Tigers to the NFL: Where are they going?
by MATT RADOMSKI
This article originally appeared in The Tiger on April 25, 2014 | PRINT

After Clemson’s back-to-back 11 win seasons, there is a lot of optimism about the future of the program under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. However, just as Clemson rises back into the national spotlight, a lot of their stars are moving on to the NFL. With the draft only a couple weeks away, let’s take a look at where some of our former Tigers may be headed.

Sammy Watkins (WR) 1st Round No.3 Overall – Detroit Lions (Trade): Watkins has been the biggest superstar in a Clemson uniform since C.J. Spiller, and has become the clear No.1 wide receiver prospect coming into the draft. Detroit has been drooling over Watkins’ athleticism since they visited Clemson for his pro day, and will be more than willing to trade up to the No. 3 spot to get him. With Watkins, the Lions will have a wide receiver tandem that will be unmatched across the NFL.

Tajh Boyd (QB) 4th Round No. 107 Overall – Oakland Raiders: Tajh Boyd had arguably the best quarterback career in Clemson history, and maybe even ACC history. Over the last two years Tajh broke school and conference records left and right. However, Boyd’s stock crashed this year due to inconsistencies in his performance. The Oakland Raiders are going into the 2014 season without

a clear starter at quarterback. With the release

of Terrelle Pryor and the acquisition of Matt Schaub, Boyd will have the opportunity to either

learn behind a veteran or even compete for the

starting job.

Martavis Bryant (WR) 2nd Round No. 54 Overall – Philadelphia Eagles: Martavis Bryant had a breakout year which was topped off with two amazing touchdown catches in the Orange Bowl. Bryant’s stock has been on the rise since the NFL Combine, where he impressed coaches and scouts around the league with his rare athleticism. Bryant and the Philadelphia Eagles might be a match made in heaven since they released veteran wide receiver DeSean Jackson. With Jackson gone, Bryant has the opportunity to thrive in Chip Kelly’s high-octane offense.

Brandon Thomas (OT) 4th Round No. 112 Overall - Tennessee Titans: Brandon Thomas had an amazing career as a Tiger playing tackle and guard. After an impressive NFL combine, a lot of scouts had Thomas going in the second round. Unfortunately, Thomas tore his ACL during a private workout with the New Orleans Saints. Because of the injury, Thomas will probably drop a few rounds to a team like Tennessee, who needs to improve their offensive line but can wait for Thomas to recover.

Bashaud Breeland (CB) 3rd Round No. 80 Overall – New York Jets: Bashaud Breeland had a very consistent year in 2013, and showed he could do a little bit of everything on defense. Going to the NFL, he has the ideal size, with the speed and power to jam and cover NFL receivers. Breeland will fit

in well with a very physical defense under Rex Ryan. The Jets drafted cornerback Dee Milliner in

the 2013 draft, but because of his inconsistent

play, the Jets will be looking for a few more options in the secondary.

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