As in previous years we are taking a look at the snap counts of each position for Clemson football. Rather than starts, number of snaps is a good indicator of true experience. All of the numbers used in this are through the Orange Bowl, they do not include the national championship game. These snap totals also only include snaps on offense or defense, special teams participation is not counted. Players in bold will not be returning for 2016.
2015 was a bit of a renaissance year for Clemson's tight ends. After several seasons of frustrating play from the position Jordan Leggett stepped up and became the player many of us wanted him to be. There was still some frustrating play, especially when it came to blocking, but the tight end became a weapon for Clemson once again. Chad Morris once said tight end was the most important position in his offense, and Clemson fans have learned why.
|Player||Year||Position||Wofford||App State||Louisville||Notre Dame||Georgia Tech||Boston College||Miami||NC State||FSU||Syracuse||Wake||South Carolina||UNC||Oklahoma||Total Snaps|
|D.J. Greenlee||R Sophomore||TE||11||2||0||0||0||2||10||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||25|
|Jay Jay McCullough||R Junior||TE||0||11||4||0||6||8||24||6||5||6||20||3||5||0||98|
|Milan Richard||R Freshman||TE||13||4||0||0||4||3||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||28|
|Stanton Seckinger||R Graduate||TE||0||12||17||14||15||18||10||11||7||14||18||16||2||25||179|
|Cannon Smith||R Freshman||TE||7||4||0||0||6||4||6||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||29|
This year Leggett got the majority of snaps which is what you would expect from having one tight end that is clearly above the rest. Stant Seckinger, for reasons I still don't understand, got a hefty number of snaps and Jay Jay McCullough also got some decent time. Garrett Williams also had some opportunities to play and looked good for a freshman at this level. We were rather high on Williams' potential when he arrived at Clemson and 2015 did nothing to dispel us of that. Jay Jay and Seckinger are both gone now as well which gives several other guys an opportunity to step up.
For 2016 Leggett will continue to be the starter, but spring practice has given us an opportunity to see the strides Milan Richards has made. The backup position will be fought out this fall between Richard, Williams, and Cannon Smith. Richard could arguably be the favorite right now because he has begun to understand the entire position, but Williams has such a nasty streak that his blocking ability could excel and be enough for him to earn the backup job. All three players give us an excellent chance of being productive beyond 2016 however, though given their age it is possible one of them transfers out if they don't see much playing time in 2016.