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2020 RB Draft Thread

Discussion in '2020 NFL Draft' started by RavensMania, Jan 30, 2020.

  1. good breakdown from Matt Waldman on Swift..

  2. Cam Akers is a difficult grade because of the OL (and coaching) at florida state - he frequently has to make something out of absolutely nothing and has to deal with players in the backfield that kill the play dead and has to adjust quickly - it makes it clear that he's pretty good at processing where the lane is etc. etc. and he's got the physical ability to make special plays

    but its a double-edged sword because it means that sometimes he tries to bounce the play unnecessarily to the outside almost expecting the OL to get it wrong

    he has some ball control issues but they seem to be when he's finishing plays so that might be a coaching issue (florida state coaching in general seems to have been a mess for a few seasons now)

    inconsistent in pass pro but when he gets it right he's great

    not a fluent catcher of the ball in the passing game yet - dont think he's had much practice

    super high ceiling player but not a high floor
  3. I absolutely love Clyde Edwards-Helaire - has elite footwork, elite lateral movement, runs actual routes as a receiver in the passing game with good hands

    only 2 negatives:
    - pass protection - has good body position when he does it but he doesnt do it a lot because he's primarily a receiver in the passing game or part of play-action and not being asked to do it
    - long speed - he's not necessarily a threat to take his runs the distance but given everything else id say that's not a major issue - he's not lacking for burst or quick twitch
  4. Big fan of his too, he’s a deadly receiving back and was perfect for LSUs offense, but it raises a question that I think actually makes him even more intriguing, they ran so infrequently that you have no idea what he can do with a hot hand in the run game, and there’s no easier way to get him that hot hand then the read option with Lamar. He could be so much better than we’ve seen.
  5. it says a lot that in that team and that offence he was voted team MVP
    Joe Burrow also said CEH was the best athlete on their entire team

    he might not be someone who explodes for a 70 yd td but i fully expect him if in a good situation to be high up the rankings in terms of most "explosive" (20+ yd) runs
  6. fair play to Cam Akers - im still seeing most of his OL spending most of their time on the floor and frequently the only pass blocker upright and fighting is cam akers - that's an abomination of a team:

    this image sums up that:


    • Funny Funny x 1
  7. D'andre Swift best pass protector of the top backs
  8. Well its safe to say we shouldn't be drafting any FSU linemen lol.
  9. i already complained so much about the FSU OL guys lol in the EDGE thread because it was making it basically impossible to evaluate Trevon Hill who was playing against them
  10. I have a nagging feeling that cam Akers is gonna be the best back of this class and is gonna be an absolute star... but I don’t wanna draft him lol
  11. i pretty much completely agree - ive got him as RB 3 right now - ive seen him in a lot of top 5s which is cool but he is most definitely a projection because of the situation he was in in college and a much less safe pick than many of the others around him
  12. After a quick look, Zack moss is a guy much more deserving of hype. Reminds me a lot of Alvin kamara.
  13. Yeah I completely whiffed in Zack moss on my first tape go round - he’s not as elusive or as good in space as kamara but he’s so physical between the tackles
  14. Yeah from what I’ve seen that’s accurate, he’s got an excellent one cut and burst out of the backfield; and his vision and patience seem excellent as you just constantly see him working his way slowly to the most developed gap possible and then boom he hits the burners, and once that happens good luck, because he’s got some really solid top end speed and has some great size, power, and especially balance
  15. I
    I have a massive draft crush on Cam Akers, I would be ecstatic if we managed to snag him in the third round (even though we have other needs and he is a luxury pick, I sense superstar). Can’t help thinking how helpful it would’ve been to have a healthy Mark Ingram in the playoffs, and he is 30+ years old. Don’t pass on the young superstar
  16. This is part 4 of Bob McGinn's series. He has also put out WR/TE, OL, QB and now RBs.


