Offense back to being explosive

Sep 17, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers offensive co-coordinator Jeff Scott during the second half against the South Carolina State Bulldogs at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Tigers won 59-0. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Clemson’s goal each game is to run 80 or more plays on offense. Though the Tigers fell well short of that mark at Boston College on Friday night, totaling 60 plays, Clemson co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott is perfectly OK with it.

That’s because less was more for Clemson in the 56-10 win. Thanks to a handful of explosive plays — generally defined as plays of 20-plus yards — Clemson scored quickly, and often.

Only one of Clemson’s seven touchdown drives required more than seven plays. Three of the scoring drives took just four plays, and another took just one play.

“It’s hurting our plays per game,” Clemson co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott said of the big plays on Monday, “but we’ll definitely take the one-play scores over a certain number of plays whenever it goes that way.”

Clemson entered the game against Boston College with zero plays of 50 or more yards, and only one play of 40 or more yards.

By the end of the first quarter, Clemson had three plays of 50-plus yards.

Running back Wayne Gallman kick-started the offense with a 59-yard touchdown run before wide receiver Mike Williams laid out for a 50-yard diving catch on the next possession that put Clemson in position for a 14-0 lead. Then, on the first play of the next drive, tight end Jordan Leggett scored on a 56-yard reception to make the score 21-0 in a flash.

Clemson has become accustomed to breaking off big-gainers over the past few years, and Scott said it was good to get back to that.

“I think, looking back, that’s what this offense has really been known for is explosive plays, and that’s what we want to do,” Scott said. “You don’t want to always have to drive 10 plays and go 85 yards to score.

“It’s nice to get those, and I think that one stretch we had those three series in a row, with the last one with Jordan Leggett on a one-play touchdown, was huge.”

Overall, the Tigers recorded six plays of more than 20 yards, including Deon Cain’s 29-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter and Tavien Feaster’s 45-yard touchdown run in the fourth.

Clemson wasn’t as dynamic on offense as it would have liked through the first five games, but Scott knew it was only a matter of time before the Tigers got back to being their explosive selves.

“We feel like we’ve got all the pieces, it’s just everything matching up,” Scott said. “We had some of those plays early in the year and just didn’t connect, and then Friday night, we did. I think that’s something we’ve seen coming through the way the guys have worked and practiced, and hopefully that will continue.”

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