Bama defenders want to make Lawrence uncomfortable and Tigers one-dimensional
|Saturday, January 5, 2019, 9:06 PM- -|
SAN JOSE, CA – Alabama linebacker Dylan Moses didn’t mince words Saturday when he was asked about quarterback Trevor Lawrence and the Clemson offense. If the Crimson Tide want to win, they’ll make Lawrence uncomfortable and make the Tigers one-dimensional.
Alabama and Clemson meet Monday night in the College Football Playoff National Championship, and all eyes will be on the Tigers’ talented freshman quarterback. Especially the eyes of the Alabama defense, who want to make sure they make Lawrence uncomfortable.
“We're going to have to make him uncomfortable. With him being a freshman, that's a major thing because a lot of people can't handle pressure like that,” Moses said. “But I'm not going to go into the game expecting that. He's going to be, like, edgy or whatnot, kind of shaken up because it's a big game. I'm pretty sure he played in a lot of big games this season.
“We're going to have to take him out of his zone.”
Moses said the Alabama defense has to make Clemson one-dimensional.
“As far as him as a player, I feel like he's a great player. Just facing him, it's going to be one of those things where we're going to have to make Clemson one-dimensional, take one of their best games away from them, run or pass,” Moses said. “Going against (Travis) Etienne, we're going to have to be on our toes, make sure that we stay disciplined, tackle, wrap-up, no arm tackles. It's going to be a hard-fought, physical game. Just got to execute.”
Defensive lineman Quinnen Williams agreed.
“Make it one-dimensional. I feel like making them one-dimensional is going to be huge,” Williams said. “They can run the ball. They have a great running back in Travis and they got a great quarterback in Trevor.
“Making them one-dimensional is going to be huge. Making them put the ball in Trevor's hands and making him make the throws. But just making them one-dimensional. They have a balanced offense and a great balanced offensive line who can pass and run block very well. The big thing for us is going to be stopping the run first.”
Moses said Lawrence is dangerous both as a passer and a runner.
“First we just want to look at the fact that he can throw the ball. We want to focus on that aspect. Whenever we look at his running ability, you know we don't want to take away from the fact that he can't run, you know what I'm saying,” Moses said. “He's a great passer, but at the same time, we want to be able to get coached for his ability to run.
"He brings a lot as far as his passing game. He has a really great arm on him. He can be mobile, but at the same time, we're more focused on his arm. Like I said, he's very accurate, too. If we don't handle our assignments, we don't execute, he can damage us. Like I said, just going into this game, I feel like in order to take him off, we have to make him uncomfortable, put a lot of pressure on him, execute the plays that are called.”
Defensive coordinator Tosh Lupoi was asked to compare former quarterback Kelly Bryant and Lawrence.
“Well, they're different players. Bryant was a great player and Trevor is a great player. Clemson is a great team where you can't focus and hone in on one individual and try to stop somebody. If you do that you're going to get hurt in other ways,” Lupoi said. “They've got a great tailback in No. 9, they distribute the ball really well from 8, 5, 13, No. 3, No. 10, do a lot of different things with those young men. Got some great players at the tight end position, at No. 80 and 44 and of course the other tailbacks, 26, 28 and a veteran offensive line. If you hone in and try to target one individual then the balls gonna get distributed in different ways and it's going to hurt you. You can't just absolutely manipulate your system to do that.
“Trevor is a great player who can vertically stretch the field, he's got a strong, live arm, he can distribute the ball well, he has multiple targets he likes to go to. He's advanced for a true freshman. We're excited about the challenge. Clemson is here and Trevor is here for a reason. They've done a great job and we're just excited for the challenge come Monday evening.”