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Deondre Francois praises well-coached Clemson defense

Francois says his arsenal of explosive receivers make it a little bit easier on him.

NCAA Football: Wake Forest at Florida State Glenn Beil-USA TODAY Sports

Clemson will come to Tallahassee ranked number two in the nation. They’re also ranked fourth overall in total defense as coordinator Brent Venables has his defense humming yet again after they went out and shutdown NC State and Ryan Finley, who many considered to be the best QB in the ACC.

Deondre Francois is currently ranked ahead of Finley in passing yards and is coming off of a stellar performance against Wake Forest that won him ACC’s quarterback of the week. Francois has played against a Venables coached defense before, and he says not many scheme it up like Clemson’s DC.

“Just well coached—good defensive coordinator who schemes up real well,” Francois said. “Just the past two years I’ve been watching him and studying him, he does a good job preparing each week for whoever he plays.”

A major reason for Clemson’s success on defense is their imposing defensive line, which will be more than a handful on Saturday. Florida State has struggled on the offensive line, and injuries haven’t helped, but the ‘Noles will look to field the same starting unit for consecutive weeks for the first time.

“It’s very significant,” Francois said. “We’ve been having a lot of injuries and we know we’ve had to move a lot of guys around. Whoever is out there we’re just going to have to prepare them well for whatever situation they’re going to be in.”

Clemson’s secondary has been overshadowed by their front four, but they played a big role in shutting down Ryan Finley this past week. Francois says FSU’s plethora of explosive skill position players makes it a little bit easier against a tough defense like the Tigers.

“It does make it easier,” Francois said. “You know, guys can’t key in on certain guys that we like to throw the ball to because we have a lot of guys that can make plays. So, it’s better for us as an offense knowing that defenses can’t just double Noonie or double Terry because we have other guys that can make plays too.”

The ‘Noles head into the game as home underdogs as Clemson is a two touchdown favorite. Francois knows they will have to come out focused if they want to protect their home field.

“They’re the number two team, you know, undefeated and coming into our home,” Francois said. “This is an opportunity for us. We just have to come out ready to play.”