Pro Football Focus released its list of Top 50 College Football players heading into 2019 yesterday, and six Clemson Tigers made the cut. One of those six was of course QB Trevor Lawrence, who actually topped the list.
Pro Football Focus (PFF) uses analytics to grade players, taking every snap played into account. They go back as far as five years and in their system, all positions are created equally, meaning there’s no more value placed on one position when compared to another.
Again, 6 Tigers are on the list. Think about that. 8.3% of the players on this list are Clemson Tigers. No other team had more than 3 players on in the rankings (Alabama and Wisconsin). Wow.
Here are the six Tigers that made the list, where they’re ranked, and their grade.
33. RB Travis Etienne 90.1
He had the highest two year grade of any returning FBS running back.
30. LB Isaiah Simmons 88.9
He’s been targeted 59 times the last two seasons, and has allowed just a single TD. He’s forced nine incompletions, which leads all P5 linebackers over that time period.
29. DE Xavier Thomas 83.6
His 17.3% pressure rating is third highest among returning P5 edge rushers.
19. WR Tee Higgins 87.7
Since 2017 he’s averaged the nation’s second highest yards per route run. He’s forced 16 missed tackles after the catch and has 17 contested catches. Last season he had only 2 drops.
3. WR Justyn Ross 91.4
Fourth best grade ever given to a true freshman reciever by PFF. Averaged 21.7 yards per catch, the highest among returning WRs. Hasn’t even made his first start yet.
1. QB Trevor Lawrence 90.7
Highest overall grade ever given to any true freshman at any position by PFF.
To see the full list and rundown, click the link below.