NFL rules force Trevor Lawrence to stay two more years at Clemson

Getty Images

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is ready for the NFL. But the NFL won’t let him play.

Lawrence, the true freshman who led Clemson to a dominating national championship victory over Alabama on Monday night, is absolutely good enough that he would get drafted this year if he were allowed to enter the 2019 NFL draft. The 6-foot-5, 205-pound Lawrence put up comparable numbers in Clemson’s offense to those put up by Deshaun Watson, who was good enough at Clemson that he was the 12th overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft and has played very well for two years with the Texans.

Unfortunately for the 19-year-old Lawrence, the league’s rules require players to be three years out of high school before they can turn pro.

That means Lawrence has to spend two more years not earning paychecks. Two more years getting sacked by 300-pound defensive linemen, knowing that every single hit he takes could affect his future ability to play pro football and cost him millions of dollars.

If Lawrence doesn’t want to risk an injury before earning his NFL millions, his only other option would be to sit out for two years, which would mean arriving in the NFL extremely rusty. It’s not a realistic option for him. In most fields, a young adult who’s good enough to do the job is free to shop his services to businesses willing to employ him. In his chosen field, the only choice is to play for free in the NCAA for three years before playing for the NFL team that drafts him.

That’s a raw deal for a great player.

202 responses to “NFL rules force Trevor Lawrence to stay two more years at Clemson

  1. That’s the rules, man. It’s designed to protect the players. Entering the NFL at 20 or 21 years old after 3 years college (which is on a scholarship, BTW), and instantly earning millions is hardly a raw deal. I’d give up my job for that “raw deal”..

  2. Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.

  3. These atrocities will continue until someone like Lawrence actually sits out one or more years. It will happen soon. Agents already have top notch facilities where a player can stay in shape, continue to improve his skills, and be seen by scouts. Agents can also loan a player money against his future earnings.

    The player will have to be good enough that the NFL cannot ignore him. Otherwise, the NFL will blackball anyone who tries to upset their free farm system.

  4. There are a lot of people qualified for many careers as 19 year old kids but the job requirements include a diploma.

    Football is actually an outlier here as men can “apply” without a degree and don’t even have to go to college at all.

  5. He may not be getting a pay check, but he is getting a free education and chance to get a degree. It may not be cash, but its worth tens of thousands a year. Im willing to bet he probably also lives and is treated like a God on campus. Again, not cash, but it counts for something.
    And the NFL should not take in guys out of high school. Their bodies are not going to be ready for the NFL yet.

  6. These kids are getting valuable scholarships and experience as well as laying a foundation for an nfl career. Stop sobbing for them and encourage them to have fun playing college ball while they live up to their end of the deal.
    A big part of responsible adulthood is abiding by agreements. How about we encourage them to have enough character to put off going pro and abide by the agreement they have already made?

  7. Just curious here, is there anything about jumping ship to the AAF to get paid while playing, then jump to the NFL after you have been out of high school for 3 years?

    Or for that same question, with the CFL?

  8. Yes. And so does every other true freshman who did or didn’t play this year. Just because of one or two outliners you can’t say the rule is a bad one.

  9. On the one hand, yeah, this is a raw deal (though remember, college athletes aren’t supposed to just be there to be athletes – they’re supposed to also be, you know, college students), on the other hand, a 19 year old in the NFL? They’d get wrecked pretty quickly I think. At 19 his body probably isn’t even finished developing yet, and the NFL isn’t like baseball, where there are minor leagues. If the NFL ever did make a true minor league system then I could see this being a ridiculous rule, but with how much faster and harder NFL athletes hit than college ones, I have no issues with guys needing to be around 21ish before being drafted.

    Besides, maturity issues are a big problem already as it is in the NFL. I don’t imagine that situation would improve with a bunch of 19 year olds added to NFL Rosters.

  10. Let’s not proclaim him the next Tom Brady, the kid is only 19 years old and needs to Hoan his skills and learn to read offenses , etc. Granted, he had a great rookie season at Clemson but if he played in the NFL next year, they would eat him up for dinner……2 more years at school would be the best thing for him, the money will always be there

  11. He should stay at school he will be great pro but get ur education u will have ur chance and shame on you for thinking he should leave he is a freshman 19 and he is ready too lead men in their 30s the money will always be their

  12. On the flip side, some job fields require one or more of the following: experience, degree, certification, apprenticeship.

    The military example doesn’t fly. Gambling and drinking require the person be at least 21. Many car rental agencies require a person to be 25. The military at 18 is essentially an entry-level job. Those who join at that age are called “enlisted personnel.” If they want to be an officer they have to…(wait for it)…go to college.

  13. Staying at Clemson is not his only option. Alliance of American Football – join that and possibly become it’s biggest star; ditto CFL. Again there is injury risk but a pay check and possible endorsement money. Clemson is not his only option but it may be his best option. Choose wisely.

  14. Like just about every other 19 year old, Lawrence needs to stay in school and mature—maybe put on 20lbs-30lbs and fine tune his skills. Too many come out too soon (not in just football) then fizzle out in the NFL after 3 years

  15. He can’t just not play football for a year or more regardless of how hard he works out. He could play in the CFL but how much do they actually pay? And the competition is better in college.

    But I agree it’s a sham. This kid is the real deal. He could go top 10 this year. He has all the tools. But Tua (bad night last night) would also go in the first or 2nd this year but he’s forced to sit another year also.

  16. The NFL will only draft players that can play right away.

    He should sue to overturn this discriminatory rule designed to protect the exploitation of star players by colleges.

  17. I’m not sure why some professional sports just don’t let younger kids enter the draft. If the NFL is a business, then doesn’t anybody have the right to compete in the NFL straight out of high school if their proven to be good enough?

    Watching Trevor Lawrence at 19 years old, half the league would kill for him.

  18. golions1 says:

    January 8, 2019 at 6:03 am

    They should pay major college football and basketball players.
    _____________________________________________________________________

    They do, they get a free education, free room and board, free food, free medical care, free workout facility including sports nutrition and trainer, free clothing

  19. With all of the profits raked in by the universities, lining pockets, and otherwise redistributed to lesser sports, there certainly should be some set aside for trust funds for the top athletes who generate the ticket sales.

  20. golions1 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:03 am
    They should pay major college football and basketball players
    +++++++++++++
    They do. They get like $800 “rent” money.

  21. The NFL doesn’t care if a player sits college other than the time lost picking their abilities apart. The rule will never change because it prevents teams from taking even bigger risks than they already do when pulling a college player into the NFL. You think the teams want to have to draft a 19 year old who can’t contribute yet (no way this kid is actually ready to run an NFL offense given the subtleties of them) so will take up a valuable roster spot doing nothing but practicing? There would have to be roster changes to allow this to happen which means even more expenses for a group of men who show a clear aversion to paying players. It’s just not happening.

  22. golions1 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:03 am
    They should pay major college football and basketball players.
    ———————
    Look here guys, we have a solution everyone overlooked. I am sure he will solve for title IX in his next post paying females for Basketball and perhaps volleyball. Oh wait, not enough play volleyball to match the football rosters so I guess they’ll have to pay the female lacrosse (but not male), and softball teams too. I am sure he has it all worked out, it has to be thoroughly thought through.

  23. The attempts here to push 19-20 year olds into the NFL is sickening. Could Lawrence do it? Maybe but it`s not good for the NFL or 19 year olds. Look at the body difference between when these lineman that are freshman and juniors. I don`t understand why anybody thinks that would be a good idea. As soon as a couple teenagers got seriously injured everybody would be ripping them for doing it. Dumbest shortsighted idea i`ve heard in a long time.

