Add another NFL talking head to the list of pundits who have piled on potential top draft pick Jadeveon Clowney’s work ethic, this time a newly enshrined Hall of Fame defensive lineman who spent time with the Tampa Bay Bucs and the Oakland Raiders during his NFL career that included a Super Bowl ring.
That’s right, Oakland’s favorite former defensive tackle (Blatant Lie Alert) Warren Sapp has joined the rotation of analysts who have pointed out Clowney’s up and down effort levels. The former successful Tampa Bay Buccaneer (and not so successful Oakland Raider) voiced his concerns over Clowney’s lack of hustle on the NFL Network on Monday night.
“My grandfather taught me something a long time ago. He said ‘You will never get more money by doing less work,’” Sapp said. “I look at Jadeveon Clowney’s tape and I don’t see a guy that is playing the game with his hair on fire, making plays, running up and down the field sideline to sideline, doing all of the things.”
“That’s the real issue with me: What else is he doing not waking up?” Sapp added. “The next job you have is rushing the quarterback, young man, getting ready for the NFL. If you wake up every morning and you’re not ready, prepared to go out and do the things you have to be to be a [defensive] end, outside linebacker – a pass rushing specialist – what else is there?”
Concerns over Clowney’s lack of a second gear have been long documented since he went under the microscope during a high pressure and inconsistent 2013 season at South Carolina. Still Clowney managed to make more than enough plays to continue his status as the best player in the draft and could very well be the top overall pick regardless of the naysayers who have issues with his attitude/effort. Whichever NFL team that drafts him will have to find a way to get maximum effort out of Clowney, who even when only playing when he wants to is head and shoulders above the pack leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft in terms of talent, tape, and overall potential.