25 most important Clemson Tigers of 2020: No. 22

25 most important Clemson Tigers of 2020: No. 22

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25 most important Clemson Tigers of 2020: No. 22

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How do you rank the 25 most important players on a squad’s roster?

It is not easy. However, I rank them based on their past performance, experience and who is behind them on the depth chart, as well as their level of talent.

Here is my ranking of the 25 most important players on Clemson’s 2020 football roster. Here is No. 22 on the list.

No. 22: Lannden Zanders

Class: Sophomore

Position: Safety

Height: 6-1

Weight: 195

Bio: Zanders saw the most action of the young safeties in 2019, tallying 21 tackles (2.5 for loss), 2.0 sacks and a pass breakup in 112 snaps on defense. He played in 14 of the 15 games last season. The native of Shelby, N.C., played both safety and receiver when he was at Crest High School. As a senior in 2018, Zanders earned first-team all-conference honors after notching 51 tackles and five interceptions, returning two of them for touchdowns, while also recording 545 receiving yards and eight receiving touchdowns.

Why No. 22: Zanders will likely be a starter opposite fellow safety Nolan Turner when the season begins. Though it is not much experience, Zanders did play in some big games and more than any of the young safeties, including a few times in key situations. Clemson will need that experience, especially early in the year. There will be some growing pains for sure, but Zanders athletic ability will be able to overcome most of the mistakes that are likely to happen with a young player.

They said it: “Lannden, I love his instincts and his ball skills, man. You see it when he gets in – he just flashes. He flies around, great ball skills, and really understands the game of football and works at it, man. I mean he works hard.” –Clemson safeties coach Mickey Conn

25 most important Clemson Tigers of 2020:

No. 25: D.J. Uiagalelei

No. 24: Bryan Bresee

No. 23: Will Putnam

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