National Signing Day 2020: Ranking the Top 25 Offensive Prospects

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistJanuary 27, 2020

National Signing Day 2020: Ranking the Top 25 Offensive Prospects

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    D.J. Uiagalelei
    D.J. UiagaleleiCredit: Blair Angulo, 247Sports

    Although December has become the most critical period of the recruiting year, national signing day remains an exciting part of the college football calendar.

    Unsigned prospects will ink their national letters of intent on the first Wednesday of February to wrap up the 2020 cycle.

    Recruiting services do an outstanding job highlighting these players throughout their high school careers. We've monitored the prospects along the way, watching camp performances, highlight videos and All-American showcases and reading constant updates.

    And now, the final product has arrived.

    B/R has highlighted our 25 favorite prospects on both offense and defense, also merging for a final top 50. A brief look at each player's college outlook accompanies all 25.

25-21. Ngata, Rivers, Rosemy, Chaney Jr., Scott Jr.

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    25. Daniyel Ngata, RB

    Height/Weight: 5'9", 180 pounds

    Status: Signed with Arizona State

    College outlook: The highest-ranked prospect in a top-25 class, Ngata has enrolled early at Arizona State. He's entering an ideal situation for immediate snaps with Eno Benjamin's departure and the lack of prior production among returning players.

                

    24. Jalen Rivers, OT

    Height/Weight: 6'6", 331 pounds

    Status: Signed with Miami

    College outlook: The 'Canes are desperate to improve the offensive line after surrendering the third-most sacks in the nation last season. Rivers, who stood out positively at the Under Armour All-America Game, might provide some help right away.

                

    23. Marcus Rosemy, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'2", 195 pounds

    Status: Signed with Georgia

    College outlook: Rosemy fits a similar profile to two other receivers in this top 25. Georgia has a trio of expected starters in George Pickens, Demetris Robertson and Dominick Blaylock (pending his ACL recovery). Rosemy should crack the rotation, though it's fair to suggest his production will be relatively limited.

                

    22. Don Chaney Jr., RB

    Height/Weight: 5'10½", 203 pounds

    Status: Signed with Miami

    College outlook: Lorenzo Lingard's decision to transfer has created an opportunity for Chaney and 2020 signee Jaylan Knighton. Cam'Ron Harris will start, but the second-string spot is available.

                

    21. Gee Scott Jr., WR

    Height/Weight: 6'2½", 207 pounds

    Status: Signed with Ohio State

    College outlook: Ohio State will lean heavily on Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson next season but must replace three senior receivers. Scott will compete with fellow Columbus-bound receivers Julian Fleming and Jaxon Smith-Njigba for snaps.

20-16. Card, Wedig, Tyree, Smith, Boutte

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    20. Hudson Card, QB

    Height/Weight: 6'2½", 179 pounds

    Status: Signed with Texas

    College outlook: Card won't be a starter in 2020, barring an injury to Sam Ehlinger. Card's primary focus will be challenging Casey Thompson for the backup spot and readying for a competition in 2021 after Ehlinger's eligibility is up.

                     

    19. Trey Wedig, OT

    Height/Weight: 6'8", 320 pounds

    Status: Signed with Wisconsin

    College outlook: As usual, the Badgers dominated in-state recruiting with Wedig as the prized addition. Also as usual, don't expect a freshman to make an immediate impact on Wisconsin's offensive line. Wedig should be a factor in 2021 or 2022.

                     

    18. Chris Tyree, RB

    Height/Weight: 5'10", 179 pounds

    Status: Signed with Notre Dame

    College outlook: Tyree's ascension to the starting role would be a surprise, but he'll likely see the field in some capacity. While he racked up 8.6 yards per carry in high school, none of Notre Dame's returning runners averaged more than 4.3 yards. The Irish can find a place for Tyree's explosiveness.

                

    17. Arian Smith, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'1", 170 pounds

    Status: Signed with Georgia

    College outlook: Smith has elite speed. As the Dawgs look for more production at receiver, that will always be an intriguing skill. But in all likelihood, Smith won't be a major factor in 2020.

