Penn State freshman WR now listed as starter ahead of Maryland matchup
A Penn State offense that was sloppy this past Saturday in a home loss to Ohio State is searching for a spark. That jolt might be coming in the form of freshman wide receiver KeAndre Lambert-Smith.
Lambert-Smith is listed as a starter heading into this Saturday’s game against Maryland, the true freshman having shown well in limited reps the past two weeks.
Penn State hasn’t necessarily struggled this year moving the ball, but through the season’s first two weeks they’ve certainly been a bit lackluster and lacking explosiveness. The Nittany Lions are seventh in the Big Ten in both total offense and scoring offense.
Couple that with a defense that has struggled due to linebacker Micah Parson opting out of the season and declaring for the NFL Draft and something has to be done to turn a morose offense into one that is again grinning at Happy Valley. Penn State is currently giving up the fourth-most points per game in the conference, allowing 37 points per game.
To offset these defensive struggles, Penn State is going to need to start scoring points and sustaining drives.
In Saturday night’s loss at Ohio State Lambert-Smith had two catches for 18 yards. One week before in his collegiate debut, Lambert-Smith had two catches for 25 yards in a loss at Indiana.
A consensus four-star recruit, Lambert-Smith should be able to bring much-needed play-making ability to Penn State’s offense. With 4.5 speed and a 39-inch vertical, an increase in field time could help Penn State start moving the ball more effectively.
The inclusion of Lambert-Smith could be a good foil for junior wide receiver Jahan Dotson. The team’s leading receiver was a bright spot in Saturday’s loss to Ohio State, with eight receptions for 144 yards and three touchdowns.