3 questions about the Clemson Football defensive ends this spring

Chris Rumph must determine his depth chart this spring.

Nov 25, 2023; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive lineman T.J. Parker (12)
Nov 25, 2023; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive lineman T.J. Parker (12) / Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 3
Next

Will the Tigers have any functional depth at defensive end?

I am fascinated by a Parker/Woods duo on each side of the defensive line this coming season. I am equally concerned about the second-string and beyond.

Cade Denhoff was part of the second-string last year. He saw the most playing time in 2024 after the top three guys, but it was a big difference in snap totals. It’s not that I don’t think Denhoff can do the job. It's more that I just haven’t seen him consistently make a difference, nor have I heard much hype from the people who see the players close up.

That could change this spring as Denhoff gets more opportunities. Multiple other players will try to prove they belong as well. Zaire Patterson, Jaheim Lawson, and AJ Hoffler should all get their opportunities to join Denhoff in the second-string. Story will be in that group too.

We also must be prepared for the possibility that no one separates. That spot might be handled by committee. That could work, but it is more comforting to know one person has proven that they belong on the field.

The silver lining to a committee approach might open up opportunities for true freshman Darien Mayo, who is not enrolled this spring and will join the team this summer.

feed