  24. The NFL is over the top on this rule,especially in comparison to the National Basketball Association. That begs the question is there a legal option against the NFL for having a policy of age discrimination. Age is a protected class; So one should be able to play quarterback in the NFL and make millions as long as they have the ability. The legal age to be an adult in this country is eighteen (18). The NFL could be breaking the age discrimination laws by not allowing 19 year old Trevor Lawrence to make millions. It’s an NFL rule that could be considered discriminatory or against federal law. Lawyers should weigh in on this….

  25. I always find it funny when people say things like the NFL will be there and a college education plus perks is payment enough. He could get hurt and then his value in the NFL goes away or declines significantly. You know what will definitely be there in 5, 10, 20, or even 30 years? A university. And he could pay for all 4 years with one game check in the NFL. I get that he may not be truly ready, but maybe he is and that isn’t our choice. Additionally you are out of your mind if you think that is the real motivation. The motivation is purely profit driven. Anyone that tells you different is lying or blind.

  26. I’m so old i saw Staubach, I saw vince young, i saw tebow, i saw flutie, i saw marino , being a huge college football fan i have seen them all. NEVER have i seen a kid like this:

    perfect size
    Athletic
    tough
    an absolute cannon
    COMPOSED !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    If he plays two more years Clemson might not lose a game

  27. He hasn’t even scratched the surface of what kind of college QB he can become. Durability is part of it though. If he’s not durable enough to survive three years in college then he shouldn’t be in the NFL to begin with.

    He’s going to be alright though. He’s a man amongst boys. Let him enjoy his carefree college years. The grown man business of the NFL isn’t gong anywhere.

    It’s ashame that Tennesse had some down years, because they could have easily recruited Trevor Lawrence. Knoxville is right up 75 North from his hometown Carteraville. Tennessee should be monopolizing North Georgia talent/

    Great rookie season by him, and It’s going to be fun watching he and Justin Fields battle for that number 1 draft spot in 2021.

  28. golions1 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:03 am
    They should pay major college football and basketball players
    ++++++++++++++++
    They do. They get a stipend each month. Life is not fair. Get over it. No need to adjust the rules for one or two outliners.

  29. “With all of the profits raked in by the universities, lining pockets, and otherwise redistributed to lesser sports, there certainly should be some set aside for trust funds for the top athletes who generate the ticket sales.”
    ——————————————–
    Trust funds? And ticket sales, I remember when Michigan was bad a few years ago for a stretch, yet they still had 110,000 people at each game. Same if Clemson didn’t have Lawrence. College football doesn’t need stars to stack the seats.

  30. Ok so let’s just let every HS player jump to the pros if he wants.
    The caveat being that if he jumps, he waives any right to legal action in the event he gets hurt because his body (and mind) aren’t mature enough to handle the pounding that players take at the pro level.
    So PFT is using this to make the NFL look bad. Surprise….NOT!
    Did Lawrence ever mention jumping to the pros? Nope.
    This is FAKE news manufactured to create content and profit for NBC et al.

  31. There is some truth to that argument. But how many college players have had one great season in college and then became a bust in the NFL. Especially at the QB position. Experience and playing time mean everything at that position. A 4 year starter at QB will be WAY more ahead of a one year phenom. 3 years should be the very minimum. I also disagree with star athletes that sit out their bowl games. They go to school on scholarships, all expenses paid and then don’t play in a bowl game. That should be part of the deal. If they refuse to play, then they should be forced to return the money that the college paid for them.

  32. Would he get drafted? Sure. But would he play? No. His body would not hold up to an NFL beating. He needs two more years to physically get where he needs to be. Plus, although Alabama is a good team, his two biggest plays came on a busted coverage and an injured CB that fell to the ground.

  33. He’s not ready for the NFL. It’s easy to look good when you have the best players on your team. While he looked good last night, NFL defenses will eat him alive. 6’5″ 205? He needs to put on another 30 Lbs and learn the game more.

  34. I love the argument anatomically underdeveloped players should be able to turn pro because they don’t want to argue to stop exploiting them during the development stage out of their own financial interests, and common folks make the same rationalization for entertainment value. Pay the players as a minor league system, or leave the age limit alone as better for player safety by only allowing developed players into the league. Plus, there’s a lot more HS to college and college to pro busts to justify letting underdeveloped players into the league watering down the talent pool

  35. I know, I’m totally ready to be a lawyer but licensure requirements make me stay 7 years schooling after high school. Worse for doctors.

  36. While I believe college football is a farce and should somehow separate itself from the academic institutions, the press needs to stop crowning these guys.

    I doubt Lawrence would make it in the NFL at this point. He still has a lot to learn. Lets see where he is in two years. I do think a developmental league that pays 18-22 year old while they mature physically, mentally and hone their craft would be more appropriate.

    Or we go back to the mythical national championship status and emphasize that a football scholarship is a free ride and demand much better academic performance from student athletes. I have to laugh thinking about that last sentence, it will never happen.

  37. Instead of looking at this as a negative, how about fact that he hasn’t reached his full potential yet and can get even better in the next 2 years. That’s pretty scary. He’s gonna be a great NFL quarterback.

  38. I think it’s an awesome rule. This kid will some day be worth $300 million at least, thanks to the NFL and the fans that enjoy it. In the mean time, he’ll help boost college football, which is the lifeblood of the NFL. College football helps pay the bills at a lot of our colleges. Trevor will be one of the all time greats, and he’ll be able to represent himself and his family a lot better with a college education, and 3 years on a college campus in the company of some of the greatest minds on earth. He’ll make a better husband and father with a college education. He’ll be a better ambassador for the NFL, and the college game. He’ll learn so many things that will make him a happier person. He’ll be way more well rounded, and realize the world doesn’t revolve around the gridiron. He’ll be in position to do something really amazing when he eventually retires from football. Talk to guys like Andrew Luck and John Elway about the benefits of a college education that go way beyond your ability to make money. Hey mom, can I quit school? Trevor Lawrence did.

  39. I agree that a 19-year old isn’t physically prepared for the NFL, but can we dispense with the hollow “they’re getting a free education” argument? For a potential #1 overall pick, the entirety of his college career could be paid for with one or two gamechecks.

  40. I really think 2 years is adequate. Scholarships are great, but a scholarship is worth about $100k a year TOPS. A first round pick is worth 20 times that in their first season.

    NFL players only have on average 3-10 years to make their money. Why stop them if theyre ready? Let them decide for themselves if their body is developed enough to take hits from adults.

  41. I don’t think he has made an issue of it, maybe he wants to stay at Clemson, maybe he’ll choose to stay for four years. But, if he wants, he can go up to Canada and play. They don’t pay as much as the NFL, but they do pay more than the NCAA. It’s his choice, not the sports reporters making an issue out of it.

  42. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am
    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.
    ————-
    I agree with your thought process, but the same argument could be made about buying beer, a gun in some states, etc. Life’s not always fair.

    I volunteered for the Army undestanding and knowing the rules and agreeing with your sentiment, just like these kids voluntarily go to play college sports. I’d happily trade my 3 spitting out desert sand for 3 years of life as a popular athlete on a college campus.

  43. Bill Bixby says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:11 am
    He may not be getting a pay check, but he is getting a free education and chance to get a degree. It may not be cash, but its worth tens of thousands a year. Im willing to bet he probably also lives and is treated like a God on campus. Again, not cash, but it counts for something.
    And the NFL should not take in guys out of high school. Their bodies are not going to be ready for the NFL yet.
    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    I get that and that is fine. What I don’t understand is why the player cannot sign endorsements, sell memorabilia, or profit from appearances. It’s one thing to say the college cannot pay the student more than tuition it’s entirely different to restrict the player from making income away from school.

  44. Let’s not proclaim him the next Tom Brady

    Not even Tom Brady thought he would be the next Tom Brady.

