Would Trevor Lawrence be No. 1 pick if eligible for 2020 NFL Draft?

Trevor Lawrence, Clemson Tigers. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
Trevor Lawrence, Clemson Tigers. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images) /

Joe Burrow will be the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft but that could only be because Clemson rising junior Trevor Lawrence isn’t eligible.

While the biggest names at quarterback in the 2020 NFL Draft consist of Joe Burrow (the no-brainer number one pick), Tua Tagovailoa, and Justin Herbert, we already know who THE biggest name will be a year from now: Trevor Lawrence of Clemson.

Lawrence took all of college football by storm when he stepped in for Kelly Bryant during the 2018 season. He played so well that Bryant eventually transferred and the job was Lawrence’s for the next two years due to collegiate players not being able to enter the draft until they’re three years out of high school.

In his two seasons at Clemson, Lawrence has thrown for a total of 6,945 yards, 66 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions while making it to the National Championship Game both years. He won it as a freshman against Alabama (in blowout fashion too) and then lost in this year’s game to LSU, but it wasn’t for lack of effort on Lawrence’s part.

Lawrence was the most exciting college prospect in the 2018 season, but due to his late start in the season, he wasn’t Heisman worthy when stacked up against the other top options. Many thought he’d be the Heisman winner in 2019, but midway through the season, his numbers weren’t nearly as crazy.

That said, Lawrence is the prospect NFL teams covet. He’s big (6-foot-6 and 220 pounds) and – to steal a draft cliche – can make all the throws. He’s also shown he can do damage with his legs, rushing for 740 yards and 10 touchdowns. Nine of those 10 touchdowns were in the 2019 season, showing just how lethal Lawrence can be with his legs.

Lawrence needs to play one more season before he can leave Clemson, but what if that wasn’t the case? Where would he go in this year’s draft?

Had Lawrence been eligible for this draft, it’d have been interesting to see if he went first overall. Burrow had arguably the best season in college football ever, but Lawrence is probably the better all-around talent. He’s bigger, stronger, more athletic and has a better arm. The Bengals would have had a really tough decision to make in that case: Would they go for the Ohio native who threw for 60 touchdowns and won the title or the player who made it to back-to-back championship games and was electric in both seasons?

Then, if the Bengals had passed on Lawrence at one, what teams would have been frantically trying to move up to nab him with the No. 2 pick?

When looking at the first round teams who could use a quarterback, it wouldn’t be shocking to see a team try to swap picks with Washington to slide into the pick. That’s assuming the Redskins would have even been willing to move, as they could have decided to buy stock in Lawrence as well.

Even though Lawrence won’t hear his name called this year, college football fans will get to watch him for another year, provided there is a normal fall season, and that’s exciting to think about.

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