Clemson football: Five questions that require answers

Clemson football has its first bye-week of the season this week.

After the first two Clemson football games of 2020, there are some absolutes that you can take to the bank. The first being Trevor Lawrence is playing on another level. There is a tremendous amount of firepower at the skill positions that make the Tigers lethal regardless of the competition.

The first open date comes at a critical point as the Tigers prepare to play six consecutive games that will take the calendar into early November.

There are several questions that need to be addressed over the next 10 days to ensure Clemson stays on track to play for another National Championship. Athletics Director Dan Radakovich should be applauded for being able to schedule Citadel and support their program.

It was not a game that helped answer any of the significant questions facing the Tigers as they move ahead.

Is the Clemson football secondary ready for primetime?

It is hard to know what Virginia will look like as they transition to Brennan Armstong at the quarterback position. What we do know is the Cavaliers were able to throw 283 yards against the Tigers last December. With Miami and their new high powered offense looming following the Virginia game, the secondary is going to have to be locked in.

As we saw Saturday night in Louisville, Miami is fully capable of making a defense look inept if they are misaligned or have their eyes in the wrong spots.

How much progress can the backup Clemson football offensive line make in two weeks?

Coach Swinney did not place 100 percent of the blame on Saturday’s second half goose egg on the offensive line but it is clear that there is plenty of opportunity for improvement. There is likely not a more difficult transition to college football than on the line.

The ability to understand schemes, line calls, front changes, and techniques demands a lot of individuals who are expected to gel and perform as a cohesive unit. It is time to start to see the second group OL start to make a tangible improvement.

Are Clemson football receivers Frank Ladson and Joseph Ngata ready to assert themselves as alphas?

It is known that Frank Ladson Jr. and Joseph Ngata missed valuable time during camp due to protocols. On Saturday Frank Ladson flashed with two big-time touchdown catches. Ngata was held out Saturday for precautionary reasons.

As the competition ramps up for the Tigers, the production and consistency of play from Ladson and Ngata must increase accordingly.

Is it reasonable to continue to expect the dominance we have seen from the Clemson football freshman defensive linemen?

As Xavier Thomas works his way back and Justin Foster attempts to work his way back from injury, and the loss for Ruke Orhorhoro for an extended period of time, the Tigers will have to rely on their young talented freshmen defensive linemen.

Next: 4 things Tigers are missing early in the 2020 season

Bryan Bresee, Myles Murphy, Demonte Capehart, and Tre Williams will be relied on in various ways throughout the next six games. Their ability to fight through the wall that freshmen often hit is something to watch as the games begin to stack up.