                

    16. Kayshon Boutte, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'0", 180 pounds

    Status: Signed with LSU

    College outlook: LSU returns All-American wideout Ja'Marr Chase along with Terrace Marshall Jr., who caught 13 touchdowns in 2019. Boutte, though, might be the replacement for NFL-bound Justin Jefferson in the slot. Either as a starter or top reserve, Boutte should be a contributor as a true freshman.

15-11. Jarrett, Jones, Burton, Smith-Njigba, Bigsby

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    15. Rakim Jarrett, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'0", 208 pounds

    Status: Signed with Maryland

    College outlook: Although poor quarterback play hampered Maryland's offense in 2019, it's still damning to see exactly one receiver reach 300 yards. Jarrett has every opportunity to play immediately alongside Dontay Demus Jr. and Jeshaun Jones.

                     

    14. Broderick Jones, OT

    Height/Weight: 6'5", 298 pounds

    Status: Committed to Georgia

    College outlook: Provided he signs with Georgia, Jones has a path to playing time depending on his position. The Dawgs need to replace four starters along the line but have better depth at interior spots. If Jones sticks at tackle, he'd be a contender to start opposite Jamaree Salyer.

                

    13. Jermaine Burton, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'0½", 190 pounds

    Status: Signed with Georgia

    College outlook: Burton's versatility may be important if Dominick Blaylock isn't quite healthy in September. If not, Burton could earn regular playing time if he passes redshirt sophomore Kearis Jackson and redshirt junior Matt Landers on the depth chart.

                

    12. Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR

    Height/Weight: 6'1", 188 pounds

    Status: Signed with Ohio State

    College outlook: Smith-Njigba adds to a stacked receiving group at Ohio State, but patience will be necessary. While he'll likely be a regular sight as scores get lopsided, Smith-Njigba shouldn't be expected to make a serious impact until 2021 or later.

                

    11. Tank Bigsby, RB

    Height/Weight: 6'0", 210 pounds

    Status: Signed with Auburn

    College outlook: The nickname "Tank" certainly fits his powerful style. But for Bigsby to play in 2020, he'd need to plow past a deep collection of runners. Auburn returns JaTarvious Whitlow, D.J. Williams, Shaun Shivers and Mark-Antony Richards.

10. Darnell Washington, TE

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    Height/Weight: 6'7½", 261 pounds

    Status: Signed with Georgia

    College Outlook

    Darnell Washington is a physically impressive human. And for someone his size, Washington's level of athleticism is spectacular and a pivotal part of his 5-star billing. The imposing tight end also needs a year to refine his receiver-specific skills.

    Georgia recognized that and decided to bring in Florida State grad transfer Tre' McKitty. He'll be the starter in 2020 while Washington develops and attempts to fill the role in 2021.

9. Demond Demas, WR

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    Height/Weight: 6'3", 182 pounds

    Status: Signed with Texas A&M

    College Outlook

    Demond Demas is entering an interesting situation.

    We know Texas A&M will lean heavily on Jhamon Ausbon, and we think Ainias Smith is ready for a larger role. Otherwise, the rotation is a talented group that's mostly short on production.

    While they don't all play the same position, Hezekiah Jones, Caleb Chapman, Dylan Wright, Jalen Preston, Kam Brown and Muhsin Muhammad III were all 4-stars. Camron Buckley has 62 career catches. Chase Lane and Devin Price are possible rotational pieces.

    Demas has a path to playing time. It's also reasonable to believe he'll be on the sideline for much of 2020.

8. Bijan Robinson, RB

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    Height/Weight: 6'0", 200 pounds

    Status: Signed with Texas

    College Outlook

    Rising junior Keaontay Ingram has a pair of 700-yard seasons to his name. Barring injury, he'll be the Longhorns' lead runner.

    Injuries caused quite the problem for Texas in 2019, enough to force quarterback Roschon Johnson into the backfield. He responded with 649 yards and seven touchdowns, but it's far more ideal to have a 5-star talent such as Bijan Robinson in the backup role.

    Robinson's top competition will be Daniel Youngwho managed 16 carries last seasonand possibly Jordan Whittington, depending on whether Texas views him as a back or receiver.