  45. Would it be fair to college programs to rob them of the talent that pays to recruit players, build stadiums and pays for educations? It’s not like the NFL is paying for college football. It is a ridiculous argument to believe colleges shouldn’t get to keep good players around for at least a couple years. By the time Lawrence is eligible for the draft, we might never hear about him again. What’s next? Complaint that a couple Middle school kids have to go to Hight school and how that isnt fair?

  46. If the NFL allowed players to skip, or even play only 1 year, it would require them to organize a Developmental league. They’ve not shown any interest in doing so. For now, the NCAA is the D league of the NFL and all parties (not necessarily athletes) are getting handsomely rich.

  47. Let me fix the lede…NFL/NFLPA Labor Rule prevent him from playing in NFL. Let’s also hold on. He’s played 2 really good games but no one was screaming about this rule in November when we 12 for 24 against Pitt or 21 for 38 against Duke or when we wasn’t even starting in the beginning of the year. He’s thrown some really nice balls the last 2 games but his receivers have bailed him out a ton. Let’s give him a full season before we worry about this. Further, he needs to get more accurate.

  48. I am really clueless on why this is even a story at all.. I mean if ur a sports fan and follow sports for well over 2 decades everybody knew he couldn’t enter the NFL draft as a freshman right out of college. Also everybody knows that u have to finish ur junior year of college football to enter the NFL draft. Unlike college basketball where u just have to play 1 year and enter the draft.

    So this story is really pointless to even be posted

  49. Trevor Lawrence isn’t being forced into anything. He just doesn’t meet a potential employer’s qualifications, yet. I hope he stays at Clemson. Oh, I’m a Bama fan.

  50. What people are missing is why they put the rule in in the first place. It was because, for every 19 year old kid who would give up his college eligibility to play in the NFL and who made it, you’d have hundreds who would not make it. so making a rash decision would hurt more kids than it would help. Sometimes it’s about maturity more than it is whether they can handle the physical aspects of the pro game, too.
    I get what people are saying. But to dismiss it as a stupid rule requires deeper thinking, in my opinion.
    At 19, most young guys are thinking about two things — money and girls (and it might be that girls is first). So they are more apt to make an impulsive decision that hurts them long-term.
    I’m not saying I totally agree with the rule, but I am saying I understand why it was put in place. And agents — who are supposed to be there to help the kids — are like sharks and we all know their main interest is themselves, not the kids.
    I also understand those who say the kids should get paid. One thing to remember though is that scholarships at a top university are nothing to sneeze at. They can be worth a lot of money. So the kids who have them do get some value in return by having their educations paid for or at least help in paying their tuition.
    I would be in favor of putting money into a scholarship fund for student athletes — but — that would add a lot more pressure on the coaches because they’d have to be cognizant of the fact that playing time equals money and things like that. It would open up a whole new can of worms for coaches to deal with.
    It’s a tough answer to cover all bases in this issue.

  51. On another note Lamar Jackson should have stayed at school longer you ever hear the way he talks. Highly doubt he learned anything in college so the system is definitely flawed but these kids should be staying in school the money will be their if they are nfl draft worthy plus the educations they receive from these big schools look just as good as being a professional football player where some of these guys only last a couple years you will always have ur degree

  52. “Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is ready for the NFL”? Says who? Lawrence is a true freshmen who hasn’t even started a full season yet, and already the sports media is griping about how “unfair” this is? Problem is, the sports media are the only ones complaining, which make this just another attempt by the media to create a problem where one doesn’t exist.

    If you really believe an NFL team would draft Lawrence in this coming April’s draft for the purpose of starting him in September, you need to find a new line of work. NFL teams want experience, and seldom if ever does that experience come in one college season, and NEVER in one’s freshman season alone.

    Lawrence had a great game last night, and a solid freshman season. That does NOT mean that he’s ready to start in the NFL next September, and if he’s not ready to start, how does he get ready? By starting for the best team in college football for the next two years.

    Good Lord, get a grip, and quit trying to create controversy where none exists. It’s no wonder media people are less popular than politicians.

  53. Both baseball and to a degree hockey are the true models to follow.

    The NFL should develop it’s own minor league outside of the NCAA. Even the NBA appears to be trying to develop players (even though only a few have seen any playing time in the NBA). Using the NCAA with its one and done is a complete joke (and really has ruined college basketball). But that’s about race so we can’t talk about it.

  54. The rules were created at a time when college athletics were a net drain on the budgets of most universities. College athletics have become a huge industry mooting the reason for the rules which are ludicrous. The Sherman and Clayton Acts forbid conspiracies intended to monopolize a relevant market (including prohibitions that exclude competitors). I doubt that an action by a single football player would work (though a modern Curt Flood might emerge) but a group of representative players could jointly file a class action lawsuit against the NFL, NCAA and NFLPA. The lawyers and representative players would likely become pariahs but discovery during the lawsuit of the financial maze during pre-trial would terrify the three organizations. I suspect a class action lawsuit (perhaps on behalf of all collegiate athletes) would probably cause the NFL and NFLPA to create a separate evaluative board that would determine if a given player is capable of playing professional football before the three year rule. In effect make the three year rule a rebuttable presumption. I suspect a class action lawsuit would also result in college athletes being paid a portion of the economic largess the major athletic programs are generating.

  55. I mean are we all trying to say that 18 and 19 year olds are ready for the NFL? With the current concussion issue and amount of injuries, that would only make the matter worse. I think the 3 year rule is perfect as is. As for collecting a check in college, I am all for that, they deserve to be paid. but getting hit by grown men… I think that can wait until they are 21-22.

  56. The talent is certainly there for Trevor, but if he were able to go pro now and play in the league this fall, he’d be lining up against defensive lineman in their 20s and 30s.

    He’d have one super short career facing guys much bigger and stronger than he currently is.

  57. Bill Bixby says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:11 am
    He may not be getting a pay check, but he is getting a free education and chance to get a degree. It may not be cash, but its worth tens of thousands a year. Im willing to bet he probably also lives and is treated like a God on campus. Again, not cash, but it counts for something.
    And the NFL should not take in guys out of high school. Their bodies are not going to be ready for the NFL yet.
    ——–
    Oh stop it. Benefits and perks don’t make up for potentially millions. People act like the NCAA is being all benevolent here. Every major corporation wishes they could cap their employees “pay” at something that doesn’t even guarantee you a job or great pay in the future rather than pay them what a free market would dictate they get paid. And just cause a school demands an outrageous amount for tuition doesn’t mean that’s how much the education is worth. I have 3 degrees. I’ve been to a state school where I only paid $1,000 per semester and a private school that cost $30,000 per semester. The instructors and education I received at the state school was every bit as good as the private school if not better.

    It’s rich to me that these schools spend millions building stadiums, paying coaches, building flashy dorms, paying celebrity professors who just do research and have teaching assistants do the teaching…. all these things that inflate tuition….Then turn to the student athletes and make them feel lucky to give up potential millions for a scholarship that covers said over inflated tuition. And the crazier thing is the public buys this nonsense.

  58. jacktatum32 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:50 am
    golions1 says:

    January 8, 2019 at 6:03 am

    They should pay major college football and basketball players.
    _____________________________________________________________________

    They do, they get a free education, free room and board, free food, free medical care, free workout facility including sports nutrition and trainer, free clothing
    ———————————————————————-
    And when the get hurt or injured, in MANY cases, they lose all of that…..

  59. Two very different issues at play. One is the NFL’s arbitrary rule of being out of high school 3 years, which no other professional sport has. Hockey is pretty tough and there have been many 19 year olds and younger playing the game without issue. Hockey, Baseball and NBA all have mechanisms to draft players young and if they aren’t ready, stash them them places where they don’t take up a roster spot. And for those that think they’re ready and enter the draft and don’t get drafted, it is their decision and they go play in Europe or Asia and make an ok living. For the superstars like Lebron James and Sydney Crosby, there will always be room. AQnd probably the same would have been the case for Herschel Walker and Bo Jackson. Trevor Lawrence would be drafted #1 and would start at some point in the upcoming year. He is physically far more imposing that Josh Rosen as an example.

