Swinney ‘hopeful’ Rodgers will play against A&M

Swinney ‘hopeful’ Rodgers will play against A&M


Swinney ‘hopeful’ Rodgers will play against A&M


Clemson wide receiver Amari Rodgers might be available for No. 1 Clemson when it hosts 12th-ranked Texas A&M this Saturday at Death Valley.

Head coach Dabo Swinney said they are “hopeful” the junior will be ready to play against the Aggies.

“Amari has looked good, so I am hopeful,” Swinney said after Wednesday’s practice.

Rodgers got back to full speed during practice prior to the Georgia Tech game, five months after he tore his ACL during spring practice. Swinney said Rodgers work ethic played a big role on why he has been able to return after such a serious knee injury.

“He has just grinded, Swinney said. “He has surprised all of us. He is really just unbelievably motivated, driven and he has just put the work in. And then again, I guess, it is his DNA. His body. Everybody responds differently.”

Rodgers is not the first Tiger to come back so quickly from a torn ACL. After tearing their ACLs in the 2013 spring game, former quarterback Chad Kelly and former tight end Sam Cooper were back and ready before the Tigers kicked off the season against Georgia.

Former quarterback Deshaun Watson tore his ACL at Georgia Tech in November and had surgery in December of 2014. Watson was cleared to practice before the Tigers began summer workouts in May.

Last week, Rodgers was warming up with his teammates before their game against Georgia Tech.

“He has worked hard, and his body has responded. That is all I can say. He has done a great job. He looks good,” Swinney said.

Rodgers was expected to be the Tigers’ starting slot receiver until his injury. He finished last season second on the team in receptions (55) and third in yards (575). He caught four touchdowns and also returned a punt for a touchdown against Boston College.

Clemson and Texas A&M are scheduled to kick off at 3:30 p.m., and the game will be televised on ABC.

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