7. Demarkcus Bowman, RB

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    Height/Weight: 5'9", 191 pounds

    Status: Signed with Clemson

    College Outlook

    In one surprising draft decision, Demarkcus Bowman's immediate outlook at Clemson changed dramatically. Long expected to chase the NFL, Travis Etienne instead announced he'd return in 2020.

    Bowman could've soared to No. 2 on the depth chart, but he'll be no higher than third as a freshman. Etienne will unquestionably be the featured back, and Lyn-J Dixon will be the backup after rushing for 635 yards and six scores in 2019.

6. Zachary Evans, RB

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    Height/Weight: 5'11", 200 pounds

    Status: Unsigned

    College Outlook

    Although he initially signed to Georgia, the school released Zachary Evans from his national letter of intent.

    The 5-star's recruitment is wide open. Among his current suitors, Texas A&M offers the greatest chance for immediate playing time. LSU (John Emery Jr.) and Ole Miss (Jerrion Ealy) have previous top-rated prospects ready to handle lead roles in 2020.

5. Arik Gilbert, TE

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    Height/Weight: 6'5", 253 pounds

    Status: Signed with LSU

    College Outlook

    Saying that LSU has a negative amount of returning production at tight end feels a little wrong, but it's true. Thaddeus Moss declared for the 2020 NFL draft, Stephen Sullivan graduated, and Jamal Pettigrew lost a yard on his single reception in 2019.

    That's the long version of calling Arik Gilbert a potential starter.

    Gilbert will compete with Pettigrew, Aaron Moffitt and Kole Taylor; the latter two have zero career catches at LSU.

4. Paris Johnson Jr., OT

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    Height/Weight: 6'7", 290 pounds

    Status: Signed with Ohio State

    College Outlook

    Ohio State finds itself in good position along the offensive line thanks to the returns of Thayer Munford, Wyatt Davis and Josh Myers. Former 5-stars Harry Miller and Nicholas Petit-Frere figure to start at left guard and right tackle, too.

    Nevertheless, Paris Johnson Jr. likely won't redshirt. The early enrollee should be part of the competition at right tackle, and Munford has dealt with injuries issues at Ohio State. Johnson can establish himself as the second-stringer at either spot.

3. Bryce Young, QB

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    Height/Weight: 5'11", 183 pounds

    Status: Signed with Alabama

    College Outlook

    Listed at 5'11", Bryce Young doesn't have prototypical quarterback size. Alabama managed to get by with 6'1" Tua Tagovailoa behind center, though.

    Mac Jones is a much larger obstacle to Young getting on the field quickly in Tuscaloosa. A rising junior, he threw for 1,172 yards and 13 touchdowns with two interceptions in four starts last season.

    Young, who enrolled early, will at least battle Taulia Tagovailoa for the backup role.

2. Julian Fleming, WR

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    Height/Weight: 6'2", 199 pounds

    Status: Signed with Ohio State

    College Outlook

    Julian Fleming may have a similar rise to 2019 5-star Garrett Wilson, who demanded a place in the rotation as the season continued.

    The problemfor Fleming, not Ohio Stateis Wilson and Chris Olave are definite starters. They'll headline the receiving corps and handle a majority of meaningful snaps. The bright side is Ohio State will likely cruise through much of the schedule again, giving Fleming plenty of opportunities to produce as a freshman.

1. D.J. Uiagalelei, QB

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    Height/Weight: 6'4½", 246 pounds

    Status: Signed with Clemson

    College Outlook

    Given his two national championship appearances, Trevor Lawrence has a pretty decent hold on the starting job. D.J. Uiagalelei will join a quarterback room waiting for a competition in 2021.

    However, the backup spot opened up after grad transfer Chase Brice understandably decided to play his final season elsewhere. Uiagalelei, who enrolled early at Clemson, will begin challenging Taisun Phommachanh for that position during the spring.

              

    All recruiting information via 247Sports. Stats from NCAA.com, cfbstats.com or B/R research. Follow Bleacher Report CFB Writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.