    Second issue that everyone is bringing up is the lack of pay in the NCAA. Another huge issue that clearly needs some modification. I’m not going to pick a side and say pay all college football and basketball athletes or not. I understand the value and importance and cost of college education. That said, shouldn’t Trevor Lawrence at least be able to get sponsorship money for hosting a camp in the offseason? Or for his picture and name on a football card? Or get paid when he signs autographs at a convention? If Ford wants to put him in a commercial to sell vehicles in South Carolina, shouldn’t he get paid for that? At least if these situations were allowed, the top prospects with real earning potential could earn actual money and stay in school. It wouldn’t take away from any of the revenues that the colleges and NCAA depend on.

  60. There’s a lot wrapped up in this on both sides of the fence. The NCAA doesn’t want to lose its star players after one year, either, it’s not just the NFL (and NFLPA) behind this. I think the main issue is physical development. I think 18 & 19 year olds wouldn’t hold up to the physical demands.

    As others have said there are many benefits to staying in school. “NFL ready” doesn’t automatically mean “NFL success”, especially for a QB. The NFL is populated by players who played college football – a high level athlete can’t put themselves in a bubble and save themselves for some assumed financial windfall a few years down the road. He could get drafted #1 and get a career-ending injury in his first game – there are no guarantees about anything.

    The system is what it is and there’s so much money involved I doubt it will change any time soon. Two more years of college football and getting preferential treatment at Clemson aren’t going to be too tough for him.

  61. at this point, is there really much of a difference between taking hits from defenses in the SEC vs the NFL? sure, SOME of the LBs and DLs are 10lbs lighter or 10% “weaker” but does that mandate staying out of the league?
    I’d say, the biggest problem is that MOST kids who would skip college just are not ready but coming out for the money and will fail miserably. The lawyers / agents don’t really care about the athletes en masse and are only using them…. to many kids would be taken advantage of and thrown to the curb after they flame out. At least with 3 years of college they have a bit more maturity / ability to deal with life and maybe…. MAYBE a shot at doing something in the real world since most won’t make it in the league.
    I blame the lawyers

  62. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am

    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.

    ~~~~

    Originally I was thinking this rule is fair. Then I read your comment and it changed my opinion. This was spot on, you win the internet for the day.

  63. You do realize you are comparing apples to oranges. The government doesnt set the rules for the NFL. your better off saying we can play NBA at 18 but not NFl and that would compare.

    asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am
    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.

  64. sob617 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:45 am
    Staying at Clemson is not his only option. Alliance of American Football – join that and possibly become it’s biggest star; ditto CFL. Again there is injury risk but a pay check and possible endorsement money. Clemson is not his only option but it may be his best option. Choose wisely.
    —–
    Chosoe wisely? How can someone choose when the ability to choose is taken from them. If the NFL were to allow 18 year olds to enter the draft it would be their choice to enter and most importantly the teams’ choice to draft them. You and I are technically eligible to enter the NFL draft but that doesn’t mean a team will draft us. If a player isn’t ready for the league you would think teams that spend millions scouting players wouldn’t draft them regardless of age. This rule wasn’t put in place to help young athletes.

  65. No. No. No. No. No. He is not ready for the NFL. Not. He can light up the scoreboard, that’s for sure. He is not ready for the NFL.

    Think about yourself as a 19 year old and what if you were thrown to the wolves, at the highest level, of your profession (whatever it may be) and expected to produce? He is too young to play with grown men who are playing to provide for their families and themselves.

    This isn’t the NBA where you could easily play pickup with NBA players in the offseason and fit in. These guys are f-ing crazy ass killers. I don’t care if you are Tom Brady or Ndomukinh Suh – they all have to have a screw loose to play in the NFL.

  66. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am
    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.

    Yeah, but we shouldn’t send 18 year-olds to war, and we shouldn’t send 19 year-old pups to the NFL either. Don’t confuse a young football player’s physical maturity with mental maturity. Most NFL rookies aren’t mature enough as it is. The rule is there to make sure the NFL has men on the field, not boys. No 19 year-old is a man yet, period.

  67. He may not be getting a pay check, but he is getting a free education and chance to get a degree. It may not be cash, but its worth tens of thousands a year. Im willing to bet he probably also lives and is treated like a God on campus. Again, not cash, but it counts for something.
    And the NFL should not take in guys out of high school. Their bodies are not going to be ready for the NFL yet.
    —————————

    Fair enough; but that should be his choice, not forced labor, albeit with nice perks as you note.

  68. This is more of the Florio induced non-sense. Yes college football has a sweet deal in the multibillion dollar industry that has little to no labor cost. And everyone knows the rules. For every kid like Trevor Lawrence that has to stay another year in school there 20 kids that come out, to pursue their “dream” and end up busting out. AND this kid will be a great NFL star if he stays healthy. Stories like this bore me.

  69. All college athletes should get a stipend equal to what a comparable job or internship for their grade level would be. That is fair considering a football player would not exactly be able to take a job during their time in school.

    But the idea of paying them $100,000 a year to play, just because the school could potentially afford it is ridiculous. Just because college football is more profitable than college lacrosse does not mean the same injury risks do not apply.

    The NCAA and schools should get to work on the stipend plan immediately, but stop with this “paying” players nonsense. They don’t have to go to college at all if they don’t want to risk their body.

  70. youngstownbengalsfan says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:17 am
    These kids are getting valuable scholarships and experience as well as laying a foundation for an nfl career. Stop sobbing for them and encourage them to have fun playing college ball while they live up to their end of the deal.
    A big part of responsible adulthood is abiding by agreements. How about we encourage them to have enough character to put off going pro and abide by the agreement they have already made?
    ——-

    What agreement did he make that he was not FORCED to make? Reminds me of the scene in the Godfather where they hand the guy a contract and point a gun at his head and tell him “your brains or your signature are going on that contract”.

  71. The scholarship routine is stale. These kids are employees of the university. Unpaid employees. They make the coaches rich and the schools mega-rich. Their reward is a seat in class that costs the school next to nothing.

  72. OR, the fact that playing for Clemson, not only provides room, board, education, but allows him to showcase the skills that will make him Millions of dollars years from now is a huge privilege that does not exist for most young people. Thank you Clemson.

  73. jacktatum32 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:47 am
    Like just about every other 19 year old, Lawrence needs to stay in school and mature—maybe put on 20lbs-30lbs and fine tune his skills. Too many come out too soon (not in just football) then fizzle out in the NFL after 3 years
    =====

    It’s awesome that you think that, and you may even be right. If you have kids in that situation, you should absolutely have a say in that.

    But he’s not your kid and it’s not your business.

  74. ” If they want to be an officer they have to…(wait for it)…go to college.”

    I’m guessing you weren’t in the military, because lots of men become officers without college.

  75. “Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is ready for the NFL.”

    That’s a big statement based on one season of college ball. Sure he’d be drafted high, but that doesn’t necessarily mean his is “ready for the NFL”.

  76. Dustin Adams says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:44 am
    On the flip side, some job fields require one or more of the following: experience, degree, certification, apprenticeship.
    =====

    Cool. This isn’t one of them. No one coming out of high school has the skills to be a doctor. He has the skills to be a pro football player.

  77. What about the kid that did not get to go to Clemson because the spot was taken? What about the kid that has an unscrupulous agent tell him to come out and then is not drafted? Don’t we have enough bad decisions being made by NFL players without 19 year old kids under the microscope?

  78. All the guys commenting that he gets paid through tuition, room and board, etc. Y’all are comparing your personal talents to his. For YOU getting paid tuition, etc. would be excellent – cause you lack any usable skill that schools covet.

