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SEC’s top 25 players of 2013: No. 19

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SDS is continually counting down the top 25 players in the SEC for 2013, and we’re not stopping until we get to No. 1. I know you’ll agree with every single one…

No. 19 Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina (JR)

2013 stats: 40 tackles, 11.5 TFL, 3 sacks, 9 QB hurries, 1 FF

Why he’s No. 19: Compare 2013 Jadeveon Clowney to 2012, and the numbers are significantly less. Clowney recorded 23.5 TFL in 2012, along with 13 sacks. He made 12 less tackles for loss and 10 less sacks in 2013.

However, he still disrupted offenses throughout the season.

When Clowney wants to be, he’s the top player in the country at his position. He’s an explosive player who uses his explosion to jump past offensive tackles and run down quarterbacks once they desert the pocket. Offenses scheme around Clowney unlike last season. That’s not the complete reason his numbers dropped, but it tells part of the story. He struggled, though, disengaging blocks when he didn’t explode past offensive tackles.

He played through sickness and minor injuries the entire season, often landing him to be criticized everyday. Obviously the player Clowney has grown into being has such a high upside in the NFL, and his talent and ability can’t be questioned.

However, what will be questioned (and already is) is his desire and work ethic. He truly could be unstoppable, but does he truly want to be the best player at his position? It’s fair to critique Clowney in this area.

Top 25 player rankings:

Photo Credit: David Manning-USA TODAY Sports





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Comments 3

  1. All eyes will be on Mr. Clowney the next couple of NFL seasons to see if he is a BOOM or BUST high profile guy. I personally thought he underperformed this season, given the hype. Sure he was double teamed and schemed against last season but still, he didn’t jump off the TV screen like I thought he should. The NFL will run the ball his side and everything else, so I’m excited to see how he measures up.

  2. Okay, Cooper. I won’t call you an idiot for your opinion. I will say let us see how many of the top 18 players in your poll get drafted before Clowney in the NFL draft. I am sure some of them are not in the draft. IMHO, if Clowney is not the first draft pick, it will be because some team needs a quarterback, as many of them do. I don’t believe any non-QB will be drafted ahead of Clowney.

    • Clowney will be a top-five pick, but that doesn’t mean he lived up to his billing this year. He should be drafted in the top five, because he has one of the highest upsides…ever. Last year’s season was monstrous, but we don’t merely rank players based on upside, we rank them based on what they proved on the field, not on draft boards. Clowney is a great player, and it has been fun covering him and watching him, but he didn’t exactly put up numbers like last season. Thus, he was a top 20 player on the field.