Davis Allen isn’t overthinking it heading into his third season in Clemson’s football program.
The first two have been more about getting his feet wet. The Tigers’ junior tight end has just 21 career receptions so far, but Allen could be in line for his largest role yet this fall. Senior Braden Galloway is back after starting all 12 games at the position last season, but Allen has also been getting reps with the ones during fall camp.
Galloway said he and Allen split the first-team reps during Clemson’s first scrimmage over the weekend. One of the bigger tight ends on the roster at 6-foot-6 and 250 pounds, Allen has a physical presence about him that’s often utilized as a run blocker.
But whether it be blocking, catching passes or even contributing on special teams, Allen said the role he envisions for himself this season is simple.
“Wherever I can help, that’s what I think my role is going to be,” Allen said.
Galloway was the Tigers’ primary pass-catcher at the position last season — his 27 receptions were fourth on the team — but Allen also had his most significant contribution in that department. After making just five catches as a true freshman, Allen more than tripled that with 16 receptions last season, including his first four career touchdowns snags — second-most on the team.
That, of course, came amid a season affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Allen said frequently meeting up for quarantine throwing sessions with then-Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who lived nearby, helped improve his confidence in that facet of his game leading up to the season. That and learning from Galloway and others that are also in the tight end room with him.
“Braden is a great route runner, and Jae(lyn) Lay, too,” Allen said. “I’m really just learning from them and trying to take away anything I can from them to help.”
Allen said he’s gotten even more help this offseason when it comes to understanding routes and concepts in the passing game from offensive coordinator Tony Elliott, who now coaches tight ends after previously coaching running backs. It should only help as he continues to evolve into a tight end that can do a little bit of everything for the Tigers.