Scrimmage Insider: Defense plays mistake-free football, freshman QB is "electric"
|Saturday, August 14, 2021, 7:26 PM- -|
CLEMSON – The defense won the day over the offense in the first scrimmage of August camp.
The Tigers scrimmaged for over two hours inside the Poe Indoor Facility after area storms forced the scrimmage to move inside instead of in Death Valley. The scrimmage was also delayed because head coach Dabo Swinney went to Tallahassee for the funeral of former FSU head coach Bobby Bowden.
With plenty of former players (reunion) on hand to watch the proceedings, the scrimmage went in favor of a mistake-free defense.
*Swinney said the first full live day is the first of two scrimmages (another next Thursday). There was good and bad. Young players made plays defensively. Defense looked like he hoped it would look, very clean. And there were no defensive penalties. Defense played with a lot of discipline and no drop-off. Defense had two fourth-down stops and a turnover.
*Did some good things offensively, but way too many penalties (maybe as many as 10). Penalties in the red zone. Holding and false starts. Swinney says they had some penalties that will get you beat. Had some guys out today so it was good to see some guys step up.
*Swinney says there's a lot to learn from this tape. This was a preseason game for his team. Team has a lot to learn and lot to get better, because three weeks from right now won’t be a preseason game. Sunday will be meetings and they will study the tape. Camp Monday and Tuesday, start school Wednesday, and another scrimmage Thursday.
*All three centers are getting reps. They are also making sure they have flexibility and are cross-training some guys.
*Swinney said the D-line looked really good and he was “super impressed” with what he saw. He said there was no drop-off once the starters came out. They created pressure and had some TFLs and some sacks. Tré Williams was awesome today. Ruke Orhorhoro and Darnell Jefferies had good days as well.
*Swinney said freshman QB Will Taylor is “electric” and covers up problems because he is so dynamic. He creates a different dimension. Freshman walk-on QB Billy Wiles was “solid” today. Swinney said they are evaluating these guys not on stats but where are from a fundamental and functional standpoint. Hunter Helms looks like he has been around for a long time and knows the system. Taisun Phommachanh (coming back from a torn Achilles in the spring) obviously didn’t scrimmage. But he reiterates that Helms had a really good day. Helms is more confident this camp.
*He says Xavier Thomas looks great and he thinks Thomas will have a great year.
*Freshman safety Andrew Mukuba is a guy that is flashing all the time and does something that makes the coaches take notice.
*Wide receiver Joseph Ngata couldn’t go today.
*Tight end Jaelyn Lay made a couple of plays in the passing game today.
*On attending Bowden’s memorial service, he said it was a great day and a celebration of a life well lived. They talked about the gospel. It was moving and inspirational.
*All the running backs got snaps with the 1s, except for Phil Mafah who took most of his snaps with the 2s. He said there weren’t always the matchups you want because both sides are trying to work on things. They didn’t run the ball as much as they do in scrimmages typically. They wanted to see some protections and challenge DJ Uiagalelei.
*He said they wanted to see the command that DJ had of the offense. They wanted him to manage the offense and stay within the system. Swinney says he was solid, didn’t turn it over, a few throws he probably wants back. There were some fundamentals he was careless with. He says he is really locked in.