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Freshmen defensive ends picking up things fast

There has been a lot of talk about the freshman offensive players so far in Clemson’s camp, but there are a couple of players on the defensive side making some noise we well.

Defensive ends Justin Foster and Jordan Williams have come in and have already impressed the coaches and their new teammates. Junior defensive end Austin Bryant says both young players have come into camp ready to perform, good things considering the Tigers are down a man at the position with the loss of Richard Yeargin (neck) due to a car accident earlier this summer in Greenville.

“All of us have to stay healthy, the ones that are playing right now,” Bryant said. “We really can’t afford an injury. Richard Yeargin’s loss was really big. He was a big contributor for us in our room. Losing him, we not only lost him on the field, but we lost him off the field and in the meeting room and stuff as an older guy.

“Now, it has kind of been up to me and Cle (Ferrell) to bring the younger guys along as well as Chris Register being a veteran guy. We are just teaching them as much as we can and helping them as much as we can.”

Bryant said both Foster and Williams have looked good in camp thus far. He says Williams is physically gifted and reported to camp big (287 pounds), while Foster is picking up things fast.

“He is a smart kid and is picking up the plays fast, probably faster than I did my freshman year,” Bryant said. “That is good to see him pick up the plays so quickly. He has been working so hard and so diligently. We are so proud of that guy.”

Though it is still early in camp, Bryant also likes what he has seen from redshirt freshman Xavier Kelly.

“He is getting a lot of reps and he is a lot more mature now,” the junior said about Kelly. “He has learned the playbook. He is still working every day, but as long as he is going up, that is all that we can ask.

“I think by the time camp is over he will have made a lot of progress.”

 

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