Trevor Lawrence has long been considered the favorite to go number one overall in the 2021 NFL Draft. However, how many other Tigers could hear their names called in the first two rounds?
Pro Football Focus (PFF) recently ranked their top fifty prospects for next April’s NFL Draft and three Clemson Tigers made the cut.
Not surprisingly, in the top spot was Trevor Lawrence.
Lawrence was the highest-graded true freshman quarterback we’ve ever seen in 2018 (90.7), and he followed that up by pushing his grade even higher in 2019 (91.1). The 2020 season will be the ultimate test for him, as his top two targets, Tee Higgins (draft) and Justyn Ross (injury), will not be suiting up for the Tigers this year.PFF
A little further down the list is Clemson running back Travis Etienne. The back-to-back ACC Player of the Year comes in at No. 29 on the list, which puts him right on the fringe of being a first rounder.
The most explosive running back in college football, Etienne broke the PFF record for broken tackles per attempt last season, shedding 91 tackles on 207 rushing attempts.PFF
Coming in at No. 38 is defensive end Xavier Thomas. Entering his junior year, Thomas has still yet to live up to the astronomical expectations that were placed upon him per his arrival on campus. However, all signs point to that kind of season in 2020, and if that happens, expect Thomas to shoot up draft boards.
Thomas featured in an odd role last season that didn’t play to his strengths whatsoever. However, he showed his true talents as a true freshman when he earned an 84.2 pass-rushing grade on 150 pass-rushing snaps.PFF