    1. D’ANDRE SWIFT, Georgia (5-8, 212, 4.48, 1-2): Swift followed in the footsteps of recent top backs Todd Gurley, Sony Michel and Nick Chubb at Georgia. “Dalvin Cook isn’t a bad comparison,” said one scout. “He’ll be a stud.” He was limited to 440 carries and 73 receptions because of leg and foot injuries during his three-year career. “Even this year they didn’t let him carry the load when he was the No. 1 back,” said another scout. “When I compare him to successful NFL backs, he’s not elite in any category. He is more well-rounded than Dalvin Cook. He’s a better route runner. He’s got better hands. But Cook’s one-cut vision and acceleration are better, and he’s bigger. Swift can line up and run choice routes. He can track the ball down the field. He’s got three-down value.” Gained 2,885 yards for a school-record 6.56 per carry. Another personnel man said Swift wasn’t as good as Cook or Chubb. “He’s the only back (in the draft) that really scares you in the pass game,” a fourth scout said. “That’s why he’s going to go higher. He can create mismatches in the pass game, he’s a good runner and he tested well.” Swift is from Philadelphia and scored 17 on the 12-minute, 50-question Wonderlic intelligence test.

    2. JONATHAN TAYLOR, Wisconsin (5-10 ½, 221, 4.38, 1-2): A third-year junior, Taylor averaged a whopping 2,058 rushing yards per season. “(Melvin) Gordon was pretty darn good, but Taylor is better,” one scout said in assessing Badgers backs over the last 25 years. “I think it’s slight, the difference. Montee Ball would probably be next, but the drinking got him out. (Ron) Dayne and Terrell Fletcher and John Clay. John Clay sucked; he was a good college player. Brent Moss, golly. Dope got him but he was pretty darn good, too, wasn’t he? The top-end speed with Taylor’s vision is in the top tier of guys I’ve done.” He finished with 926 carries, averaged 6.7, scored 55 TDs from scrimmage and caught 42 passes, including 26 in 2019. “Only bugaboo with him is ball security,” said another scout. “He had 18 fumbles, and he lost 15. That’s very high. His lower (body) is so thick that he just wouldn’t go down, which gives everybody time to swarm him. I think in the NFL he’ll go down a little easier.” Several scouts said he caught the ball adequately at pro day. “The elite size-speed combo is where people will buy in,” said a third scout. “He’s going to disappoint you between the tackles. He doesn’t run to his size. He’s not going hit up in there. You watch the Ohio State games, he’s cringing before he even gets to the line. He’s cringing in the hole. That was really disappointing. I’ve seen it where NFL running back coaches can get that out (of players). That was the big knock on Le’Veon (Bell) coming out, that he didn’t run very big.” He posted a Wonderlic score of 21 and is from tiny Salem, N.J. “Melvin Gordon was different,” said a fourth scout. “He was slick and explosive and made big plays all the time. This guy is strong, not powerful. Excellent vision, excellent patience. Kind of a typical Wisconsin back. He just might have more of the workout-type attributes that you’re looking for. I’d rather have Gordon, all day.”

    3. CLYDE EDWARDS-HELAIRE, LSU (5-7, 207, 4.59, 1-2): He declared for the draft a year early after making dramatic strides as a third-year junior. “He’s so flexible and runs so low, he doesn’t give you anything to hit,” said one scout. “He’s got great contact balance. He’s creative and elusive. He’s got really natural hands. Talking to the people at LSU, I really like his makeup, too. Joe Burrow said he’s the best teammate he ever had. That’s real.” He never started a game in his first two seasons and finished with 370 carries for 2,103 yards (5.7) and 23 touchdowns to go with 69 receptions. “He is a 25, 30-carry a game guy,” said another scout. “He’s put together.” Has exciting ability as a receiver all over the formation. “I think he will take over that third-down role the minute he walks in the office,” said a third scout. “You can screen him, do things to get him the ball in space. Kevin Faulk kind of had that small, stocky stature. He’s a little squirt but I like him a lot. He reminds me of that kid that came out of Florida Atlantic (Devin Singletary) and played well this year. He’s more quick than Maurice Jones-Drew (but) Maurice had breakaway speed.” Scored 21 on the Wonderlic. “Some guys are too short, but I don’t think he is,” said a fourth scout. “He’s thick and just carries his weight so well. For some people it can be a benefit. Like Tarik Cohen. He’s short but thick. Or Russell Wilson, short and thick. It’s so hard to get them down because of their center of gravity.” Edwards-Helaire is from Baton Rouge, La.

