While the majority of the discussion coming out of the Clemson victory over Louisville centers around the suffocating defense neutralizing Lamar Jackson, the Clemson offense deserves its due praise, as well.
In a week where the Tigers surpassed 40 points for the second time in three games, three Clemson players received recognition from the ACC as Players of the Week.
Quarterback Kelly Bryant won the award for his position, while Taylor Hearn came away with offensive lineman of the week and Will Spiers received the punter’s honors.
Bryant, who has had to answer repeated questions as the successor to Deshaun Watson, scored three total touchdowns and threw for 316 yards in the win. He has done more than his fair share to quiet the initial critics, averaging 8.8 yards per attempt (4th best in the ACC) and playing an early-season schedule more arduous than any quarterback in the conference. Bryant’s eight total touchdowns through three games (5 rushing, 3 passing) rank second to Georgia Tech’s TaQuon Marshall for the most in the ACC among quarterbacks.
Bryant says despite the success there’s still plenty left for him to accomplish:
The supporting cast for Bryant has also served him well, as Ray-Ray McCloud caught seven passes for 115 yards including a 79-yard touchdown scamper. McCloud explains what went into the play design, and how Bryant continues to be a leader for this offense:
After having its struggles against Auburn, the running attack returned to the form last seen in the opening game win over Kent State. While Tavien Feaster was the primary feature back (10 carries, 92 yards), the home-run ability of Travis Etienne also showed off. The freshman from Louisiana ripped off an 81-yard touchdown run, showing off the impressive speed that Clemson coaches gushed about throughout preseason camp.
Etienne, who had an offer to stay in state at LSU, explained what brought him to these Tigers as opposed to the bayou bengals: