophomore, Lenzy racked up 454 yards rushing and receiving combined with 4 touchdowns. His touchdowns were absolute highlights as they included a 51 yard run against the USC Trojans and a 61 yard run against Boston College. As bright as the second half of 2019 was for Lenzy, and hopes for an explosive 2020 ran high — his 2020 season was cut drastically short due to injuries and otherwise.
THE RESTAURANT THAT FITS
Braden Lenzy is a lover of anime, and I can think of no other eating establishment that correlates more with Japanese animation than Taco Bell — America’s bastardized version of Mexican food. (It actually doesn’t fit — but at the same time fits perfectly).
It really is hard to tell right now what the future holds for Braden Lenzy. If he’s hungry (and has a little better luck with injuries) he might become one of the most important pieces of the Irish offense. Notre Dame really has to become much more explosive in 2021 as they bring about a rebuilt offense line — long drives of 10 plays or more may not be as common as they once were. With Lenzy’s speed, we’ve seen the Irish use him in both the passing and the running game, and I don’t think there’s any real reason that ND won’t try to do more this year. Personally, I’d like to see the Irish use Braden in more of a slot role, but I doubt that comes to fruition.