Barring injuries and push-come-to-shove, Clemson likely could have made-do without playing first-year freshman receivers Mike Williams and T.J. Green this season.
A redshirt year might have ended up as a good investment four years from now; but it wouldn't have yielded as big a dividend for next season, when both Williams and Green can expect to take on bigger roles.
With Sammy Watkins pegged for an early departure to NFL, and some draft analysts suggesting chances for Martavis Bryant and Charone Peake, as well, opportunity will abound for Clemson's next generation of receivers over the next two seasons.
Williams and Green are getting a jump-start on their careers, with an eye to the future, certainly; but both hope to figure increasingly into the Tigers' plans this season.
In addition to working as a receiver, Green is also contributing as a kickoff returner and a member of the Tigers' kickoff coverage team.
Meanwhile, Williams - who position coach Jeff Scott says reminds him of Nuk Hopkins with his ball-skills and ability to 'high-point' the football - has made his biggest impact so far as a blocker.
Williams got only one snap in the opener against Georgia, but he look advantage by "doing my job," he said.
"They took out a tight end and told me to go get 'em for one play," Williams said. "They told me I did a good job on that play - graded 100 percent."
Against S.C. State, he got a bigger opportunity.
"I played like 32 snaps, and graded out at 85 percent," he said. "I caught two passes and had a lot of good blocks. When Coach put me in the game, he said this was a chance for me to build trust in the coaches. I think I did that."
Green didn't play against Georgia, but got his first taste of action against S.C. State. He caught one pass.
"I'm on kickoff and kickoff return," he said. "Right now I'm just working to get better, learning the offense."
While eventually he hopes to work himself into a role as a mainstay receiver, for now Williams says he's happy doing the dirty work.
"I think I've shown Coach Scott that I'm a great blocker," Williams said. "I can get down the field and make blocks. And I can go for some deep balls.
"Right now I'm working on getting into my routes faster."