Later this month, former Clemson wide receiver Hunter Renfrow, a former walk-on, is expected to be drafted in the 2019 NFL Draft. And though Renfrow has earned everything he accomplished to this point in his football career, his path to the NFL was perhaps laid out by another former Tiger.
Adam Humphries, who was Renfrow before there was Renfrow, signed a four-year $36 million deal last month with the Tennessee Titans.
“I think a guy like Adam has helped a guy like Renfrow,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said earlier this week. “I think Renfrow, on his own merit, he will probably be drafted. The success of Adam helps him because Adam had a pretty good career too and had better measurables than Renfrow to be honest with you.”
Humphries played for Clemson from 2011-’14. While wearing the famous No. 13 jersey, he caught 127 passes in his college career for 1,097 yards and three touchdowns. His numbers were not great, but they were solid.
However, he was not invited to the combine and he did not get drafted. Instead he was signed as undrafted free agent by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2015.
Humphries made the most of his opportunity. Over the last four seasons, he became one of the league’s best possession receivers, hauling in 219 passes for 2,329 yards and scoring nine touchdowns. He became a hot commodity in free agency this year before finally inking his $9 million per year deal with the Titans.
“It is awesome to be able to see a young man like Adam, who came to your program and just worked,” Swinney said. “When he came to our program, the story on him was he was not a very good player and we signed him to get another guy and all of that stuff. Sometimes it is hard to change the rhetoric. But he just went to work and had an unbelievable career for us. He was a great player.”
Swinney had no doubt Humphries was going to have a long career in the NFL because he knew what kind of football player he was. He knew he just needed an opportunity to show what he could do.
“He just grows on you and you realize what a good football plyer he is when he puts on the pads and steps in between the lines,” the Clemson coach said.
“He got in the right situation. He took advantage of it. He stayed healthy, so it is awesome,” Swinney continued. “He is making like nine million dollars a year. Not bad for an undrafted guy. He is one that you take a lot of pride in because I don’t think a lot of people expected him to do what he is doing outside of a few people.”