Play action key to Tajh Boyd's success

Jeremy Brevard/USA TODAY Sports

Clemson’s Tajh Boyd runs in for one of his two rushing touchdowns in Saturday’s win against Georgia.If you take out an 0-4 mark against South Carolina, Clemson has actually been pretty good against the SEC since Dabo Swinney took over as head coach in 2009, going 5-1 against all others.

Saturday’s win made it two straight games where Clemson beat a top-10 SEC team, following a win over No. 8 LSU in the Chick-fil-A Bowl last season.

Tajh Boyd, in a performance that could kickstart a Heisman Trophy campaign, passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more. It was only the second time in his career he had multiple passing and rushing touchdowns.

Boyd completed 67 percent of his passes off play action, including all three of his touchdowns. Since the start of the 2011 season, more than half (35) of Boyd’s touchdown passes (69) have come off play action.

As for the Clemson receiving corps, Sammy Watkins led the way with six receptions for 127 yards, with much of that total coming on his 77-yard touchdown in the first quarter.

Like on that play, he did much of his work after the catch, racking up 102 YAC. It was the third time he topped 100 yards after the catch in his career, also doing so on consecutive weeks in September 2011 against Auburn and Florida State.

Watkins’ big-play potential was evident after his freshman season when he averaged 56.5 YAC per game, but his production dipped last season to 46.9 YAC per game. Saturday’s performance was a step toward erasing concerns about regaining his previous explosiveness.