    Lawrence on the other hand is one of the most skilled young men in the entire world and getting “only’ College paid for in return for his skill-set is not a good trade for him.
    Maybe it was a good trade 40 or 50 years ago, when a free ride compared favorably financially to what pro salary was. But today, the free ride is a pittance compared to how much revenue the schools and NCAA make off the backs of star players, and how much the players can earn when they go pro. The Coaches and AD’s are making multi-million dollars per year off the players too.

    Put another way, would a junior salesman that brings in over $50M a year in revenue be happy earning $50-75k per year while being told you HAVE to keep working here because we are honing your skills??!! That would be nonsense. But the NCAA FORCES them to play. There is no other path to the NFL. The NCAA is a free minor league for the NFL. They make billions and comparably offer very little in return.

    Pay the players now!

  79. What happens if he leaves to make some money in the AAF or XFL before he tries for the NFL? Still would (probably) play and get experience. Or does the AAF & XFL have the same rules?

    P.S. If the AAF & XFL do not have the same rules, more and more college players will leave NCAA for money in the AAF/XFL.

  80. That’s what I want to see, physically and mentally underdeveloped kids come straight to the NFL and water it down just like the NBA. The 3 year rule is the saving grace of the NFL. Men come to the NFL, boys go to the NBA.

  81. exinsidetrader says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:49 am
    The NFL will only draft players that can play right away.

    He should sue to overturn this discriminatory rule designed to protect the exploitation of star players by colleges.

    ———–

    Because I bet no other college player has ever thought about finding a way around this rule. Maybe suing the NFL, where they can literally make up rules, enforce rules as they wish, and discipline players at will, will change their mind when they are sued.

  82. You mean he might have to actually go to class and earn an education? The Brady Quinns and Jamarcus Russells of the world need something to fall back on if the pro game doesn’t turn out as easy as they thought it would be and that money they thought they were entitled to only exists until they’re cut in two years and making league minimum if they’re in the league at all.

  83. “knowing that every single hit he takes could affect his future ability to play pro football and cost him millions of dollars.”

    Is he entitled to a future NFL star contract? He has every right to rest on his laurels and sit for two years, sticking to flag football until he is eligible for the NFL draft. Nobody is forcing him to keep playing college football.

  84. What about the AAF league in the Spring or the XFL in 2020< or would that just be unfair to those lesser quality football players, AKA NFL rejects?

  85. He IS getting paid. A free college education is worth at least 25K per year…plus the value of his education. I am tired of the whining about not getting paid to play college football when they are, indeed, paid.

  86. The college system is a sham. It has become a multi-million dollar operation for the NCAA, exploiting players who have no other options. How else can you explain the hypocrisy of allowing head coaches in these programs to leave for other jobs whenever one comes up, but forcing players to sit out for a year before they can go somewhere else. The head coaches are making millions of dollars, but the players are student-athletes? The schools sell jerseys with their numbers on them, but the players can be ruled ineligible if they sell their autographs? Free education sounds nice for us, but have you seen what the time expectations are for these players? Weightroom, film room, practice time. These players have a full-time job and then are expected to meet the school requirements of any other student. This is why so many of these guys take made-up classes (basket weaving 101) so they can properly focus on the real reason they are in school.

    The fact is that there is no incentive for anything to change. The NCAA is making millions off of free labour. The NFL is getting players who have spent at least 3 years preparing for the league, so are ready to contribute from day 1. The only one who can change this is the players, but they need to figure out another avenue to hone their skills before getting to the NFL. The CFL is not really an option, because it’s a very different game and it wouldn’t be great for preparing you for everyday NFL life. So I can’t see anything really driving a change.

    What would be nice is if the NCAA started to relax some of the rules for these players so they can profit a bit while they are in school. Why can’t someone like Trevor Lawrence charge for selling his autograph? Why couldn’t he auction off his jersey from the championship game? Simple changes can make it so that players are less inconvenienced by having to stay for 3 years.

  87. Look at the NBA. It is full of potentially good players with one year of college who fail. For every LeBron there are 40 players who come out and either do not make it, get 0 minutes or are just plain boring to watch (and pay for). The NBA rules on freshman have ruined the sport and damaged college ball. Either go to college or don’t but if you decide to go, stay there for at least 3 years and mature enough to be effective in the pro’s.

  88. Someone please correct me if I am wrong but isn’t that NFL rule bargained between the teams and the players that they have to be 3 years out of high school?

    I also would be careful saying a player is ready to go the NFL. College football is one thing but a 19 year old ready for the NFL is a whole different thing to say.

  89. This guy isn’t NFL ready. He’s a draft project QB at 19 years old. He would be drafted in the 4th to 6th rounds, make very little money in the next two years.

    OR

    He continues to play at a high level, gets drafted like the first round talent he projects to be, and gets a fat signing bonus that *should* set him for life.

    I feel so bad for him…. :eyeroll:

  90. Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is ready for the NFL.
    —————-
    Is he? Johnny Manziel was “ready for the NFL”. Robert Griffin was “ready for the NFL”. Blaine Gabbert, Jameis Winston, Josh Freeman, Mark Sanchez, Jake Locker were all “ready for the NFL”. Many people said Christian Hackenberg was NFL ready after his first year at Penn State. He regressed considerably, and has now washed out of the league. An NFL head coach said Nate Peterman was the most NFL-ready QB in his class. Lawrence may have the physical tools to play in the NFL, but he’s 19 and a freshman in college. The list of “ready for the NFL” quarterbacks that have failed is way too long to ignore and just label Lawrence as such after 1 year of college football.

    If he is NFL ready, he’ll get his chance. The contracts franchise QBs get today more than makes up for a few years of playing for “free”. And if he’s not NFL ready, he’ll leave Clemson without any student debt.

  91. In most fields, a young adult who’s good enough to do the job is free to shop his services to businesses willing to employ him.
    ______________________________

    When did corporations start hiring executives right out of high school? I must have missed that one. Sure, he’s free to shop his services to McDonalds.

  92. promickey says:
    January 8, 2019 at 7:26 am

    The NFL is over the top on this rule,especially in comparison to the National Basketball Association. That begs the question is there a legal option against the NFL for having a policy of age discrimination. Age is a protected class; So one should be able to play quarterback in the NFL and make millions as long as they have the ability. The legal age to be an adult in this country is eighteen (18). The NFL could be breaking the age discrimination laws by not allowing 19 year old Trevor Lawrence to make millions. It’s an NFL rule that could be considered discriminatory or against federal law. Lawyers should weigh in on this….

    ————

    Maurice Clarett sued the NFL over their 3 years removed from highschool rule over 15 years ago and initially won but lost on appeal.

  93. The article is short sighted. Lloyds of London has insurance that will cover his risk of future injury, I believe Eli Manning had a policy when he was in college. His full ride at Clemson is worth 200k at least, plus a valuable degree if he graduates.

  94. His value might not ever be this high again. Yes – he is still growing, but where does it say he has to start right away in the NFL?

    What happens if he has a career ending injury in college, and losses out on all the money he would be provided by being a 1st round draft pick and potentially having a boat load of endorsements for additional compensation?

    The rule should be 1 year out of high school and then eligible to enter draft. Kid looked lights out last night. I’m not saying he’s not capable of repeating and winning Heisman award(s), but currently, his stock is at it’s highest in a week QB class year.

  95. These kids are getting valuable scholarships and experience as well as laying a foundation for an nfl career. Stop sobbing for them and encourage them to have fun playing college ball while they live up to their end of the deal.
    A big part of responsible adulthood is abiding by agreements. How about we encourage them to have enough character to put off going pro and abide by the agreement they have already made?
    —————————————————————————————-

    This is stupid. Stop with the free education nonsense. At the Power 5 schools that rakes in hundreds of millions of dollars, pays for the new shiny Arts & Sciences buildings, the new business college buildings and helps to fund those expensive student internships around the world. Add to that the millions that college coaches make with the ability to quit their job for higher pay whenever they want….Stop it!

