Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said Kelly Bryant “did okay” in Saturday’s win over Boston College.
“Of the four games, I would probably put this one fourth,” Swinney said Sunday during his weekly teleconference with the media. “It is not that he did terrible, but there was just a style of play where they really just made a decision that ‘if you can run the ball and beat us, then that is what you are going to have to do.’”
That’s what the Tigers (4-0, 2-0 ACC) did. Clemson rushed for 342 yards on the Eagles, including 106 yards and two touchdowns from Bryant, who had 22 carries.
However, BC would not let the Tigers get anything downfield in the passing game. Bryant completed 17-of-26 passes for just 140 yards. He did not throw a touchdown pass and was picked off twice.
“I think he got a little frustrated early just because of some of the looks we were getting and there were a couple of times he held the ball a little too long,” Swinney said. “He did not pull the trigger a couple of times when I thought he could have.”
But Swinney was proud of the way Bryant was able to play through it and settled into the game.
“He made some really nice plays in the passing game and obviously made some huge plays in the rush game as well – over 100 yards rushing,” Swinney said. “It was just that type of game. You have to remember with Kelly now … he has played just four games.
“He is so far from a finished product. There are some things on tape that we get a chance to coach him on and he is such as contingence player that he is going to learn and he is going to get better from some of the things we need to teach him off the tape.”
Could A.J. Terrell start at Virginia Tech. Freshman A.J. Terrell could get the start for Clemson at cornerback next Saturday when the Tigers travel to Blacksburg, Va., to face No. 12 Virginia Tech at Lane Stadium.
Swinney said sophomore Trayvon Mullen is in the concussion protocol while Mark Fields is also injured and is questionable for next week’s game with a glut injury.
“That will be the next option there. We have a lot of confidence in A.J.,” Swinney said. “He has gotten better and better. He got some good experience. He is going to be a great player. He has good instincts. We will see how it all plays out.”
Swinney went onto to say K’Von Wallace is another player who could start at corner without any problem at all.
“We are going to be alright,” Swinney said.
After coming in for Mullen in the fourth quarter on Saturday, Terrell recorded two tackles and broke up two passes.
Other injuries. Swinney said offensive guard Maverick Morris was banged up, but he will be okay.
Linebacker Dorian O’Daniel has a quad injury, but he expects him to play against Virginia Tech. Tight end D.J. Greenlee (knee) could also be back by Saturday. Swinney said he is doing well and they will see how he does in practice and in the days that follow.
Game MVP. Swinney announced running back Travis Etienne and the entire offensive line earned offensive player of the week honors, while Christian Wilkins and Kendall Joseph were named defensive players of the game by the coaching staff.
Ray-Ray McCloud, who had a 56-yard punt return, was named the special teams player of the week.
Swinney said the offensive line, which led the Tigers to 342 rushing yards, played their best game as a group this season and he did not believe any of them missed their assignments or were charged with a negative grade.