Oregon's projected to have one of the nation's best defenses next season with the crown jewel being a stacked secondary that finished second in the country with 20 interceptions last season.
The Ducks return all players from that unit and will add five-star cornerback Dontae Manning in 2020.
In fact, former Oregon Ducks safety Anthony Newman claims that the upcoming secondary can be the best secondary the program has ever seen.
Newman isn't alone in his praise.
ESPN NFL draft analyst and Executive Director of the Reese's Senior Bowl Jim Nagy tweeted Sunday morning that Oregon defensive backs Deommodre Lenoir and Thomas Graham Jr. are among the best pairs in the nation.
Any discussion about top CB tandems in college football must include @oregonfootball #4 Thomas Graham Jr. and #6 Deommodore Lenoir. Both are quick-footed and reactive enough to play nickel. Graham excels at playing the deep ball and highly underrated. 🦆 #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE pic.twitter.com/hzmCpUiZGf
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) July 5, 2020
Side note: With them both being seniors next season, they should expect invites to the Senior Bowl.
Be sure to download and listen for free Sports Uncovered: The uniform craze that revolutionized college football
Additionally, NFL Network draft analyst Ben Fennell agreed, calling the Oregon secondary the nation's best.
Best secondary in CFB! @oregonfootball
Don't forget senior safety Nick Pickett 2yr starter w/ solid cover skills. Brady Breeze another senior w/ lots of experience (Rose Bowl MVP)
Junior nickel Jevon Holland might be most talented of the bunch. And FS McKinley is a rising star! https://t.co/C8xcVj2Md2
— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) July 5, 2020
Nagy's praise caused Graham Jr. to make a simple proclamation: The nation will take notice sooner than later.
He went on to say he would take his secondary over any other one.
I'm taking my Oregon secondary over anybody
— Thomas Graham Jr. (@_TG4__) July 5, 2020
A sentiment echoed by fellow Duck, 2021 four-star cornerback commit Jaylin Davies.
However, nose tackle Jordon Scott had a minor correction to Graham's point.
He has a point, given the returning talent on defense along with two incoming five-star linebackers, the Ducks are projected to have the nation's second-best defense next season according to ESPN's SP+ metric.
Lenoir later gave the Oregon secondary their name a la "The Legion of Boom," in N.I.A. for "NOTHING IN THE AIR."
Oregon DB Group Name N.I.A.
NOTHING IN THE AIR
— BumpMilly (@Dede_lenoir) July 5, 2020
It has a nice ring to it and makes sense to boot.
Of the top ten returning Pac-12 football players ahead of the 2020 college football season, Pro Football Focus has three of them as members of Oregon's secondary: Jevon Holland at No. 2 (the nation's best slot corner per PFF), Mykael Wright at No. 4, and Thomas Graham Jr. at No. 8.
This doesn't even include returning senior Deommodre Lenoir, who forwent the NFL Draft to return to school, Rose Bowl Defensive MVP Brady Breeze, Nick Pickett, and Verone McKinley.
Soon all of college football will know their name.
[Listen to the latest Talkin' Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Olympian Devon Allen].
The Oregon Ducks will roll with their secondary over anyone else originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest