by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of The State.
The NFL Draft talk never ends, and we here at Draft 412 will keep you ready for the next set of gridiron stars. From today until draft night 2024 we will bring you mocks, profiles, team needs, and everything else related to the 2024 NFL Draft.
Today’s Spotlight - Clemson, Running Back, Will Shipley
Name- Will Shipley
HT/WT- 5’11” 205 lbs.
Home – Weddington, NC
Will Shipley had an excellent high school career at Weddington High School in North Carolina, amassing 4,173 yards and adding 1,411 yards receiving with 80 total touchdowns during his time in school.
As a freshman at Clemson in 2021, Shipley was named the starting running back in week 3. He rushed for 739 yards on 149 carries (5.0 avg) with 11 TD’s, and hauled in 16 receptions for 116 yards.
Last season, Shipley became the focal point of the Tigers offense and ran for 1,182 yards on 210 carries (5.6 avg) and caught 38 passes for 242 yards. Shipley also led the team with 15 touchdowns.
Shipley is a pure pass catcher who can be used in a variety of ways on offense. He does a good job of using his hands and quickly turning upfield after making a catch and has no problems catching the ball and creating space between him and the defenders. He has a way of stopping and starting while hitting full acceleration that takes the defenders by surprise. He’s got good field vision with quick feet and high-end straight ahead speed. He’s tough to tackle in the open field, and has above average cut back ability.
To be fair, Shipley does most of his work in space or on the perimeter, and will not be a running back consistently beating a team inside the tackles. Clemson uses Shipley in their sweeps and screen game and he will excel at this in the pros.
Shipley has a lean build for a running back and will struggle in short yardage situations at the next level. He is not a power runner and will struggle breaking tackles in the NFL with his upright running style.
Shipley can be a multi-dimensional weapon in the NFL in the mold of a Giovani Bernard—one who can hurt you more with receptions than running the ball.
Vision and balance
Good in space
Lacks a running back build
Cannot run inside the tackles
Lacks top line speed/ breakaway ability
Will Shipley, if used correctly, could bring a potential playmaker to an offense. He should become a prized 3rd down back who can spot starters by carrying the ball on a weekly pitch count.
Prediction- 3rd/4th round pick