Andre Ellington was battling injuries the whole time he was at Clemson and still had a great junior and senior season.
As far as player development goes, there will always be guys that don't live up to expectations, but what about Vic Beasley, Spencer Shuey, Nuk Hopkins, Stephone Anthony, Dwayne Allen, Andre Branch, Coty Sensabaugh?
Just because a player has success in the NFl doesn't mean Dabo didn't do a good job developing them.
I could be mistaken, but I interpreted that to be sarcasm.
Posted: Aug 2, 2014 5:13 PM
It might just be me, but I was taking the comment by dsgriff to be making fun of the dumpers who constantly attack Dabo instead of an actual attack on Dabo's ability to develop players.
Regardless of what he actually meant, I wholeheartedly agree with you that Dabo has done an excellent job overall of giving players the training, experience, and exposure needed for a future career in the NFL.
Spiller and Watkins may be two of those players that have enough talent to most likely succeed in the vast majority of situations regardless of where they chose to go to school. It's the ones you mentioned like Dwayne Allen, Andre Ellington, and Nuk Hopkins who have outperformed what was most widely expected out of them when they were first choosing which college to attend.
Although it's unclear just how well Beasley will perform once he gets to the NFL, he has clearly performed leaps and bounds above what any of the recruiting services would have suggested when he was coming out of high school. Dabo and his staff did an outstanding job moving him around in his first couple years to find just where he would be most effective.
As far as Anthony goes, he was widely considered to be one of the top LB's in his class when he was coming out of high school. Despite a slow start to his career, he has blossomed into an elite prospect, and he made a very wise decision to come back for his senior year to gain one final year of experience and exposure.
Spencer Shuey is one of those players that wasn't expected to do much, but between his level of heart and determination and the development by Dabo and company, he became an essential part of our defense over the last two years. I don't know if he has the athleticism to ever be a starter in the NFL, but he is a guy who has done more with less up to this point. (I don't mean to knock the guy at all, he clearly a better athlete than the vast majority of people, and he's at least 10 times the athlete that I ever was). He has instincts that can't be taught combined with an understanding of of how to read a play by looking at certain keys that he likely developed through untold hours of film study.
I'll never forget the way our defense improved as soon as he became a starter in the latter half of the season two years ago. There's no way to tell how much of it can be attributed directly to his presence and how much has to do with the other players becoming more comfortable with Venables' system, but it was almost like the entire mentality changed once he became a starter.