Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said defensive end Xavier Thomas looked a lot better on Wednesday, but he is still day-to-day on his return.
“Hopefully, he will be ready, but it is probably going to be see what he says tomorrow. See what Danny says in the morning. But he looked a lot better today,” Swinney said following practice at the Allen Reeves Football Complex in Clemson.
Thomas has been under concussion protocol since he suffered a concussion in practice prior to the Louisville game. He did not make the trip to Louisville. It is the first game he has missed in his Clemson career.
Thomas played in the first six games for the Tigers, starting four of them. He has recorded 17 tackles, including 4.5 tackles for loss and two sacks. He also has 6 quarterback pressures.
DK will play. Swinney also updated the status of cornerback Derion Kendrick. The sophomore suffered a turf toe injury at Louisville and missed a lot of the second half.
“He looks good. He looked good. There is no problem,” Swinney said. “I think he is good to go. He practiced every rep.”
Kendrick has started all seven games for the Tigers. He has 14 tackles, 2 passes broken up and one interception.
Henry has improved a lot. When asked which defensive lineman has improved the most since the start of the season, Swinney says defensive end K.J. Henry has made the biggest strides.
“He has really come a long way,” Swinney said. “We trust him a lot more. His physicality. I am just really proud of him.”
Swinney said he is also proud of Justin Mascoll, who he says has come a long way, too.
However, Swinney says Henry has really come on the most because in camp he felt Thomas, Mascoll and Logan Rudolph separated themselves. But since the start of the season, Henry has made the most strides.
“I’m really proud of him,” Swinney said.
As for the interior, Swinney said Darnell Jefferies is the most improved player.
“Even though he has not had the amount of work, he has come a long way from where he was in the spring,” Swinney said. “He knows what he is doing. He has not gotten as much opportunity, but we trust him and we think he has made huge progress for a young guy.”
Clemson will host Boston College for Homecoming this Saturday. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.
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