Blog Entry

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

Posted on: January 7, 2011 12:47 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli

Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt made the announcement that he was going to forgo his senior season in Madison to enter the NFL Draft on Thursday, and now the word out of Wisconsin is that the odds are running back John Clay is going to follow him.  Clay hasn't made a final decision yet, but is meeting with Wisconsin staff to discuss his options this week.

Options that, when you think about Clay's situation, would make you think he's going pro.  Clay may only be a junior, but he's also 23 years old.  Given the shelf life of running backs in the NFL, it's best not to wait any longer than you have to.  Plus, there's the fact that Clay is not only a 23-year old running back, but that he's a 23-year old running back at Wisconsin.

Clay already spent the last year battling injuries, and lost a lot of carries to guys like Montee Ball and James White this season.  By returning for another season, he not only risks losing more carries to those fresher sets of legs, but also more injuries, and in turn, a lower draft stock.  If Clay does end up deciding to leave Wisconsin, he'll do so with 3,413 yards and 41 touchdowns to his name.  He was also the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year in 2009.

Wisconsin wouldn't be in bad shape without him, either.  Although they'd be losing their human battering ram, as I said above, the team would still have Montee Ball and James White.  Those two combined to rush for 2,048 yards and 32 touchdowns in 2010.

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 22, 2011 10:01 am

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

I may may state level, you'll picked your terminology good. The info people bought are probably the proper way positioned.

Since: Nov 3, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2011 4:02 pm

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

It's hard to think of Clay as anything better than a 3rd round choice.  I wish him well but he has three strikes against him.  Injuries, Ron Dayne and his age.

Since: Nov 28, 2007
Posted on: January 7, 2011 3:44 pm

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

He should go pro, he's the next Ron Dayne!

Since: Dec 10, 2008
Posted on: January 7, 2011 2:47 pm

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

Rbs dont last very long like they used to in the nfl and after a 5 year Run you will be pair up with another back and soon the carries will decline....remember when barber was running over people in dallas now hes 3rd string and will probably be gone next season, look at alot of these big backs. the wear and tear will hurt down the road, an exrta year in college is not need as much as say a qb looking to make the jump.

Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2011 1:32 pm

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

I don't see his draft stock getting any higher next year so it would be smart for him to enter the draft.  I feel bad for any team that has to play Wisconsin next year and deal with Montee Ball, James White, and Melvin Gordon.

Since: Nov 17, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2011 12:59 pm

John Clay leaning towards the NFL

Clay has no doubt learned from the travails of Ron Dayne, Ricky Williams, and Cedric Benson.  Added wear and tear can kill your pro career.  Thats why Barry Sanders, Emmitt Smith prospered - Barry Sanders played only 2 years (in 86 and 88 around Thurman Thomas) as OK state's feature back, and Emmitt stayed only 3 years. Walter Payton prospered in the pros because he was playing against lighterweight D1-AA defensive players in the years when many of the top black recruits left the SWAC and began playing in the SEC. 

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