LSU’s beleaguered football team took another major blow as the team announced that star wide receiver Kayshon Boutte will miss the remainder of the 2021 season with an ankle injury.
Boutte joins a list that includes Derek Stingley, Andre Anthony, Todd Harris, and John Emery as long-term losses for the Tigers who will face 20th-ranked Florida (4-2, 2-2 SEC) this Saturday in Baton Rouge.
He was been the primary weapon in the LSU offensive attack this season, leading the team with 509 receiving yards and paces both the SEC and FBS with nine TDs in six games. No other wideout in the conference has more than five.
Freshman tight end Jack Bech will certainly see his role expand. Bech is LSU’s second-leading reciever with 22 receptions for 272 yards and a touchdown.
On the outside, Trey Palmer, Malik Nabers, Deion Smith, and Brian Thomas will try to pick up the considerable slack left in Boutte’s absence.
They have combined for 44 catches, 622 yards, and five touchdowns.
Coach Ed Orgeron has high expectations for the group.
“It’s about somebody coming up and making some plays,” Orgeron said. “I think you saw Malik Nabers do a lot of good things. I’m looking for him, Devonta Lee to step up in a bigger role. I think all of those guys have to step up, not just one guy.”
The step won’t be easy against a Florida defense that has allowed only 27 points in its last three games, and limited Kentucky to less than half (20) as many points as the Tigers surrendered on Saturday.
The Gators are currently 28th in the FBS in fewest yards allowed, and they have sacked the quarterback 20 times so far this season. Florida in only giving up 15.5 points per game.