Clemson Tigers Best of 2023: Xavier Thomas is Back and Better Than Ever

    Clemson Tigers Best of 2023 is highlighted by the healthy return of longtime defensive end Xavier Thomas.

    In conjunction with our College Football’s Best series, highlighting the top plays, players, highlights, and moments from all 133 teams, we’re here to showcase the best the Clemson Tigers have had to offer in 2023. Who has stood out? What units are turning heads?

    And who from Clemson is among the top mentions in our College Football’s Best series this season?

    Clemson Tigers Best of 2023

    At College Football Network, we watch every game. Every player. Every team. And our notebooks are chock full of top players, plays, highlights, and moments. Today, I’m emptying the notebook.

    Below, find Clemson’s noteworthy players, groupings, or units, all listed under a different category: good, great, grand, or wonderful. Every team across the country has put forth their best efforts in 2023, and through four weeks of action, those players deserve notoriety for what they’ve put forth this season.

    Highlighting the best with a line from the one and only Chris Farley, welcome to this season’s Good, Great, Grand, Wonderful!

    For all 133 teams, head over to College Football’s Best of 2023.

    Jump to the rest of the teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference: Boston College | Duke | FSU | Georgia Tech | Louisville | Miami | NC State | UNC | Pitt | Syracuse | Virginia | Virginia Tech | Wake Forest

    Good: Will Putnam, C

    It’s not hard to find the Tigers’ center as big ole No. 56 puts on a clinic weekly. Will Putnam is clean in pass protection but dominates in space both on the ground and on screen passes.

    Great: Will Shipley/Phil Mafah, RBs

    The two-headed running back duo for Clemson has dominated, while the passing attack has caught up for the Tigers. Will Shipley and Phil Mafah have combined for 527 yards and four scores on the ground, with another 145 yards and two scores through the air.

    Grand: Tyler Brown, WR

    An emerging threat, Tyler Brown has flashed his elite speed on more than one occasion in 2023. He’s a home-run threat who just needs the ball in space to create mismatches against any DB.

    Wonderful: Xavier Thomas, EDGE

    An incredible story of resistance, Xavier Thomas has battled through a ton of injuries in his career and still kept coming. That resiliency has paid off in a big way in 2023, as he leads the team with two sacks and has been a constant force in the backfield.

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