The Pacific Pro league – which will debut in 2020 – wants Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence – the projected #1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL draft – to be its Joe Namath; of course, the University of Alabama star left school early to join the New York Jets and be the face of the start-up AFL, back in 1964.
While NFL rules prohibit players from entering the draft until 3 years after from H.S. graduation, Pac-Pro league founder Don Yee said his league “would like to make [the CFP National Championship MVP] an employment offer [and] professionalize him right away”; to date, elite underclassman have lacked an alternative to the NCAA.
Yee – who is also Tom Brady’s agent – insinuated that Adidas (a founding sponsor of the Pac-Pro league) would also “make [Lawrence] an endorsement proposal” if the freshman were to turn pro after next season.
Lawrence has yet to acknowledge the opportunity.
Trevor Lawrence is going to have the chance to make significantly more money than Joe Namath did as a professional – of course, football has become big business since the 60s -, so while his addition to the Pac-Pro league might provide a comparable boost to the league’s legitimacy, Lawrence faces a far more complex decision.
The coaches in a start-up league – even those with NFL experience – aren’t going to be as accomplished as those you’ll find leading a National Championship program.
It’s safe to say that the medical personnel won’t be as talented.
The strength and conditioning programs and prehab regimens aren’t going to be as advanced as what he’ll have access to in college; and you’re not going to find many NFL teams with better facilities than what Clemson has.