Clemson DE Austin Bryant suffered a fractured foot in practice last night and had surgery today. The injury means Bryant will likely be out for up to 6 weeks, possibly longer if the injury doesn’t heal properly. Six weeks would put Bryant back the week of the Louisville game. There has been a lot of speculation that Bryant would return for the Georgia Tech game, but with that game being a Thursday night trip to Atlanta it could be a little ambitious — at least until Bryant begins his rehab work.
The Tigers have been fortunate on the injury front for the last 12 months. Injuries have come at positions of solid depth and there have been only a handful of critical ones. Unfortunately this is a big blow for Clemson. DE was already a position with next to no depth right now and Bryant was counted on to help anchor the line.
Bryant’s injury could mean we will see Christian Wilkins taking snaps at DE. Though a DT, Wilkins did work a little bit at DE during spring practice and depending on how Xavier Kelly and Jabril Robinson progress through the rest of fall camp he could be asked to contribute significant time at DE.
The rotation at DE will be some combination of Xavier Kelly, Richard Yeargin, Clelin Ferrell, and Chris Register. Wilkins almost has to step in at DE to give this unit some punch.