The other week, we ran a piece about the numerous bad breaks Florida State head coach Willie Taggart has had to address since he took over a Seminole program already reeling at the end of 2017. It wasn’t meant as any kind of blanket excuse for Taggart’s shortcomings, but whatever you think of him as a coach, it’s hard to deny that plenty Taggart can’t control has gone against him. Well add another item to that already lengthy list of obstacles.
Taggart confirmed the fears of FSU fans when he announced on Monday that junior defensive end Joshua Kaindoh has been lost for the season following an injury against Virginia. The injury occurred during the second quarter of Saturday’s game when Kaindoh had a teammate roll up on his leg. The injury is being described as a lower-body injury.
This injury comes at a defensive position where Florida State is already lacking depth. The Seminoles have been trying to fill the void left by Brian Burns, who was drafted in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Prior to the UVA game, Kaindoh was listed as a co-starter with redshirt-junior edge defender Janarius Robinson.
While Robinson’s significance will increase in Kaindoh’s absence, there’s a real depth concern here, as nobody was listed below those two on the most recent ’Nole depth chart. Due to the poor coverage skills of opposite-edge starter Leonard Warner III, his backup, redshirt-freshman Amari Gainer, probably figured to see more playing time anyway, but Gainer’s role likely increases even more now. FSU could also look to redshirt-frosh Dennis Briggs, Jr., who’s played in every game this year and made six tackles.
Redshirt-freshman Jamarcus Chatman saw time against Boise State, but hasn’t played since, and fellow redshirt-frosh Malcom Lamar hasn’t seen the field this year. Three true freshmen — Quashon Fuller, Derrick McLendon II, and Curtis Fann, Jr. — have yet to play this season.
The aforementioned loss of Burns already left this team searching for more of a pass rush, which resulted in the switch from the 4-3 to the 3-4. Kaindoh’s injury will bring this issue to the forefront even more. Through three games, the Seminoles are tied for 25th in the FBS, averaging three sacks per game. Of course, that doesn’t take pace into play— but it’s certainly not bad.
FSU has taken to releasing its depth chart later in the week, so we’ll see what it says ahead of the Cardinals coming to town for Florida State’s game against Louisville this Saturday.