Clemson Tiger Football: Michael Palmer Has Been a Difference-Maker

Chad HensleyCorrespondent IOctober 26, 2009

He may not remember, but Clemson Tigers' tight end Michael Palmer played another great game this past weekend in the victory over the Miami Hurricanes, in which he had five catches for a career high 74 yards and a touchdown.

Memories of the huge win might be a little fuzzy for Palmer because of a vicious helmet-to-helmet hit by Hurricane linebacker Darryl Sharpton. The hit rang Palmer's bell, and you could see his eyes were glazed over immediately after hitting the ground. It probably should have been a penalty, but I believe it was unavoidable as Palmer was flipped wildly right before Sharpton came in full speed for the tackle.

The most unbelieveable thing about the play? Despite being knocked senseless, Palmer held onto the ball until he hit the ground.  

He again proved he is Mr. Reliable for this Clemson Tiger team, as he has been making plays all season.

Palmer's extremely soft hands, great routes, and knowing when he needs to get beyond the sticks has made him the most consistent receiver for redshirt freshman quarterback Kyle Parker. 

Palmer already has 21 catches, which is the most by a Tiger tight end in 25 years.  He only has two touchdowns on the year—but I don't believe he has dropped a pass, and almost every catch is a first down.

Credit that to offensive coordinator Billy Napier, who has obviously made a genuine effort to involve the tight ends in the passing game. Napier has his critics—including me—but this is one thing that has really helped this Tiger team get those third-down conversions they haven't normally gotten in years past.

Hopefully, Palmer will return soon from the concussion, because the Tigers need their go-to guy if they want to stay in the hunt for the ACC title.