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Analyzing Arizona’s defense vs UCLA with Pro Football Focus

arizona-wildcats-ucla-bruins-final-score-2021-pac12-football-jordan-mccloud-red-zone-recap Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Arizona Wildcats came off their bye week and played the UCLA Bruins tough until the fourth quarter when UA lost it’s starting QB with major leg and knee injuries.

Let’s take a look through the Pro Football Focus lens, in conjunction with my analysis, to see how Arizona’s defense performed against the Ducks.

As a reminder, see the grading scale below:


Defensive line

The d-line did not have a good game as a unit. They were gashed all night by UCLA and they missed six tackles in total.

Jalen Harris played a good game against the run and had a hurry that caused DTR to throw an inaccurate ball and caused a Bruin o-lineman to hold him. He did miss a tackle and that is something that has been rather uncharacteristic of him. He does have time to clean it up though and I’m eager to see how he bounces back against Colorado.

Kyon Barrs was a bright spot for the D-line. He continues to be UA’s best tackler along the front and has yet to miss a tackle this season. His streak of getting at least half a TFL ended against the Bruins.

Trevon Mason had an uncharacteristic game as well. He missed two tackles which isn’t normal for him. However, he did have two QB pressures. Weirdly enough, PFF ranked him pretty low in the pass rushing category and I don’t agree with that ranking.

Mo Diallo continued to struggle with missed tackles this season. He missed three against the Bruins, which is a season high. He did, however, do a great job in the pass rush. He earned half a sack and a hurry. He is clearly a disruptive force off the edge, but he’ll need to start solidifying his tackling.

Nahe Sulunga, Paris Shand, Dion Wilson Jr., and Leevel Tatum III also saw action in the game.

STAT LINES

  • Trevon Mason: 5 tackles
  • Mo Diallo: 4 tackles, 1.5 TFL, 0.5 sack
  • Kyon Barrs: 2 tackles
  • Jalen Harris: 1 tackle
  • Paris Shand: 1 tackle
  • Dion Wilson Jr.: N/A
  • Leevel Tatum III: N/A
  • Nahe Sulunga: N/A

SNAP COUNTS

  • Jalen Harris: 64
  • Trevon Mason: 52
  • Kyon Barrs: 50
  • Mo Diallo: 48
  • Paris Shand: 16
  • Dion Wilson Jr.: 5
  • Leevel Tatum III: 3
  • Nahe Sulunga: 1

OVERALL

  • Highest: Jalen Harris (62.2)
  • Lowest: Dion Wilson Jr. (24.5)

TACKLING

  • Highest: Kyon Barrs (73.4)
  • Lowest: Mo Diallo (23.7)

PASS RUSH

  • Highest: Mo Diallo (61.1)
  • Lowest: Paris Shand (57.1)

RUN DEFENSE

  • Highest: Jalen Harris (63.2)
  • Lowest: Dion Wilson Jr. (28.6)

COVERAGE

  • Highest: Trevon Mason (60.0)
  • Lowest: N/A

Linebackers

The linebacker corps had an okay day but nothing spectacular.

Anthony Pandy continues to be a tackling machine and one of the best tacklers on the team. He didn’t have a good game in coverage, however, and that really drove down his overall grade.

Christian Young, who has been automatic when it comes to tackling, missed his first tackle of the season. His run defense drove down his overall grade but I think he had a better game than he graded out.

Treshaun Hayward had an average game. He missed a tackle but was around the ball for the most part. He did go down for a little bit with a knee injury so that might be something to watch for during the Colorado game.

Kenny Hebert, who has improved every week, had a down game. His pass rush wasn’t as good as it usually is and he also missed a tackle. He did, however, have a timely forced fumble to stop a driving Bruin offense in the second half.

Rashie Hodge Jr. also saw some time on the field.

