Three Tigers projected in Top 14 picks of 2017 Mock Draft

by - Assoc. Editor -
Watson helped Clemson win the 2016 National title

Pro Football Focus released their latest 2017 NFL Mock Draft on Wednesday and three Clemson players are projected in the first 14 picks including two players in the first five overall picks.

Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson was projected #2 overall to the San Francisco 49ers.

"There is a lot of debate as to where the quarterbacks will land, and while I have my concerns about Watson after a year marred with inaccuracy and poor decision-making, he’s a worthwhile gamble at the top of the draft," PFF said. "The need for quarterbacks is too strong in this league, and Watson has shown the ability to throw with touch on the outside while also showing the requisite zip to make passes up the seam. He was the No. 3 overall quarterback in the nation in 2016 in PFF grades, but given the high standards put on him, it was a disappointing effort for much of the season as he forced too many passes into coverage and his work in the pocket did not develop as expected. Still, there is plenty to work with in Watson who had a knack for bouncing back from adversity like few quarterbacks, and perhaps that is his greatest attribute and one that pushes him toward the top of the draft."

Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams was projected #5 overall to the Tennessee Titans.

"Like the Browns, the Titans have leverage in the first round with picks at five and 18, and while a cornerback should certainly be on their radar, the depth at the position may allow them to pick one up later in the round," PFF said. "Instead, they go with Williams to provide a big target for QB Marcus Mariota. Williams can win in the possession game, using his big body to win the position battle against cornerbacks on slants and posts but he also has the body control to win in contested, downfield situations. That combination led to the No. 3 receiving grade among FBS receivers in 2016 as Williams was Deshaun Watson’s go-to guy on their national championship run."

Clemson cornerback Cordrea Tankersley was projected #14 overall to the Philadelphia Eagles.

"Another cornerback coming off the board, Tankersley has a 6-foot-1 frame and strong movement skills for his size," PFF said. "He had the No. 6 overall grade in the nation among cornerbacks and he’s allowed a passer rating of 40.0 into his coverage in our two-plus years of grading. The Eagles have a chance to re-vamp their secondary in this draft and it starts with Tankersley who is capable of playing multiple coverages on the outside."

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