CLEMSON, S.C. – An ACC showdown by no means materialized. Instead, we were given a excellent take a look at a group that may well be morphing right into a monster. It’s now not an actual marvel that Clemson stays the undisputed absolute best in a league that’s inferior to it was once the ultimate couple of seasons.
But when the Tigers put in combination an entire efficiency, as they did Saturday, it’s transparent they’re worthy of their No. three rating and all of the ones College Football Playoff projections – and that they may well be constructed, or no less than development, to do harm after they arrive.
Here are 3 takeaways from Clemson’s 41-7 victory towards No. 15 NC State:
– Trevor Lawrence isn’t tremendous relatively but – however he may well be quickly. Clemson’s true freshman quarterback confirmed sufficient promise for Dabo Swinney to bench senior Kelly Bryant a couple of weeks again – and of route, Bryant then left the group desiring to switch. The purpose was once to lift the Tigers’ offense, now not such a lot to get to the College Football Playoff, however in hopes of competing and successful after they get there. Lawrence’s 46-yard landing cross to Tee Higgins was once only one instance of what he brings to the offense; higher signs may had been the lengthy throws on cross-field out routes he made glance easy a number of instances. Lawrence stays a piece in growth, however the completed product may well be particular.
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– Despite its vaunted recognition, Clemson’s protection had struggled in cross protection in fresh weeks. But towards a long run NFL quarterback in Ryan Finley, the Tigers had been excellent. In the pivotal first part, when N.C. State controlled best 100 yards – three.7 according to play, with best 4 first downs – Finley was once 7 of 13 for 58 yards. He threw two interceptions, together with one in the crimson zone that killed a promising power to start out the 3rd quarter; on that play, linebacker Jalen Williams dropped deep into protection and outwrestled a receiver for the soccer. Finley’s stats additionally come with an egregious drop by means of receiver Kelvin Harmon on what may’ve been a 75-yard landing cross. But for many of the afternoon, there wasn’t a lot time to cross – see that defensive entrance – or as vital, a lot room to throw downfield.
– As it grew to become out, NC State’s unblemished Five-Zero document was once now not a sign of an elite group. In fresh seasons, this sequence referred to as the Textile Bowl has observed excellent, shut, hard-fought video games. Given the groups’ information, there was once explanation why to wish it may well be aggressive once more. But the Wolfpack was once obviously overmatched from kickoff. In what seems to be a down ACC, there’s lots of explanation why to suspect N.C. State can win much more video games.
Conversely, the place’s the rate bump closing on Clemson’s time table? The Tigers are at Florida State subsequent week, and the Seminoles have began to get issues in combination after that horrible begin to the season. Beyond that … challenging to seek out vital threat, particularly if the Tigers can put in combination extra whole performances like Saturday’s.