ESPN College GameDay host Rece Davis discussed Clemson’s offensive struggles and believes the problems the Tigers have had on that side of the ball to this point in the 2021 season might not be fixable.
“Of all the teams that we talked about that are struggling, relatively speaking — or maybe a better way to put this, not as dominant as they’ve been — the one that I don’t know that it gets fixed is the Clemson offense,” Davis said this week in a conversation with David Pollack on The ESPN College Football Podcast.
Clemson (2-1, 1-0 ACC) fell to No. 9 in the AP Top 25 Poll following its 14-8 win over Georgia Tech last Saturday, when the Tigers scored only two touchdowns and were held to 207 yards of offense through the first three quarters after managing just 180 total yards in the season-opening loss to Georgia two weeks earlier.
Through three games this season, sophomore quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei has completed 59.3 percent of his passes for 475 yards and one touchdown pass with two interceptions, while rushing for 47 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries.
While Uiagalelei has had his issues thus far, Davis expects him to get back on track but isn’t sure the same can be said for the Tigers’ offensive line.
“Uiagalelei needs to play better. Everybody understands that, and he’s capable of it and I think he probably will,” Davis said. “But one thing that I don’t know that is fixable at this point in the season necessarily — execution is fixable, but just physical prowess — is the offensive line. I don’t know that that’s going to change necessarily.”
Clemson travels to Raleigh, N.C., for a matchup with NC State at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, and Davis wonders if the Wolfpack could potentially pull off the upset with the Tigers sputtering on offense entering the game.
“I think they are going to have period struggles on offense the rest of the season, and maybe North Carolina State Saturday afternoon is the team that can expose that and hand them another loss,” Davis said. “Because you talked about transfer portal and you also talked about old guys — well, NC State’s got a bunch of those.”
— Rece Davis (@ReceDavis) September 21, 2021
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