In 2016, Clowney moved to defensive end, played in his first NFL postseason, was named to his first Pro Bowl, garnered Associated Press Second-Team All-Pro honors, but the third year defensive standout has more to prove.
Clowney, who started all 14 games he played last season, was one of just two players in the NFL at least 50 tackles, 6.0 sacks, 16 tackles for loss and two passes defensed (Saints DE Cameron Jordan). The transition from college to NFL has been a gradual one for Clowney, but in 2016, he fully checked that off his list too.
“Yeah, it’s a lot more learning on this level,” Clowney said. “You’ve got to learn more about who your opponent is on this level that I did in college. In college, it’s like, you outplay the guy in front of you, you beat this guy, and you’re really just going against this guy. In the NFL, you’ve got to learn around you and certain pieces on the defense, where everybody fits, so you know where you fit at.”