Walker says offensive line has to play better
|Monday, November 21, 2011 9:25 PM- -|
CLEMSON – Offensive coordinator Chad Morris said early Monday that his offense needed someone to step in and make a play. To provide a spark.
The first-team offense was held without a touchdown in Saturday’s loss to N.C. State and turned the ball over four times, and Walker said the offensive line has to play better in order for a playmaker to make a play.
“We didn’t play well enough Saturday to allow plays to be made,” Walker said Monday in the WestZone. “To have a playmaker be valuable, you’ve got to let the quarterback throw the ball to him. That’s where it starts. As an offensive lineman, we’ve to get that right this week. Saturday was not how I like us to look. We didn’t play anywhere near how we’re capable of playing.”
The offense has struggled recently in short yardage situations, and even has had red zone issues of late. Walker says all 11 guys have to be in synch for the offense to work.
“It’s one guy, here and there,” he said. “We had a few problems with it last year. There’s 10 guys doing their job and one guy not doing their job. Or there’s three guys not doing their job. It’s getting everyone to do their job. It’s not toughness, it’s not any of that. It is playing together.
“We haven’t been doing that the last couple games. We skated by Wake Forest but we haven’t been playing together. We have to have all 11 guys on the field doing their job. Whether that’s me, Antoine [McClain], Dwayne [Allen] or whoever it may be, we have to play together, play for each other.”
The offensive line was already without starting left tackle
Phillip PricePhillip Price
RS Sr. Offensive Tackle
#79 6-5, 315
View Full Profile , prompting the coaching staff to move starting left guard Brandon ThomasBrandon Thomas
RS So. Offensive Line
#63 6-3, 300
View Full Profile to left tackle and bring in David SmithDavid Smith
RS Sr. Offensive Tackle
#73 6-5, 310
View Full Profile to the guard spot. Then Thomas went out with a leg injury, and Smith was forced to move to left tackle, a position he was
“He’s never played left tackle his career,” Walker said. “To put him out there in that environment and say hold people off, against good pass rushers is really unfair, but at the same time someone has to do it. I think we put him in a situation where guys had to step up and do things they hadn’t done before. It’s tough on an offensive line but we have to step up and do the things we have to do.”
It’s still unknown if Price – who was still limping noticeably late last week – will be able to go against South Carolina’s talented defensive line this week, but Walker likes Clemson’s chances against the Gamecocks.
“They offer the same kind of defense we played most of the season, when we played Auburn, Virginia Tech, the big defensive ends we’re used to seeing,” Walker said. “I think we’ve got a huge opportunity to be successful with that.”