Following the loss of Deshaun Watson, it was logical that Clemson's offensive pace would slow. Last year, the Tigers ran over 80 plays per game and were one of the faster tempo teams in the country. This year, the Tigers have been playing it a lot closer to the vest and allowing their elite-level stop unit to win games. That philosophy eventually backfired as the offense ran only 57 plays and produced only 317 yards in their Week 7 loss to Syracuse. Last week, the offense picked up the tempo some (78 plays, 428 yards) in a 24-10 win over Georgia Tech. According to the coaching staff, with quarterback Kelly Bryant fully acclimated, the offense is ready to return to its brand of
. Bettors should perhaps be a little bit wary of such a claim. Despite the loss to Syracuse, Clemson is still in position to reach the playoffs should they win out. Playing fast, as we know, comes with risks (turnovers, more stress on the defense), especially when you haven't done much of it. Clemson is currently a -7 road favorite vs. NC State for Saturday.
“The bottom line is, studying it for two weeks, we really wanted to get back to playing fast and being who we are,” offensive co-coordinator Jeff Scott said. “Obviously, it showed (Saturday night).”
“Rhythm has a lot to do with it,” offensive co-coordinator Tony Elliott said. “When you can play fast, have misdirection and throw the ball down the field and keep that defense running sideline-to-sideline, you’re better off.