By Ashley Denny.
CLEMSON, SC- Offensive Coordinator Chad Morris wasn’t as pleased with what he saw from his offense at Saturday’s scrimmage, as he has been in recent days.
“We’ve had some really good offensive practices over the past few days,” Morris said. “And I think they came out here today pretty full of themselves, not nearly what I wanted or what Coach Swinney wanted. I think we were pretty soft early on and were just out of rhythm at times. This may be because today is the first scrimmage, but I just don’t think some of our guys are cutting it right now, or at least not what I want to see, they just better step it up.”
What concerned Morris the most during Saturday’s scrimmage were the mental errors made by veteran players.
“Well we’re making some mental mistakes right now,” Morris said. “You don’t expect these small mental mistakes from the older guys, maybe the younger guys but we’re turning the ball over in the red zone and we just can’t have that. We’re still getting into the flow of things, but I was just expecting us to be a little bit crisper in some areas that we weren’t.”
Morris did say that the offense improved greatly as the scrimmage progressed and that he saw several guys make good plays, but he definitely believed that they were outplayed by the defense throughout the first half of play.
“We did some good things today,” Morris said. “Early on, for whatever reason we made some mental mistakes that cost us some yards, there were missed assignments, guys jumping off sides and you just can’t have those things. We’re coming off a great week of practice and playing physical, and today we just didn’t play as physical as I was expecting us to but it’s alright we’re going to get back to work Monday.”
One player Morris couldn’t praise enough after Saturday’s scrimmage was quarterback Tajh Boyd who completed 10 out of his 12 passes for 168 yards and a touchdown with no turnovers.
“Tajh is not the same person he was in the spring,” Morris said. “He’s more familiar with the offense and you expect that. Everybody’s acting all surprised that Tajh is having a great camp but this is what we expect out of him, this is what he should be doing. It’s a big deal to be the quarterback at Clemson, it takes effort and you have to put time into it and he did that this summer. Where he’s at right now is a gauging point but he has to continue to get better.”
As for the competition at left tackle, Morris believes that the Tigers are close to finding their starter.
“Philip Price is doing very well,” Morris said. “These guys behind him are really going to have to keep pushing in order to get a hold of him because he really wants it.”
Two offensive freshmen that have really stood out to Morris this week are two that I’m sure everyone expected to impress the coaches, speedsters Sammy Watkins and Mike Bellamy.
“Sammy Watkins has had an unbelievable week,” Morris said. “I think Bellamy has had a really good week too. I think Sammy is really pushing to be a part of that first group, he’s fixing to push some more and there are some veteran guys that need to climb that ladder in a hurry because he’ll catch up to them quickly.”
With only one full week left of fall camp, Morris hopes that his offense will continue to play faster and more physically.
“This next week is our last full week of camp,” Morris said. “And it’s has to be the toughest, if we going to have hotter weather, let’s get hotter weather, whatever we have to do, it’s has to be tough, I thought our tempo was okay today, we got a little tired from the heat and it slowed us down but we had two drives of 70 plus yards in three plays or less which is great and we were able to move the football down the field running the ball, but we have to be more physical in order for this offense to work.”