Though Trevor Lawrence is just a sophomore, he has already mastered Clemson’s offense. And though that sounds like a good thing for the defending national champions, it can also be a hindrance.
Because Lawrence knows the offense so well, he attempted to do too much during the first few weeks of spring practice, which quarterbacks coach Brandon Streeter, along with co-offensive coordinator Tony Elliott, wasn’t happy about.
“I had this before where guys that have mastered the offense and have learned the offense and really understand it, try to do too much,” Streeter said. “He tried to do too much that first part of the spring. He tried to look at too many things.”
And the result was he wasn’t the same Trevor Lawrence they saw lead them to the national championship just a couple of months before.
“My thing for him is to continue to be who you are and don’t change. Keep it simple,” Streeter said. “He was still doing some really good stuff, but that was something he really needed to improve on. Let’s continue to keep it simple and trust the system. He did that in the second half of spring and did a great job.”
When Lawrence came back from spring break, Clemson’s quarterbacks’ coach could see they got through to him. He was trusting the system more and making plays.
“For Trevor, the biggest thing is leadership and then, going forward, don’t try to do too much,” Elliott said. “Here is a guy that came in and really grasped the system right out of the gate. He had a lot of success and a lot of times with a young man like that, they can see too much, so you want to make sure he is not trying to see too much and is not trying to do too much.
“You want him to really master the system so he can teach it to other people. That is when you really have a grasp of it.”
Streeter is interested to see how Lawrence continues to handle all the hype and scrutiny that comes with being the starting quarterback of the defending national champions. He has already officially been dubbed by the media as the favorite for ACC Player of the Year honors, while many of those same people consider him to be a favorite to win the Heisman Trophy and lead the Tigers’ back to the College Football Playoff.
“He is coming into the 2019 system in a totally different light,” Streeter said. “Last year, people knew about him because of his high recruitment and his high profile and status in the recruiting realm, but nobody saw him play at the collegiate level. Then he was not the starter. Then he proved himself as the season went on and now it is a situation where the expectations are so high.”