Thanks to holding Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins to his worst QBR of the season, there has been a lot of talk about how the Nebraska football defense is getting better and starting to turn the corner. The problem with that narrative is that it isn't really true. Yes, the team is committing less stupid penalties. Yes, It's recording more sacks and getting more turnovers. But when it comes to real defensive efficiency, when it comes to really stopping an opponent, that isn't really happening yet.

Teams running roughshod over the Nebraska football team

One of the reasons why Ohio State was able to score 36 points and beat the Huskers last Saturday despite the Blackshirts giving Haskins fits is because OSU simply changed up its approach. Instead of trying to throw the ball all over the field, they ran it all over the Cornhuskers. JK Dobbins and Mike Weber combined for 254 yards on 32 carries. That's a 7.9 yards per carry average. That includes 42 and 37 yard runs from each back as well as three rushing touchdowns from Dobbins. It should also be pointed out that had Haskins been a bit sharper on Saturday; this game might have gotten out of hand. Especially in the first half, the Ohio State quarterback had some wide open receivers that he underthrew or overthrew consistently.

One step forward, two steps back for the Huskers

That kind of game wasn't a one-off. Wisconsin's' Jonathan Taylor ran for 221 yards 24 carries (9.1 YPC) and three touchdowns. His backup, Taiwan Deal, had 74 yards on ten carries and a touchdown. It's true that the rushing defense has been able to snuff out some offenses. Minnesota managed just 125 yards on 36 carries (3.5 YPC).

Northwestern was even worse. The Wildcats got just 32 yards on 23 carries. The problem has been that when the Nebraska football team can stop one aspect of an attack, it's rarely a complete shutdown. Minnesota, not exactly known for a great passing attack (67th in the country), managed 349 yards passing. Northwestern absolutely lit up the Blackshirts like a pinball machine.

The Wildcats threw for 455 yards and three touchdowns. That includes 12 catches for 220 yards for Flynn Nagel. That's the same Flynn Nagel who has seven catches for 51 yards in his last two games. In fact, he's got just 15 catches for 122 yards in Northwestern's three games since they played the Nebraska football team. All of this is to say that yes, the Cornhuskers' defense is getting better. It's not there yet. That should worry anyone who has seen what the Illinois Fighting Illini have done so far this year on offense. The bright side is that the Cornhuskers clearly understand what's going to help the team get better is an infusion of talent moving forward, that can get on the field quickly.