Ellington wants to be receiving threat


by - Senior Writer -
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CLEMSON – Ask any Clemson fan who follows the Tigers closely, and they can tell you that C.J. SpillerC.J. Spiller
Pro Running Back
#28 5-11, 195
Lake Butler, FL

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was a weapon out of the backfield during his four years at Clemson, with the wheel route his signature receiving play.

Who can forget the wheel route that Spiller ran at Miami (Fla.), with quarterback Kyle ParkerKyle Parker
Quarterback
#11 6-1, 200
Jacksonville, FL

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launching the pass over defenders and Spiller running underneath it for the catch?

Jamie HarperJamie Harper
Running Back
#8 6-0, 235
Jacksonville, FL

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was also a receiving threat out of the backfield, and his diving catch in the end zone at Auburn was one of the offensive highlights of the 2010 season.

Spiller ended his Clemson career with 123 receptions, while Ellington has 45 catches during his three-year career.

In 2012, Andre EllingtonAndre Ellington
RS Sr. Running Back
#23 5-10, 195
Moncks Corner, SC

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wants to be the same kind of threat as Spiller, and has worked hard over the offseason and fall camp to ensure he isn’t just a one-dimensional running back. He has worked so hard, in fact, that he is chasing perfection.

"I actually haven't dropped a ball yet during fall camp," Ellington told reporters following Tuesday’s practice. “Knock on wood. I feel pretty good about. I've worked hard on it."

Ellington said that adding another dimension to his resume is just part of why he is excited about the 2012 season.

“I am excited. I am excited to play another football game as a college player. I don’t let the naysayers get to me. I feel pretty good – I have worked hard on it [receiving] and it is showing. I think Coach [Chad MorrisChad Morris
Offensive Coordinator / QBs
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] is going to dial up some plays where he is going to get the ball in my hands out of the backfield.”

Among the naysayers Ellington spoke of were some of the talking heads on ESPN, who surmised earlier this week that Ellington might struggle this season, opining that the move to a man-blocking scheme from the more familiar zone-blocking scheme would hurt Ellington’s numbers.

Ellington says that’s not the case.

“I don’t see how I would struggle with it,” He said. “I haven’t ever struggled with it before. I just have to make the best of my opportunities. I have a lot of faith in the guys blocking for me that they are going to get the job done.”

He said there are little nuances or changes that have to factor in to the change in blocking, but it’s nothing he can't handle.

“You have to be a smarter running back and set up the blocks better than in the zone,” he said. “For the most part, though, you just have to trust the guys blocking for you. I have a lot of guys blocking for me and I know they will get the job done. Those guys are a lot more confident because they have spent a year in the offense and they are a closer group of guys.”

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