Wednesday practice news and notes

by - Senior Writer -
Alexander has been working a lot at second team punt return.
Alexander has been working a lot at second team punt return.

CLEMSON – Bright and sunny skies inside of Death Valley were the order of the day Wednesday as the Clemson football ran through one of its final practices of the spring inside the stadium.

The Clemson media contingent was allowed to watch the first 30 minutes or so of the practice, and there are some news and notes we would like to pass along.

We’ll start with freshman quarterback Deshaun WatsonDeshaun Watson
Fr. Quarterback
#4 6-3, 190
Gainesville, GA

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...the Gainesville product was all smiles during the practice session despite the sling he had on his right and throwing arm and shoulder. We talked to Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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before the practice, and he told us that Watson should be ready to resume workouts when the team returns May 15th.

Also on the injury front, Swinney said that offensive lineman Eric Mac LainEric Mac Lain
RS Jr. Offensive Line
#78 6-3, 260
Hope Mills, NC

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– who is battling turf toe – won’t have to undergo surgery. He said that Mac Lain just needs rest and rehab and should be completely healthy for fall camp.

Yellow jerseys

Tight end Jordan LeggettJordan Leggett
So. Tight End
#16 6-6, 235
Navarre, FL

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and left tackle Isaiah BattleIsaiah Battle
Jr. Offensive Tackle
#79 6-6, 280
Brooklyn, NY

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were both in yellow jerseys and walking the stadium steps instead of practicing.

Charone PeakeCharone Peake
RS Jr. Wide Receiver
#19 6-3, 200
Moore, SC

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Wide receiver Charone Peake – recovering from an ACL tear – was dressed out in a jersey and pads for the practice, and I was told he will be running pass routes today.

MacKensie AlexanderMacKensie Alexander
RS Fr. Defensive Back
#2 5-11, 185
Immokalee, FL

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Alexander has been working a lot at second team punt return behind wide receiver Adam HumphriesAdam Humphries
Sr. Wide Receiver
#13 5-11, 190
Spartanburg, SC

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. Alexander has the “quicks” that the coaches like, and I’ve heard that he has shown some pretty good hands in the process. It will be interesting to see if the coaches use him that way in the fall.

D.J. GreenleeD.J. Greenlee
RS Fr. Linebacker
#43 6-2, 210
Clemson, SC

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I saw Greenlee working against some of the defensive linemen, and he was holding his own. Turns out he has bulked up to 235 pounds, and could be a factor at tight end. Hopefully we can ask Swinney and offensive coordinator Chad MorrisChad Morris
Offensive Coordinator / QBs
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and see what they say.

B.J. GoodsonB.J. Goodson
RS Jr. Linebacker
#44 6-0, 240
Lamar, SC

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I asked one observer – someone who has been at all of the practices – if any of the defensive players have caught their eye, and he mentioned linebacker B.J. Goodson. He said that Goodson has been a physical presence in camp, and has been responsible for several big collisions in camp.

Dabo Swinney notes

On the importance of the spring game

“Some people don’t like spring games. I actually enjoy it because it’s good to see guys have totally different roles and see how they respond. I’m looking forward to it. I hope we have a huge crowd. I would love to see at least this whole lower bowl filled up. We’re going to have a lot of recruits here. It’s going to be a beautiful day. It creates the environment and atmosphere and gives us another tool for evaluation. It helps us.”

Deshaun Watson update

“His injury – he’ll be out for about two-and-a-half or three weeks. The next two weeks are what we call discretionary time, so there’s not much going on. They’ve got finals, then they go home for a week and then they come back. By then, he’ll be rocking and rolling. It’s not like he’s out of the competition. He’ll pick right back up and go through summer skills and drills. This thing is far from over.”

“Live” quarterbacks

“We’ll go live during the fall for at least two scrimmages and then during a couple of practices we’ll pick out two or three periods where we’ll let them go live. There’s no way we’re going to go into Athens with these guys not having been hit. Not with what we do. That’s crazy.”

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