Quarterback DeShaun Watson put together a huge fourth quarter on Monday night and Clemson sprung the big upset of Alabama in the 2017 national title game. Clemson was a 6.5-point underdog entering the game. They were trailing entering the fourth quarter, and Nick Saban was 97-0 when leading a game in the fourth quarter. Combine that all together and while Clemson claims it was not an upset, it was.
Watson is getting all the buzz after the game, as he finished the game 36 of 56 for 420 yards and three touchdowns, and also rushed for 43 yards and a touchdown. Watson is competing with Mitch Trubisky and DeShone Kizer to be the first quarterback off the board in the 2017 NFL Draft. This was only one game to be considered amidst his whole body of work, but it will weigh on plenty of people’s minds.
There was some concern about Watson throughout this season as many viewed him as taking a step back after entering the season with high expectations. He had plenty of good and bad in the semifinals against Ohio State, with three total touchdowns, but two interceptions. But his performance on Monday, particularly in the fourth quarter is going to be the first thing people think of as the draft approaches.
Watson has been invited to the 2017 Senior Bowl, but said he will wait until after the title game to decide. If he does he play, he is expected to play on the South squad coached by Hue Jackson’s Cleveland Browns coaching staff. The Browns are picking No. 1 and No. 12 and have a big need for a quarterback. Mitch Trubisky has been on the radar for them, but maybe Watson gets people excited. Could someone decide he’s worth a move up to No. 1 after this performance? Or will they hold steady and see if he slips?