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Purdue Football: Matchups to Watch

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What are some important matchups to watch Saturday against Minnesota?

TCU v Purdue Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Purdue Defensive Line vs Minnesota Offensive Line

Minnesota’s offensive line is MASSIVE

LT: 6-6, 300 Pounds

LG: 6-5, 315 Pounds

C: 6-5, 300 Pounds

RG: 6-5, 370 Pounds

RT: 6-9, 400 Pounds

I am not great at math but that is near 1,700 pounds of meaty offensive linemen. We have one starting defensive lineman over 300 pounds, as Lawrence Johnson is sitting at 305 pounds.

Purdue will have to use their speed to get around these massive human beings. In the run game, my hat tips towards Minnesota, as we watched them run all over us last season. They carried the ball 41 times for 265 yards, good for 6.5 yards per carry.

This defensive line is still without their Senior leader, Lorenzo Neal Jr, I am worried about the interior defensive line being able to stop the run again. Will we be able to neutralize their size with our speed? Or, will they prove to be more agile than what I am giving them credit for?

Purdue Passing Game vs Minnesota Pass Defense

The big question mark is - will Elijah Sindelar play? Minnesota has yet to play against a quality opponent. They haven’t seen a Quarterback as talented as Elijah Sindelar. If we have to play Plummer again, we may struggle to air it out again. If Eli is in, we will be just fine.

They also have yet to see playmakers like Rondale Moore, Brycen Hopkins and David Bell. We have playmakers all over the field that most teams do not have. Elijah is still the difference maker though. If he plays, we are in business.

Purdue Special Teams vs Minnesota Special Teams

Our special teams has been hit or miss this year. The kicking game has been far superior to the return game. Dellinger hit a 53 yarder our last game! Rondale Moore has made some mistakes with the return game on Punts, but has been solid on kick returns.

Minnesota’s kick return game has been less than great, as they are averaging right at 20 yards per kick return. Their kicker has done well, in their most recent game he was 2 for 2 on field goals, making one from 45.

If we can get quality play on special teams, it will go a long way for us towards a positive outcome.