The Louisville Cardinal

Football position breakdown: Safety

By Conner Farrell–

Our final stop in TLC’s position breakdowns, we take a look at the safeties for this upcoming season.

Much like the cornerback position covered last week the other part of the defensive backfield is led by experience.

While U of L’s safeties have been notorious for their ball-hawking skills the last couple seasons, the starters this season are not afraid to lower the boom every once and a while.

Expected starters: Chucky Williams, Zykiesis Cannon

Senior Chucky Williams is the quarterback of the defense. A leader in the secondary, Williams has started every game that he has been healthy for in last two seasons.

Williams finished last season with 74 tackles, three interceptions and ten tackles for loss. He can fill any role on the defensive side of the ball.

Williams’ ability to be a Swiss army knife was on full display last season when the team traveled to Clemson, where he registered eight tackles, had an interception and recovered a pair of fumbles.

Senior Zykiesis Cannon has developed into a polished player in the defensive backfield for the Cards. A full time starter for the first time in his U of L career last season, Cannon showed the makings of what’s to come this season.

Cannon finished the regular season with 36 tackles, four tackles for loss, and one interception. At one point in the past season, Cannon had five straight games with five tackles or more.

With a safety duo of Williams and Cannon the Cardinal secondary is surely on the right path to living up to their own hype of being “The Tax Boys”  this upcoming season.

Key Backups 

Junior Dee Smith will provide added insurance to an already crowded U of L defensive backfield.

Smith is an aggressive player who brings the hard hits at any opportunity in the course of a game.

The Junior recorded a career high 42 tackles this past season and made a couple of starters including the season opener.

It will be interesting to see what kind of role Smith will play this season and to see if there’s room on the secondary carousel that the defensive side of the ball has. Whether as a special teams or as a rotational player, Smith will definitely find time on the field.

You can follow Conner Farrell on Twitter @ConnerFarrell9.

File photo / The Louisville Cardinal