Clemson’s Ferrell headed for NFL
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Clemson’s national championship front four is off to the NFL.
All-American defensive end Clelin Ferrell made it a clean sweep of top-round prospects, joining All-American tackle Christian Wilkins, tackle Dexter Lawrence and end Austin Bryant in heading to the draft.
Ferrell, Wilkins and Bryant all passed on the pros last season for a final year in college. And the group made it count with a 15-0 season and a 44-16 beatdown of Alabama in the national title game Monday night.
Wilkins and Bryant were seniors this year while the suspended Lawrence, who missed Clemson’s two College Football Playoff games after testing positive for a banned substance, declared his intention to leave Wednesday.
The quartet was on a preseason cover of Sports Illustrated under the headlines, “Clemson’s D-line: The Best Ever.” And they lived up to the lofty billing, helping the Tigers lead the country with 54 sacks this season. Ferrell, the stunningly quick junior, led the team with 11½ sacks. He had four tackles and 1½ tackles for loss against the Crimson Tide. He led the Tigers this season with 11½ sacks.