    This is not about an education its about business and the business is winning. People do not understand that these scholarships are 4 one year contracts the student athlete has to sign every year. The school could dump players that under perform but that would kill recruiting.The amount of time you split between, class, film, practice, treatment and performance is alot. And to just marginalize this and say they should shut up because they are getting a free education is disingenuous.

  96. These universities pay for injury or “loss of value” insurance for these guys out of the NCAA’s Student Assistance Fund. It’s $8000 per $1mm of coverage.

    Rules are rules. This kid is a child at 19 and not ready for the pros based on one great game. Should he get hurt his junior year and fall in the draft he’ll have coverage to make up a huge chunk of that lost money.

  97. I’ve said this for years. Allow kids to enroll in college as athletes, receive a stipend and pay their way through college. They can take useful classes to help prepare to be professional athletes while focusing on their sport of choice. Other students who want to play sports can enroll as a student, get a scholarship and focus on balancing both, while still having the opportunity to go pro if they want, while getting a degree.

  98. I am sure his insurance policy he has should he get hurt it going to set him up nicely.

    Even if he were allowed to play tomorrow, there are not guarantees he would be successful

  99. For at least the last 2 years, hasn’t the narrative been that education is not important? So basically, these scholatships aren’t worth the money that it costs to print the diplomas.

    Also, I’m glad the NFL is protecting these kids from losing draft status if they’re injured in college. Oh, wait…

  100. Its ok for baseball and hockey players but not basketball and football there are requirements that are mandatory. I wonder why that is…..

  101. Ready for the NFL? He would surely get drafted, but almost just as surely is not ready to play yet.

  102. The NFL is not making Trevor Lawrence stay at Clemson. They’re making Trevor Lawrence wait until he’s three years removed from high school before he can enter the NFL draft.

    It’s a good rule and a grown ass man’s game. Speaks to the quality of play produced by the NFL.

  103. Baseball and hockey don’t have those requirements because they are not revenue generating sports for the NCAA. The only reason basketball and football make you stay is they make money and the pro leagues want to keep the NCAA happy so they can continue to have access

  104. I am not a huge fan of rules – except when they make sense. This one does to me. There’s a lot of growth that happens in those years, both mentally and physically, not to mention skills. Unlike basketball, I just don’t see a 19-year old competing in today’s NFL. His stock is riding high right now because of an incredible season – and it was an incredible season. But we have to stop anointing people because of one season and one great game. Remember Mark Sanchez? Even his coach said he wasn’t ready, but everyone else extolled his virtues on a very small body of work. Look at him now.

    The kid should stay in school. Build that resume.

  105. Your take on this is getting tiresome because you refuse to look at it any way other than the NCAA exploiting these kids and the NFL holding them back. This kid may be a good QB but without the NCAA you would not know it. He is being compensated. How much would he stand to make in the NFL if he never played college ball? Closer to zero than millions. Your efforts to make your point seem better are laughable as well. “In most fields, a young adult who’s good enough to do the job is free to shop his services to businesses willing to employ him. In his chosen field, the only choice is to play for free in the NCAA for three years before playing for the NFL team that drafts him.” That first statement also applies to the NFL as they are unwilling to employ him until 3 years out of high school…much like any company is unwilling to employ someone without the requisite education and/or experience they want. Your second statement is completely false. He can turn pro if he wants. CFL is pro, the new leagues are pro as are whatever is left of the arena leagues. I usually enjoy MDS articles because he often talks about football rather than political topics masquerading as a football article but this one is complete garbage because it focuses on a stupid agenda.

  106. Good rule, the kid needs to bulk up and finish his education. He’ll be a solid pick in 2 years and be NFL ready. And I doubt he would get the same money now that he’ll get in 2 years, he would be too raw coming out now only as a freshman, NFL teams like to see more seasoned QBs with a couple of college seasons under their belt.

  107. So what’s wrong with that?
    If these kids were given a free ride through college on an athletic scholarship, then they should honor it for the entire 4 years.

    But they learn early that in this current world, their word doesn’t mean squat.

    No wonder the NFL if filled with whiny, entitled prima donna types who renege on their contracts and want to renegotiate them every year.

  108. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am
    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.

    Football is a crypto facist metaphor for nuclear war but that’s where the similarity ends. One is a duty to protect the lives of our citizens, the other a way to make millions playing a game. Besides, lettgin this kid into the league at this age nearly guarantees he’s going to be damaged, physically and emotionally.

  109. arzcardinals says:
    January 8, 2019 at 10:02 am
    He’s old enough to be drafted to kill and be killed, yet not old enough to get paid to play professional sports….that’s not right

    Hes also 4-5 years past a being able to legally drive a 4000lb vehicle/weapon. are we advocating 17 year olds in the NFL? You need to draw a line somewhere.

  110. Dustin Adams says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:44 am
    On the flip side, some job fields require one or more of the following: experience, degree, certification, apprenticeship.

    The military example doesn’t fly. Gambling and drinking require the person be at least 21. Many car rental agencies require a person to be 25. The military at 18 is essentially an entry-level job. Those who join at that age are called “enlisted personnel.” If they want to be an officer they have to…(wait for it)…go to college.

    //////////////

    Great points but you’re still not immune from bullets, and the NFL does not require one to graduate. If they were serious about having players mature we would see an 80% drop in gum popping and the number of “and ub

  111. Anyone ask the kid what he wants to do? He’s 19 – maybe he likes college and the atmosphere at Clemson? He just became a legendary BMOC – Let him enjoy that for a little while before he get thrown to the wolves in the NFL. Besides – we need him around for a few more years to drive Saban crazy!

  112. Dustin Adams says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:44 am
    On the flip side, some job fields require one or more of the following: experience, degree, certification, apprenticeship.

    The military example doesn’t fly. Gambling and drinking require the person be at least 21. Many car rental agencies require a person to be 25. The military at 18 is essentially an entry-level job. Those who join at that age are called “enlisted personnel.” If they want to be an officer they have to…(wait for it)…go to college.

    //////////////

    Great points but you’re still not immune from bullets, and the NFL does not require one to graduate. If they were serious about having players mature we would see an 80% drop in gum popping and the number of “and uttered during interviews.

  113. horrible rule. absolutely horrible waste of this kids time playing college football (unless of course, he WANTS to). he is already a top 10 QB in the NFL! He might be top 5! he is that good! i would take this guy over cousins right now! this rule needs to change. it is forcing young men to lose money by playing college football just so the ncaa can stuff their coffers. he is NOT a typical 19 year old kid. he is a huge athlete that just made the best college football athletes look silly. it’s a complete fallacy to say ‘well he’s too small, he’s just a kid, he can’t play a man’s sport!’

    FALSE! he just proved he is the best on the field in a game where a ton of those athletes he just beat down are going to be going pro in the spring.

    ‘oh he should put on more muscle!’ good grief! 19 year olds go to the NBA, MLB, and NHL every year!

    ‘he should stay in school and get a degree!’ absolutely should ONLY BE HIS CHOICE. if he wants to stay, go for it. if he thinks he is ready for the NFL, he should be allowed to leave! it’s his life!

    horrible rule. CHANGE IT!

  114. daramsman says: “This is stupid. Stop with the free education nonsense. At the Power 5 schools that rakes in hundreds of millions of dollars”
    ================================

    College football rakes in “hundreds of millions of dollars” because of the school, not the athlete. You can substitute every Clemson player with guys from the Albany Empire arena football team and alumni will still watch every single game.

