2017 NFL Combine: Running Back Review

On Monday, I watched the majority of the running back drills at the NFL combine and just wanted to give a quick take at what I saw. (Disclaimer – I am not a “Draft Guru” and just giving my opinion on what I saw throughout the day)
Leonard Fournette, LSU –  Plain and simple, he is a monster. He ran around a 4.5 at 240 lbs. Now soak that in and imagine getting hit by that at full speed. He did a fair job in catching the ball and should be an easy top ten pick. The one thing he did not do was the bench press, but looking at his body tone, there would not have been a doubt as to his reps.
Christian McCaffrey, Stanford – He probably solidified himself as a low first rounder too high second rounder. He ran a 4.48, slightly slower, but still looked effortless. Where he really showed his talent was catching the ball and the drills involving cutting and pivoting. He did poor in the bench press with only 10 reps, but it shouldn’t be a draft killer. Reminds me of a better version of Danny Woodhead, and will contribute right away when on the field.
Alvin Kamara, Tennessee – He looked like a jack-of-all-trades, and can be a 3 down back. Kamara has good, not great speed, above average vision and fantastic balance. He has the look of a lead back. He will be a mid to early 2nd round pick unless someone falls in love with him and gets him at the tail end of round 1.
Semaje Perine, Oklahoma – He was a monster on the bench press with 30 reps. Perine did have issues catching balls out of the backfield. He should be a 3rd to 4th round pick.
Tarik Cohen, North Carolina A&T – Coming out of school, he is known as “The Human Joystick”. He did very well in the 40 at 4.42 and his cut and pivot technique was really strong. He did not come in with a lot of expectations but nonetheless performed well almost everywhere except the bench press. At 5’6, he probably will be a good change of pace running back that can create havoc, a la Darren Sproles. He will look to go in the 4th to 5th rounds and may sneak up on draft boards as time moves on.
Dalvin Cook – FSU – He could be the first running back taken off the board, and he performed about how people expected, which was very good. He didn’t do anything unexpected but didn’t do anything that would wow the scouts as well. It could be qualified as a disappointment, but maybe it is being nit picky.
Donta Foreman, Texas – He didn’t run drills due to a foot injury. Pro day will be important for the big bruising back.
Jahad Thomas, Temple – A big disappointment at the combine, He did not look like the same guy we saw on the field at Temple, He only ran a 4.62 40, and to me, looked stiff in all his drills. He could just not be a good “test taker” in terms of the combine. He could be more of an on the field performer, but from what I saw he disappointed.
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Nick Ficorelli
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