With the 2021 NFL Draft just days away, there has been much written and discussed about Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
To begin with, the draft will begin in a shocking manner if his name is not the first to be called out; Lawrence is the apparent first overall pick and should be a Jacksonville Jaguar very soon.
There are many talented players (and quarterbacks) in this draft class.
PFF's Big Board ranking:
1. Trevor Lawrence
2. Zach Wilson
3. Justin Fields
10. Trey Lance
13. Mac Jones
— PFF (@PFF) April 26, 2021
Is Trevor Lawrence overrated?
He is not, and here are three reasons why he isn’t.
1. Skill Set
NFL teams look at hours of tape on these draftees, and they are looking at skills.
They see plenty when looking at Lawrence during his three seasons at Clemson.
Trevor Lawrence to Cornell Powell for a 65-yd TD!
18th career TD pass of 50+ yards for #Trevor4Heisman, surpassing Tajh Boyd for most by a Clemson QB since 1950.
— Clemson Football (@ClemsonFB) December 6, 2020
He appears unflappable on the field and can run or throw accurately on and around opposing defenses.
Lawrence is 6’6″ tall and weighs 220 pounds, a body type that does not normally equate with a good rushing quarterback.
He has legs and rushed for 943 yards and 18 rushing touchdowns.
The arm is what people talk about.
At Clemson, he accrued 10,098 passing yards, 90 touchdowns, and threw only 17 interceptions.
He completed 738 passes out of an attempted 1,138 in 40 games at Clemson.
Lawrence has the skills to be a good NFL quarterback.
He has natural ability and has worked to improve his mechanics at Clemson.
At the recommendation of his quarterback coach Brandon Streeter, Lawrence improved his footwork in shotgun for a quicker release.
In September 2020, Lawrence talked about the change.
“In general I switched my stagger this offseason. I think it makes it more efficient on quicker throws having my right foot back. Also on drop back, I feel like I have a better base doing that. Coach [Brandon] Streeter and I talked a lot about it in the offseason and have just been messing around with it, and I think it’s working well.”
Lawrence’s team won the National Championship in 2019.
Trevor Lawrence on @CollegeGameDay:
"I think I am the best QB in the country, but from a numbers stand point, I didn't think I should be in the final 4 (for the Heisman)."
"It's nice to be recognized, but the only award I care about is the National Championship."
Spot the ball
— Kelly Gramlich (@kellygramlich) December 28, 2019
That is the ultimate team accomplishment, but Lawrence has earned many individual honors as well.
- 2018 Cotton Bowl MVP
- 2019 Fiesta Bowl MVP
- 2019 National Championship MVP
- 2019 Heisman Trophy, 7th place
- 2020 Heisman Trophy, 2nd place
Lawrence’s best college season was 2019.
He contracted COVID-19 during the 2020 season so he was not on the field as much in 2020.
NFL scouts look at the tangible qualities like skills and awards, but they are also concerned about the intangibles.
Those include temperament and work ethic.
There have been plenty of accomplished college players who did not succeed in the NFL because of these qualities.
Trevor Lawrence has been in the limelight since his high school years when college scouts and ESPN were following his games.
He has always been composed and handles pressure well.
In fact, he appears far more mature than his chronological age of 21.
Lawrence talked about his approach to the game in September 2020.
“But my mindset and focus level and the little details of the game are a lot better now than they were, and I’ve gotten a lot smarter. I’ve also simplified things and I’m not trying to do too much and I’m taking what’s there. Moving the ball consistently, that’s one of my goals. Just going back to the basics and taking whatever the defense is giving me.”
Watch Lawrence and the other draft picks experience their life-changing moments beginning Thursday night, April 29 at 8 pm EDT.