Scott Satterfield announced Monday that sophomore wide receiver Braden Smith will miss the remainder of the 2021 season because of torn knee ligaments. He suffered the injury during Saturday’s 31-23 road win over Florida State.
Smith had made 11 catches for 68 yards and a touchdown before suffering his injury, but his biggest contributions so far this season had come in non-traditional roles for a wide receiver. His 49-yard punt return for a touchdown changed the tide of Louisville’s week two game against Eastern Kentucky, and his 45-yard trick play touchdown pass to Trevion Cooley was one of the biggest highlights of a highlight-filled win over Central Florida in week three.
The only positive here for Louisville is that wide receiver might be the deepest unit on the U of L roster. Jordan Watkins, Josh Johnson and Tyler Harrell all stepping up so significantly in the win over Florida State certainly provides a bit more cushion for this blow than there would have been just a couple of weeks ago.
U of L’s game notes for the Wake Forest game have Johnson listed as the receiver stepping into Smith’s starting role for this weekend’s game
Smith becomes the second player in the last four days who has been ruled out for the season, joining linebacker Monty Montgomery, who suffered a torn ACL in the win over UCF.
Best wishes to both players on a full and speedy recovery.