    For the student-athlete, he’s getting more than just a free education. He gets weekly national exposure to showcase his talent as well as high quality coaching than transforms his raw, high-school talent into NFL-caliber skills.

  115. For those that believe 18 year olds are ready for pro sports, including baseball, just google David Clyde, Texas Rangers. 18 yo baseball players drafted out of HS typically go to the Minors for some years.

  116. Make it a requirement that his college pay for an insurance policy that pays him out big if he suffers a career-ending injury, shorten the college requirements by a year, and allow him to be signed to endorsements. Problem solved.

  117. He’d be broken like a twig if he played in the NFL next year. He needs to put on 20-25 lbs of muscle and learn not to take a hit….or he’s just going to be the next Wentz.

  118. Oh, boo hoo. The kid is being forced to be big man on campus for another couple years. Don’t you feel so bad for him. Such a raw deal… Life must suck!

    Please…

  119. So what?! It’s the rules. Just because every 10 years or so there’s a unicorn out there who might be able to make the jump early, doesn’t mean the NFL should change their rules. Think of all the players who “think” they’re ready, or their agent pushes them to leave school early….and they’re not ready and ruin any chance of a career. And now they can’t go back to school for free.

    Leave it.

  120. READY for the NFL? Who says? Prolly the same dolts who crowned Johnny Football the Heir to the league… how did that work out? Stay in college kid. Life is good there.

  121. derp363 says:
    January 8, 2019 at 10:46 am

    horrible rule. absolutely horrible waste of this kids time playing college football (unless of course, he WANTS to). he is already a top 10 QB in the NFL! He might be top 5! he is that good! i would take this guy over cousins right now! this rule needs to change. it is forcing young men to lose money by playing college football just so the ncaa can stuff their coffers. he is NOT a typical 19 year old kid. he is a huge athlete that just made the best college football athletes look silly. it’s a complete fallacy to say ‘well he’s too small, he’s just a kid, he can’t play a man’s sport!’

    FALSE! he just proved he is the best on the field in a game where a ton of those athletes he just beat down are going to be going pro in the spring.

    ‘oh he should put on more muscle!’ good grief! 19 year olds go to the NBA, MLB, and NHL every year!

    ‘he should stay in school and get a degree!’ absolutely should ONLY BE HIS CHOICE. if he wants to stay, go for it. if he thinks he is ready for the NFL, he should be allowed to leave! it’s his life!

    horrible rule. CHANGE IT!

    —–

    Yes, he should put on more muscle. You know why? Because physically, kids aren’t ready for the NFL.

    Physically he needs to get stronger. Are you concerned about his safety? NOPE.

    He’s TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN POUNDS and 6’7″

    Let that sink in when a 300+lb man is smashing him.

    You cite NBA, NHL, and MLB… they aren’t physical games like NFL. They is at times physicality, but if you get more hitting in 1 NFL game than a season of all the other sports.

    Someone needs a reality check, because physically he isn’t ready. Almost NO college player at 19 is ready for the NFL.

    NFL is far more physical and dangerous than college football.

    He’s losing money? Not really. In the long run not being destroyed before physically being ready might turn a 4 year career into a 15 year career.

  122. Oh and by the way, my team owns the #1 pick, so… me saying he should stay is putting my fandom where my mouth is. Because yes, the year he comes out, if Rosen isn’t ready, this would likely be the guy I want.

  123. The headline is factually inaccurate. – “NFL rules force Trevor Lawrence to stay two more years at Clemson”

    Trevor Lawrence is neither required to stay at Clemson, nor to do so for two more years. Heck, ther’s no requirement that he play in the NFL, nor ever allow himself to be subjected to their rules.

    NFL rules simply state that he must be three years removed from High School before he can apply to the NFL. Those rules don’t affect his ability to “go pro” anywhere but in the NFL.

    Sloppy work once again, from a biased source who fails to understand that the “NFL Rule” is part of the CBA, and thus AGREED to by Owner and Player representatives alike. Your “raw deal” lays blame only at the NFL’s doorstep and not the NFLPA…what a shock.

  124. Yeah – let’s see a bunch more Mike Williams and Maurice Clarett’s of the world in the NFL.

    It is difficult enough to scout players that have a full body of college work, let only one possible fluky year. Just because one player might be good enough to go the NFL early, does not mean that the hundreds of other players that year are as well.

  125. They Get education. Not just a degree but controlled environment to mature. So you think he can trust agents? Train with people that are only interested in getting part of his pay checks. Remember there is nothing free in this world one way or another it will cost you. So why not get educated bye the people that are not trying to get in your pockets but are more concerned about you brains and maturity not just your athletic skills.Let them enjoy the life of being student athlete get used to stress of that alone. Because when they turn pro everyone is going to want a piece of them coming from every direction.

  126. For the one or two exceptions every 20 years it helps….it would ruin dozens of young men’s careers before they get started. If the kid is this good, then he has plenty of years to play and make millions. Leave it alone.

  127. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am

    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football
    __________________________________________________________________________________________

    This guy nailed it!

  128. The NCAA is a good ole boys club that exploits children for millions while giving said children pennies in return.

    The NFL simply reinforces that good ole boys club with the rule. They, the NFL, are protecting their farm system.

  129. The injury argument is interesting – i.e. what if he gets injured in the next 2 years? – but that works for every college player. Do you see how many kids in uniform run out on the field for big programs like Alabama or Clemson? Of course most of them aren’t on scholarships, but there are plenty of backups waiting to take the field to prove what they can do.

    There are talented players every year whose NFL dreams end because of injury. Hell, not just NFL dreams, but college football dreams, too. I knew a guy once who was a scholarship WR for Alabama in the 80s…until he blew out his knee. These kids are left with no education and a bunch of medical expenses because the universities try to weasel out of paying for treatment.

  130. Typical bs….tell all of us whp had to pay to go to college what a raw deal they get…..or all of those sports that do not generate a profit what a raw deal it is that they get funded by those sports that actually do generate revenue. And for all those “just pay the players” what system do you use for the small schools that don’t make a profit? People focus on the big schools and ignore that elephant in the room. You would basically legalize paying players to attend big schools. They get their schooling, they get room and board and Per Diem and spending money, all every other student has to fend for themselves to get the same education. They are already getting paid.

  131. Dillon Pauls says:

    I’m not sure why some professional sports just don’t let younger kids enter the draft. If the NFL is a business, then doesn’t anybody have the right to compete in the NFL straight out of high school if their proven to be good enough?

    ———————————

    You do not have a right to a job with the NFL anymore than Lawrence does.

    The NFL has the right to make the rules as to who is and isn’t a suitable candidate for employment. if they wish to say that players must have a degree, they can. If they wish to say three years out of high school, they can. If they wish to say you need a mechanical engineering degree they can.

  132. Yup, because the life skills and education that he gains while staying in college won’t benefit him at all.

    Life is more than the next several years in a football uniform

    Take some business admin classes – learn to invest in your brand.
    Too many young stars lose their money, not only on spending sprees but by making poor business decisions and bad investments.

    Learn how to live in the spotlight and build a brand that will survive longer than your NFL career.

    Unpopular thought process – but it is the correct thing to do.
    For every LeBron – there is a Kwame Brown, Eddy Curry, Jonathan Bender or Darius Miles

  133. “No need to adjust the rules for one or two outliers”.
    _______________

    The issue is why have a rule in the first place? If everyone who is so concerned about what will happen to 19 year olds in the NFL is correct the league will only be drafting the outliers. Therefore there is no need for an unnecessary rule.

  134. Jeepers – see all these kids including cant miss Heisman guys – look at recently Manzel etc etc. This kid looks to be smart – Play your full college career – dont declare early – earn your degree and whatever else you want to do = 4 straight national champs heismans etc and then maybe just maybe you might be the next – wonderkid

  135. The XFL would likely allow him to play, if he’d like to start earning money early. He could become the fresh new face of the league, and ultimately decide against the NFL altogether.

