Clemson Football: Ryan Carter looks to impress at Pro Day


The NFL Draft Combine in Indianapolis, IN wrapped up on Mar. 5 and five former Clemson football players got their chance to shine in front of NFL personnel but not among them was senior cornerback Ryan Carter. 

As the NFL issued invitations for the Combine, Taylor Hearn, Deon Cain, Ray-Ray McCloud, Dorian O’Daniel and Van Smith waited patiently and got invites and as a group, they performed well.

Now the quintet is back to training for the pros and possibly for the Clemson Pro Day. I don’t know how many will participate in the Pro Day which takes place at 8 a.m. tomorrow, but Ryan Carter is expected to run and participate in all the drills.

He didn’t get the invite to Indianapolis, but that disappointment hasn’t stopped his drive to be in the NFL. Carter has been training in Miami since Jan. 5 with Evan Byers, trainer and owner of the DAwG HOUsE Performance Center, and Byers likes what he sees in the former Clemson football star.

“Ryan has looked great during the training. His work ethic and maturation has made him an easy player to train.”

In his final season, Carter was an honorable mention All-ACC selection with 10 pass break-ups, three interceptions and a touchdown, a successful year, and that didn’t surprise Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney.

In a 2017 interview with The Clemson Insider, he said after watching the former two-star prospect’s Grayson High(GA) highlights, “This guy is a baller, this guy can play.”

During that interview, Swinney also said, “He’s as good a player as we got. I told the pro scouts that too. He’s not that sexy, he’s not going to walk up and you go, wow, you must be the starting cornerback at Clemson,” he continued. “They’re never gonna think that about him. But put the pads on and you’ll notice it.”

Swinney is right. When he has the pads on, it’s hard to ignore his skills. For the past two years, he has been a lockdown corner who defends the pass well and is an excellent tackler. His height(5-foot-9) is the only thing that kept him from being a four-star prospect and it probably kept him from being invited to the Combine.

On Thursday, Carter will get his chance to perform in front of some of those same coaches and GMs, and Byers, who also trained former Clemson corner Mackensie Alexander, thinks he will do well.

“He is one of the quickest if not the quickest player in the nation, and he will impress on Pro Day.”

Carter can’t change his height, but if he runs well in the 40-yard dash, that time could definitely raise his stock in April’s draft.

Next: Spring Practice Analysis: 3 Observations

But regardless of what he does tomorrow, this kid is a baller and like some NFL analyst and scouts generally state about some prospects, “The tape don’t lie.” And that alone will have several teams thinking about giving Carter an opportunity in the NFL just like it made Swinney give him a chance at Clemson.