The Clemson Tigers come into this week as the second-ranked team in the country, but there are some questions surrounding this team. Clemson will host rival Florida State on Saturday in a game that will give it a chance to silence some doubters. The Seminoles have struggled in recent seasons, but it appears like they are starting to turn things around.
Florida State comes into this game with a 3-2 record, and they have won each of their last two games. The Seminoles have lost two games by a combined 12 total points this season, but this will be a huge challenge.
Clemson is a perfect 5-0 so far this season, but it hasn’t been as dominant as in years past. The Tigers survived an upset bid by North Carolina just two weeks ago, winning by a score of 21-20. Clemson is a 27-point favorite over Florida State in this game.
Clemson Need Lawrence to Be Better
Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is one of the most talented quarterbacks in the country, but he has struggled at times this season. Lawrence has completed just 62 percent of his passes and has already thrown eight interceptions. Running back Travis Etienne has bailed out this offense at times this season, averaging 7.0 yards per carry. There is no doubt that the Clemson offense can score points in a hurry, but they need more from Lawrence.
The Clemson defense has been great again this season, and they are allowing just 12.0 points per game. The Tigers used their defense to win the national championship a season ago, and it looks like they are going to do the same this season. Clemson has racked up 19 sacks so far this season, and they will blitz early and often in this game.
Florida State Needs to Run the Ball
If the Florida State Seminoles are going to win this game, they are going to have to run the ball a ton. The Seminoles are averaging just 121.2 rushing yards per game, and that won’t get the job done in this game. Florida State quarterbacks — James Blackman and Alex Hornibrook — have thrown 14 touchdowns to just two interceptions this season, but they need the running game to give their defense a break.
The Seminoles are giving up close to 30 points per game this season, and that number won’t get the job done against the Tigers. Florida State has recorded 17 sacks, and getting pressure on Lawrence will be a key in this game. The Seminoles know that they won’t be able to shut Clemson down completely, but they have to keep this one close.
Seminoles Keep it Close Against Mighty Clemson
Clemson will likely look much better after figuring some things out during its bye week, but it had a lot of questions to answer. The Tigers have been extremely dominant at home in the last few seasons, but it appears that other teams are catching up. Florida State comes in with some momentum, and it will give Clemson a good battle in this one. The Tigers are going to win, but bet on Florida State +27.0 to keep this one close.