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Louisville Football: 2018 Cardinals Preview and Prediction

Jaylen Smith, Louisville Football

Jaylen Smith, Louisville Football

While Louisville must cope without Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson leading the offense, the Cardinals' questions go beyond the quarterback position. Bobby Petrino has even more questions on defense, which will be under the direction of a new coordinator. While Jackson will certainly be a tough act to follow, the new quarterback has a veteran offensive line to protect him and a talented group of receivers to throw to. The same can't be said for the defense, which returns just two starters. Petrino has his work cut out for him as the Cardinals will try and maintain their place in the ACC Atlantic Division pecking order.

Previewing Louisville Football's Offense for 2018

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Louisville Football/ACC Magazine

Some NFL teams weren't certain Lamar Jackson's best position is quarterback, but don't tell that to Bobby Petrino. He must replace his team's best runner and passer from the last two seasons, a guy the Cardinals could count on for more than 400 yards and three touchdowns per game.

Petrino will do that by returning to his pass-first roots with a quarterback who is more thrower than runner - Jawon Pass, who completed nearly 70 percent of his throws in a small sample size (33 attempts) last season. At 6'4" and 231 pounds with a powerful arm, Pass is more Brian Brohm than Jackson.