Justyn Ross has a lot to prove ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft

2022 NFL Draft prospect, Justyn Ross (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)
2022 NFL Draft prospect, Justyn Ross (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images) /

The 2022 NFL Draft process has begun and many eyes will be in Clemson, South Carolina this upcoming fall. The Clemson Tigers have been a football factory for some time now and the latest prospect everyone is talking about is Justyn Ross. The soon-to-be senior WR has been good at Clemson in his two years accumulating 1,865 receiving yards and 17 TDs in 28 games at Clemson.

Despite entering his fourth season, Ross has only played two seasons after missing the entire 2020 season due to surgery on a stinger issue in his shoulder. The biggest question around Justyn Ross this fall will be, can he solidify himself as a first-round pick for the 2022 NFL Draft?

While his stats overall in 28 games are solid, he has regressed over time. His freshman year he accumulated 1,000 receiving yards for 9 TDs. Then in his sophomore year, his stats dropped to 865 yards for 8 TDs. Perhaps the more notable concern was Ross’s yards per catch. In Ross’s freshman year, he averaged 21.7 yards per catch. His yards per catch dropped 8.6 yards each catch to 13.1.

Another concern for Ross is the aforementioned stinger injury. Symptoms of a stinger injury are described by OrthoInfo as, “a burning or electric shock sensation, Arm numbness and weakness immediately following the injury, A warm sensation.” These symptoms could last anywhere from seconds to days or longer. Patients are supposed to make a full recovery from the surgery. However, it would not be a surprise if a lot of Ross’s stock could ride on his medicals.

As a player overall, Ross shows clear strengths. The Draft Network’s Joe Marino describes Ross as a physical player.

"Thick, physical frame and he plays to his size. Has excellent play strength and it shows up when he’s challenged with contact as a route runner or with the ball in his hands. Thrives in a possession-style role where he showcases the ability to uncover quickly, position his frame and present himself to the quarterback. Has some impressive grabs on film where he plucks the football away from his frame and holds on through contact.-Joe Marino, The Draft Network"

While Ross has shown great physical skills at Clemson, Joe Marino describes clear concerns about the Tiger’s WR.

"Modest get off, agility and lateral quickness. Speed is gradual. Route tempo and urgency is often lacking. Only an average separator and he doesn’t quickly stack corners, especially when he’s not afforded a runway against off coverage. Late separation against sticky corners is a struggle. Guilty of too many drops, which are especially frustrating because of the high level flashes he illustrates firmly plucking the football through contact.-Joe Marino, The Draft Network"

Looking at his entire body of work, Justyn Ross has shown some incredible moments at Clemson. In maybe his most memorable collegiate performance, Ross posted 6 catches for 153 yards and a TD against Alabama in the National Championship in the 2018 College Football season. After his coming out party against Bama in 2018, Ross has shown flashes of being a first-round wide receiver but still has a lot to prove this upcoming season.

If Ross can clear his medicals and have a productive season at Clemson, where he demonstrates improvements in his game, he has a chance to secure himself as a first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.