Vic Beasley had been warned by Dabo Swinney not to get frustrated if a lot of plays didn't come his way Thursday night against Georgia Tech.
Quandon Christian, on the other hand, figured he'd find himself in the thick of the action - his tackling ability standing between the Yellow Jackets and their characteristic long runs.
Each Tiger did the job given him, and the result - in concert with others on the defense who did the same - smothered Georgia Tech's flexbone option.
The Yellow Jackets finished with 248 yards on the ground - well below their No. 5 national average - and a chunk of came late when it didn't really matter.
The Tiger defense had five three-and-outs, including three straight to start the game, and 22 times Clemson stuffed the Jackets for two yards or less. The Tigers finished the game with 10 tackles for loss, including three by Christian and two by Beasley.
Beasley said "playing with relentless effort" was the key for the Tigers' defense.
"It was so important for us to get to the ball and make tackles, especially for loss by making big plays out there," Beasley said.
“The first couple of drives were awesome," Christian said. "Everyone was doing their jobs and kept getting up and going at them the first couple of plays. We wanted to come out and stop them early and we were able to do that tonight.
“I definitely think we were consistent during the game. We were pretty much disciplined the whole game besides a couple of plays.”
Christian said the extra practice time was important in preparing for Tech's option.
“The bye week definitely helped us," he said. "It gave us a chance to get three days ahead of game week and that really helped us a lot.”
Beasley said there was a sense of accomplishment when Georgia Tech had start throwing the ball to gain yardage.
“We knew that if we got up on them and gave them pressure that they would be forced to throw the ball and that is was we did," Beasley said. "We forced them to a throwing situation and capitalized.
“It means a lot to our defense. We have a lot of good pass rushers on our team, I’m one of them, so whenever I know that its second and long or third and long I go after the quarterback and try to execute the plan.”