Kelly one of many pushing for playing time


by - Senior Writer -
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CLEMSON – Chad MorrisChad Morris
Offensive Coordinator / QBs
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compares this week of fall practice to Saturday at the Masters.

In other words, everything is on the line for those players competing for a starting spot or a key reserve role.

The Tigers ran through a late afternoon practice Tuesday afternoon, and with only six days of practice remaining before the team begins to concentrate on Auburn, Morris said now is the time for players to show that the coaches can trust them in game situations.

“It’s like Saturday at the Masters,” Morris said after Tuesday’s practice. “That is the term I use with them, quarterbacks and all. This is a big week for a lot of these guys. There is a lot of pressure. Some of them are stepping up and some are letting the pressure get to them. It is a big week, and you will see a lot of movement and a lot of shaking around going on.

Morris said he has been pleased with improvement he has seen thus far.

“We are getting there, but there is still a long way to go,” he said. “We are challenging these guys. The effort is good. We have to keep putting them in adverse conditions. We are down to the dog days of fall camp. It is our job as coaches to keep pushing and grinding and pushing them through it. Nobody should feel at ease –nobody. At any position. Our job is to make sure their life right now is a little uneasy. “

Morris said that the battle to be the second-string quarterback behind starter Tajh BoydTajh Boyd
RS Jr. Quarterback
#10 6-1, 225
Hampton, VA

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is a three-way battle, and that there is no separation.

“No. There is no separation,” he said. “It is pretty tight-knit right now. It is a true three-man race right now without a doubt. If anything, I can say that Chad KellyChad Kelly
Fr. Quarterback
#11 6-3, 210
Buffalo, NY

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- he is really pushing some guys.”

Morris on first scrimmage

“Saturday, we had a good first scrimmage. About what we expected out of a first scrimmage. We had some good things and some bad things. We had too many penalties, which was very uncharacteristic of us for an up-front bunch. Those are things we have to correct. It was a good scrimmage, a good start. It was about like people coming to your birthday party and bringing you presents, and you open them up and some of them you like and some of them you don’t like. It is our job to keep pushing them and straining them – they need to be strained. “

On Wednesday being a situational scrimmage

“Situation scrimmage, and I hope it is really hot and the wind not blowing. We need that right now. Any short-yardage and goal line situation is big. It doesn’t matter what practice. That is huge. That is an area we have focused on from last year that we have to improve on to be the championship-caliber football team that we want to be. Any time we get a chance to practice that, that is big for us. There are things we have to keep working on and improving. We have to get them ready for that day 17 or 18 days from now. “

On camp not being a happy place for some players

“Everybody [is competing for their position]. The water boy. Everybody's job right now is a little uneasy and it needs to be. It's not happiness camp. Some of these guys get in their mindset that it could be happiness camp and it's not that. We're coming out here and we're pushing these guys and driving these guys and straining them. There are a lot of guys that are being jockeyed around- fired and rehired and the whole bit. It's just the way you do it right now. They are giving effort, but we've got to keep pushing.”

On Jay Jay McCulloughJay Jay McCullough
Fr. Tight End
#89 6-4, 235
Fort Mill, SC

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“He is out there in his shorts. He's got to go through five days of shorts and helmet to get himself ready before he can hit. Is he in shape? Not the type of shape that we need him to be in, but he showed up alright. He is so far behind that it's kind of hard to tell right now, but we are glad he's here.”

On Martavis BryantMartavis Bryant
So. Wide Receiver
#1 6-5, 205
Calhoun Falls, SC

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“He is continuing to work. He is continuing to strive. He is learning on the run. I would say that Martavis is a guy that is continuing to catch the attention of a lot of people in camp. I've been pleased with where he is.”

On the performance of Brandon ThomasBrandon Thomas
RS Jr. Offensive Line
#63 6-3, 300
Spartanburg, SC

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and the O-Line

“It's kind of whatever day it is. It's like that with all of them. It looks really good one day and then it doesn't. It's not just him. It's all of them up front. There is a whole group of them up front that we have to continue to stress and strain and keep pushing.”

On Dalton FreemanDalton Freeman
RS Sr. Offensive Line
#55 6-5, 285
Pelion, SC

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“Not much right tackle at all. He has been back at his center position and trying to slowly get more involved into the practice. He still hasn't gotten to where he is taking most of the snaps yet.”

On Ryan NortonRyan Norton
RS Fr. Offensive Line
#58 6-3, 265
Mauldin, SC

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“He's been working some at guard. It's the position that we thought in the spring that he would be able to push somebody at left guard or right guard. He is a guy that is getting some reps at left guard.”

On the tight end position

“I think Stanton SeckingerStanton Seckinger
RS So. Wide Receiver
#81 6-5, 200
Isle of Palms, SC

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has his moments. He is a young kid that is having his moments. He is learning the game, learning the role, and learning what we expect of him. He is going to be a really good player for us. He is just young. We have to get him in that position and ready to play.”

Zac BrooksZac Brooks
Fr. Running Back
#24 6-2, 180
Jonesboro, AR

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“Zac made it back yesterday. He was in full pads yesterday. It will be interesting to see him in the scrimmage tomorrow morning. Tomorrow will be a big day for these guys. It will be a big challenging day to see how we respond and get everything set and ready. After this week, you would like to have pretty much everything set and ready as you go into your final two weeks.”

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