Jared Dudley

Clippers' Jared Dudley was making 43.9% of his shots and averaging 7.7 shots a game before the Clippers played the Utah Jazz Saturday night at Staples Center. (Jae C. Hong / Associated Press / December 28, 2013)

Thirty-one games into his seventh NBA season, the Clippers' Jared Dudley is having the worst shooting year of his career.

He had made 43.9% of his shots before the Clippers played the Utah Jazz on Saturday night at Staples Center, and was averaging only 7.7 shots per game.

The diminished production has weighed on Dudley.

"When you're a role guy, there are games when you're not going to shoot that much," said Dudley, a 6-foot-7 small forward. "One game I shot eight threes. Some games you're not going to shoot a three, depending on the defense. You've got to be ready."

Dudley was averaging 8.7 points per game and was making 34.7% of his three-point attempts.

In the last two games, at Golden State and Portland, Dudley had a total of four points. He didn't score against the Trail Blazers, missing three shots.

In those two games, Dudley was two for eight from the field, 0 for 3 from the three-point line.

"I don't know why he's not playing well, but we need him to play well," Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said. "That [small forward] spot right now, it's been hurting us a little bit. But Jared is still not healthy. He's getting healthy. We've got to get him in better shape."

Dudley has played in every game this season, but tendinitis in his right knee remains an issue.

"I feel a lot better than I was the first 15, 20 games," Dudley said. "I was like 60%, where I'm just out there because they needed the body. I couldn't bend my leg. Now I'm about 85%. So it's a lot better than it was before."

Dudley said he has noticed that teams are trying to make sure he doesn't get wide-open looks anymore.

He said some teams are starting to double-team Chris Paul and Blake Griffin less often, preferring to let the Clippers' two All-Stars score but limit their assists.

"We're going to see it throughout," Dudley said. "We just have to make adjustments. You have a guy like Jamal [Crawford] who can get his own shot, where they can't really stop that. So for us [role players], we just have to find different ways to when we get our chances."

broderick.turner@latimes.com

Twitter:@BA_Turner