Clemson held its second scrimmage of the spring Friday at Death Valley and head coach Dabo Swinney was pleased with his running game but was not happy with the mentality of his defense or the many mistakes he saw on both sides of the ball.
“There were a lot of great things today,” he said after the scrimmage. “I love how we ran the football. I was super impressed with our running backs. There were a lot of big plays.”
On the flip side, Swinney did not think the defense’s mindset was where it needed to be as far as stopping the run. However, he said the defense kind of flipped the script and created some turnovers in the red zone, as well as creating a safety coming off the goal line.
“We had some turnovers. A couple of interceptions and a fumble recovery,” Swinney said. “There were a lot of big plays offensively. It was one of those days where there was some good and bad on both sides. We had way too many penalties on offense. Some really critical penalties, bad snap in the two-minute drill.”
Swinney continued by saying both offenses won the two-minute drill portion of the scrimmage. B.T. Potter and Jonathan Weitz hit game-winning field goals.
“It was a really good day,” he said. “It was a very thorough practice. The effort is good, but we have a long way to go. We would have gotten smashed today with the mistakes. Too many critical penalties and miss tackles.
“We had some bad mistakes in the red zone with some details in what we have to do in those situational things. We turned it over, so lots of mistakes. We got a stop on a two-minute drive situation, but our defense lined up offside, so it gives them life and they go win the game. So, there were costly mistakes on both sides and some really good things on both sides, but again, just way too many mistakes to win.”
Clemson’s coaches will grade Friday’s scrimmage and will begin coaching them up on Monday when they get back to practice. The Tigers have three practices remaining this spring, including next Saturday’s Spring Game at Memorial Stadium.
“Thank goodness we don’t play today,” Swinney said. “But I think if we can learn from what was put on tape this spring and carry our plan out for post spring and into the summer, then we have a chance to be a good football team.
“I see a lot of positive things in our offensive line. We are really, really pleased with the depth we are developing there and not with just guys on a depth chart, but guys who can go play. There are lot of good things going on, on both sides, but again too many costly mistakes.”
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