  136. I agree that Trevor Lawrence had a great game and a very productive freshman season, but let’s not forget that another Clemson freshman, Justyn Ross, had a fabulous game and was a significant part of Lawrence’s success last night. Justyn made several circus catches of 50/50 balls and took a short pass 74 yards for a touchdown.

  137. Jonathan Martin wasn’t mentally ready for the NFL, and you want 18 and 19 year olds in the NFL?

    As for paying these kids. Give me a break. They get a free education, girls/women and have the best weed on campus.

  138. I thought being in college was about education which I’m sure is free for him. At 19 he’s not physically developed yet either.

  139. The “rule” is collectively bargained with the Players Association and the NFL. In other words, it protects the jobs of its membership. No suit will prevail in Federal court as long as the League and the union agree. Clarett tried it and lost.

    For those of you who say Lawrence should sit out, two years of no game tape is not conducive to becoming a high draft pick. He’ll just need to go purchase insurance and keep plugging for two more seasons.

  140. He’s not the only one who has to stay 3 years. The rule applies for everyone and it should be this way in the NBA! I’m sick of seeing children come into grown man leagues with no basic fundamentals. In the NBA, they cannot shoot, play defense, or hit free throws, yet they’re getting paid as pros.

    What happens if a 19 year old wants to quit college to become a judge, lawyer or doctor? They can’t. And there’s a reason doctors have residency for 4 years and lawyers clerk first. What’s the hurry!? So agents and family can take their money? Pump your brakes!

  141. Lawrence producing this year does not IN ANY WAY mean that he’s ready for the NFL, either on or off the field. He could be (this is only hypothetical, I don’t know him) not mature enough to handle the everyday lifestyle and work requirements of being a pro; even responsible 19 year olds often aren’t ready for big demands. As for on the field, don’t dare compare college football to NFL football. There is a ready Watson (cited in this article) was considered to be unpolished and many predicted he would be a bust. HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN THAT? Lawrence now might have the physical skills, but if he entered the league and struggled reading NFL coverages or dealing with NFL pass rushes, he might be “damaged” to the point of ruining his career. And sure, that might not be true – he might handle it all great – but the risk isn’t worth it. He’ll benefit just fine from the free education and non-football-career/networking status (the most ignored HUGE benefit that college football players receive in return for playing a game) he’ll build up, and then his pro time will come.

  142. Bottom Line: the NFL has to protect its de facto Farm League: NCAA football. The school’s start losing talent too soon and the Sport that pays for all of the other sports in colleges won’t be as profitable.

  143. At 6’5″ and 205 lbs., he must stay in college for a few years just to fill out his body a bit. He is built like an elite HS player, but is far from NFL-caliber build yet. He would get torn in half.

  144. The kid is really gonna be good. When I was a freshman I was trying to drink 12 Natural Lights and a 5th of Mad Dog 20/20 without puking.

  145. redlikethepig says:
    January 8, 2019 at 8:58 am
    The scholarship routine is stale. These kids are employees of the university. Unpaid employees. They make the coaches rich and the schools mega-rich. Their reward is a seat in class that costs the school next to nothing.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++
    Yes those kids are employees of schools they normally wouldn’t get into if it wasn’t’ for sport.

  146. No one has said he can’t play pro ball or “shope his services”. He’s free to go into the CFL or any one of the 3 new leagues coming out this year.

  147. Not fair? I’m sure the kid has a full scholarship and free ride. Straight from Clemon’s website.

    Nonresident Full Time (per year)
    Tuition and fees* — $37,128
    Room and board — $10,832 (approximate)
    Books and supplies — $1,392 (approximate)
    Total — $49,352

    Not only that, I’m sure they threw in some other incentives, which nets him more than $50k worth of ‘free’ education per year…over $150k in his 3 years. He also probably lives on campus like a god, gets a pass in class, unlimited gym usage, access to training staff, medical needs, etc.

    So with that said, I don’t believe the kid is getting the short end of the stick on anything. Could he get more out of it? Absolutely but he’s not playing for “nothing” like everyone makes it seem.

  148. The NFL is making soooo much money. I think they know what they’re doing. If suddenly their greatest players were unable to put together a sentence using (somewhat) proper grammar, a lot of the TV’s around the country would be turning off. NFL QB’s probably spend more time sitting in a classroom, studying film and such, than they spend on the practice field. The NFL doesn’t need more guys becoming broke 3 years after they retire due to lack of education. 99% of these kids benefit from spending at least 3 years on a college campus. Young kids with lots of money are going to attract a lot of “friends” who can help “invest” their money for them. It also gives these kids 3 or 4 years to form new relationships, and possibly a future wife while they’re still in school. The last thing anyone should want to do to a kid is take their college education experience away from them. They can have all the money in the world and they’ll never be able to get those years back.

  149. One and done has completely hollowed out college basketball, and many of the kids who leave after one year don’t get drafted, and then they are screwed because they can’t go back to play in college.

    In any case, it’s not an “NFL Rule”, it’s a contract issue collectively bargained with the NFLPA. The league can’t change it if they wanted to, without negotiating it with the union.

    Any why would the union agree to change it? They represent current players, not future players. What possible benefit is it to the membership to change this?

  150. asixthlombardiforthehaters says:
    January 8, 2019 at 6:04 am
    Ridiculous. We can send 18 year olds to war, but a 19 year old can’t play professional football.
    ——————————
    Nonsense. I volunteered to join the Marines. He chose to play football in college. There are lower and upper age restrictions to join the military. So what’s wrong with a business putting one on potential employees? WE don’t send anyone to war, that’s the purview of Congress and the President of the United States. I’ve never received a warning order from asixthlombardiforthehaters stating that I needed to prepare for a possible deployment. I’d prefer people to not compare military service to a private sector endeavor.

  151. Look, it doesn’t matter if the kid isn’t ready. It should be his choice. There are juniors every year who declare for the draft and go undrafted. They weren’t ready but were allowed to go. If a team doesn’t think a kid is ready, they don’t have to draft him. There’s no doubt some value in a college education, but again, it should be the player’s choice whether to accept a free education for more training, or decide he’s trained enough and go out on his own. Now, I think it’s better for the fans and the league if kids aren’t allowed to go early, because I think more would go than are ready, but if we are talking strictly about what’s right and wrong, a person ought to be able to determine for himself when he is ready to apply for a job, even if he’s wrong.

  152. I don’t buy the ’19 is too young for the NFL’ argument. Tremaine Edmunds was drafted 16th at 19, turned 20 in the offseason, and started at middle linebacker for the Bills – and had a fine year, with a very promising outlook.

    While there are other arguments to be made why underclass players should or should not be allowed into the NFL, Trevor Lawrence at 6’5″, 210 will easily put on 10-15 lbs over the next 12-18 months and that puts him right at the prototypical NFL QB size (e.g. Brady and Rogers at 225).

  153. This was an agreed upon rule between the NFL and the players union. There are many high schoolers with giant egos that would think they are NFL ready out of high school. For every Trevor Lawrence, there would be several dozen kids eaxh year whose lives would be damaged because they are not ready physically or mentally for the NFL. Even if Lawrence is physically big enough – is he mentally able to handle the NFL where many great college quarterbacks have failed miserably?

  154. Since when does one game mean a guy is Tom Brady? You might think a true freshman is ready to lead a pro franchise today, but I doubt many NFL GMs would agree. If Lawrence had been red-shirted and only had one year of eligibility left, I might give some credence to your argument. But this is ludicrous.

  155. Love the rule, I would not want the NFL to turn into the NBA where On the Job training is the rule. Young adults in a league they are not ready for isn’t good for the league. Paying a player 1st round money on their potential hasn’t been working in the NBA.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!