STAT LINES

  • Anthony Pandy: 13 tackles
  • Christian Young: 7 tackles
  • Treshaun Hayward: 6 tackles, 1 fumble recovery
  • Kenny Hebert: 4 tackles, 1 forced fumble
  • Rashie Hodge Jr.: N/A

SNAP COUNTS

  • Christian Young: 67
  • Anthony Pandy: 65
  • Treshaun Hayward: 62
  • Kenny Hebert: 35
  • Rashie Hodge Jr.: 6

OVERALL

  • Highest: Kenny Hebert (59.5)
  • Lowest: Rashie Hodge Jr. (35.2)

TACKLING

  • Highest: Anthony Pandy (84.1)
  • Lowest: Kenny Hebert (50.5)

PASS RUSH

  • Highest: Rashie Hodge Jr. (58.9)
  • Lowest: Kenny Hebert (52.5)

RUN DEFENSE

  • Highest: Kenny Hebert (62.9)
  • Lowest: Christian Young (42.6)

COVERAGE

  • Highest: Christian Young (62.2)
  • Lowest: Anthony Pandy (32.8)

Cornerbacks

The corners had a very good game. Though, PFF graded one too low in my opinion.

Christian Roland-Wallace is very good. He had one ball thrown his way and it was incomplete. Don Brown decided to get him involved in other ways and CRW started blitzing. He ended up with his first part of a sack in his career.

Treydan Stukes started in place of Isaiah Rutherford, who was out due to illness. PFF ranked him low overall and in coverage and I don’t agree with it. They even graded him very low after missing his first tackle of the season. Out of four targets, he allowed only one catch for 10 yards. He also had a PBU.

Malik Hausman came in and played admirably in the nickel. He didn’t record any stats.

STAT LINES

  • Treydan Stukes: 4 tackles, 1 PBU
  • Christian Roland-Wallace: 3 tackles, 0.5 TFL, 0.5 sacks
  • Malik Hausman: N/A

SNAP COUNTS

  • Christian Roland-Wallace: 69
  • Treydan Stukes: 69
  • Malik Hausman: 11

OVERALL

  • Highest: Malik Hausman (72.1)
  • Lowest: Treydan Stukes (49.0)

TACKLING

  • Highest: Christian Roland-Wallace (77.7)
  • Lowest: Treydan Stukes (53.1)

PASS RUSH

  • Highest: Malik Hausman (77.6)
  • Lowest: Christian Roland-Wallace (77.4)

RUN DEFENSE

  • Highest: Treydan Stukes (61.5)
  • Lowest: Christian Roland-Wallace (55.2)

COVERAGE

  • Highest: Christian Roland-Wallace (68.3)
  • Lowest: Treydan Stukes (44.6)

Safeties

The safeties had a very good game.

Gunner Maldonado probably played his best game as a Wildcat. He was excellent in coverage and very effective against the run. He missed two tackles, which has been a theme so far this season. But he did get his first interception at UA to end the first half.

Jaxen Turner had a better game than the grade PFF gave him. They had him very low in coverage but I don’t think it should be that low. Especially since one of the catches he gave up was one where he was all over Greg Dulcich in the red zone. The timing was just a split second in favor of Dulcich. But Turner was very good against the run and did a good game tackling.

STAT LINES

  • Jaxen Turner: 10 tackles, 1 TFL, 1 PBU
  • Gunner Maldonado: 5 tackles, 1 INT

SNAP COUNTS

  • Jaxen Turner: 69
  • Gunner Maldonado: 67

OVERALL

  • Highest: Gunner Maldonado (83.4)
  • Lowest: Jaxen Turner (52.7)

TACKLING

  • Highest: Jaxen Turner (72.5)
  • Lowest: Gunner Maldonado (56.1)

PASS RUSH

  • Highest: Gunner Maldonado (58.3)
  • Lowest: N/A

RUN DEFENSE

  • Highest: Jaxen Turner (80.6)
  • Lowest: Gunner Maldonado (65.7)

COVERAGE

  • Highest: Gunner Maldonado (89.2)
  • Lowest: Jaxen Turner (33.2)