Comparing Clemson football WR room to previous seasons
The Tigers have become known as ‘WRU’ because of the amount of talent that we continuously see at the position and that title can certainly be seen in the NFL currently.
As we prepare for the 2020 season, Rubbing the Rock will be giving you a breakdown of every positional unit compared to its previous counterparts in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Let’s continue the series by taking a look at the wide receiver rooms.
Year-by-year comparison of the Clemson football WR rooms
2017 WR Room
The 2017 wide receiver room was in a bit of a ‘turnover’ situation. The Tigers were replacing Mike Williams and Artavis Scott from one of the deeper wide receiver units from a year ago. Hunter Renfrow, a junior, was one of the leading returners, along with Deon Cain and Ray-Ray McCloud.
Freshmen Tee Higgins and Amari Rodgers would also make an impact and there was clearly plenty of depth and talent as the season progressed. Cain was lost at times because of the Tigers’ lack-of-ability to throw the vertical ball a ton and Renfrow was relied upon quite a bit to get the job done in the underneath game.
2018 WR Room
The 2018 wide receiver room had all the depth and talent you really could look for, despite losing Cain and McCloud to the draft.
The Tigers returned Tee Higgins and Hunter Renfrow as starters, as well as Amari Rodgers who was stepping into McCloud’s role. In addition to those key returners, Clemson added two talented freshmen by the names of Justyn Ross and Derion Kendrick to the mix.
Ross would become a major impact player as his freshman campaign progressed, ultimately leading to his breakout performance against Alabama in the National Championship victory.
2019 WR Room
The 2019 wide receiver room returned Tee Higgins and Justyn Ross as talented players on the outside, but the Tigers suffered the loss of Hunter Renfrow and Amari Rodgers was injured during spring practice. Though Rodgers returned and made some plays during the 2019 Clemson football season, it never seemed he was fully involved in the offense.
2020 WR Room
This year’s wide receiver room certainly has its question marks, but no one can deny the talent.
The Tigers return Amari Rodgers, but will be without Justyn Ross who had surgery on his spine. Tee Higgins is also gone.
Rodgers, Ladson Jr. and Ngata, especially, as well as Cornell Powell, will be called upon to get the job done. The Tigers also have a talented true-freshman in 4-star WR EJ Williams to throw into the mix.
Ranking the Clemson football WR rooms
- 2018 WR Room
- 2019 WR Room
- 2017 WR Room
- 2020 WR Room
The talent is there, but simply because of depth issues and questions, we have the 2020 WR room ranked last between the other positional units from years past.
The 2018 and 2019 group were clearly heads-and-shoulders better simply because of the vast amount of depth they possessed and the 2017 group is currently ranked higher because they returned a bit more experience than this year’s group.
That doesn’t mean that the 2020 group will be a major falloff, though. I fully expect Tyler Grisham to have this WR room ready to go and for us to see them ascend up the board and prove to be just as talented and effective as the wide receiver have been for quite some time in this program.