    4. J.K. DOBBINS, Ohio State (5-9 ½, 209, no 40, 1-2): Dobbins is a third-year junior and a three-year starter. “Like him,” said one scout. “He runs hard. Just a natural runner. He’s good on first contact. He runs with an edge. He’s going to be a really good back.” Dobbins played his best in big games and finished with 724 carries for 4,459 (6.2) and 38 TDs to go with 71 receptions. “We had an awesome interview with him,” said another scout. “He’s really smart, really upbeat. He loves football. The whole thing is important to him. He knows what he’s doing. He wants to be coached.” His deficiencies in pass protection became pronounced as the season went along. “He’s OK but he’s not special,” said a third scout. “He’s a good backup back. I don’t see him breaking tackles. He’s got to have room. He’s quick. He’s not a power back. He’s kind of a change-of-pace guy.” Dobbins is from LaGrange, Texas. “I’ve got him as the best back because I think he has more three-down ability,” said a fourth scout. “You can actually move him out of the backfield and do things. He can become a really good player in this league.” Dobbins posted a Wonderlic of 16.

    5. CAM AKERS, Florida State (5-10 ½, 217, 4.46, 2-3): Akers joined Warrick Dunn and Dalvin Cook as the only Seminoles with more than one 1,000-yard rushing season. “You talk about a guy who was stuck with a lemon and trying to make lemonade out of it at FSU,” said one scout. “A nightmare, and he persevered through it. He’s a hell of a player. He was a quarterback in high school (Clinton, Miss.). He went to FSU when they were riding high and the whole program fell apart around him. I give him credit. That was a disaster. Terrible line. He was getting hit before the ball got to him.” A third-year junior, he carried 586 times for 2,874 (4.9) and 27 TDs to go with 69 receptions. “He ran like a scalded dog (in the 40), but he don’t play that way,” another scout said. “I questioned his toughness and run instincts. They did throw the ball to him. Cam Akers is the kind of kid who knows who to block and he will get in their way. Some of these kids won’t even get in the way. They try to cut.” Some scouts insist he isn’t special; others insist he is. “He’s not a great makeup guy,” said a third scout. “One of these talented guys that never put all the commitment there. But the guy has the talent to be an every-down back. It’s where you want to throw the dice on him.”

    6. ZACK MOSS, Utah (5-9 ½, 223, 4.62, 3): Moss did himself no favors with a bad 40 at the combine. “But a lot of good backs run in the 4.6’s,” said one scout. “He’s going to give you an identity. Teams that want to be more of a ball-control, run-heavy team, this is your guy. He’s going to be a workhorse. He runs with an attitude. He really was Utah’s offense this year.” He finished with 712 carries for 4,067 (5.7) and 38 TDs to go with 66 receptions. Played four seasons, starting 37 of 45 games. “Eddie Lacy is probably a good comparison,” a second scout said. “Not as good. Runs hard, quick feet. Easily breaks arm tackles. No real burst. Degree of tightness. Aggressive, hard-charging runner.” He’s a medical question because of knee, ankle and shoulder injuries. “He’s big and has some fluid movement but I just didn’t see any suddenness, any burst,” said a third scout. “To me, he was just a guy. I didn’t see a great role (for) in the passing game. Maybe he fits your deal as a big back or maybe a 4-minute back or whatever.” Moss is from Hialeah Gardens, Fla.

    7. KE’SHAWN VAUGHN, Vanderbilt (5-9 ½, 214, 4.50, 3-4): Vaughn played for bad teams at Illinois (2015-’16) and Vandy (2018-’19) and could be a sleeper. “Heck, I could see him eventually starting in the league,” said one scout. “He’s got burst. He’s talented. On an undermanned football team he had to shoulder the load this year. He’s kind of been forgotten about.” Vaughn started eight of 22 games for the Illini and 21 of 24 for the Commodores. “He can get the home run and the tough yards,” another scout said. “He (has) explosive speed. He has improved in the passing game but he’s still not ideal.” He finished with 572 carries for 3,296 (5.8) and 30 TDs to go with 67 receptions. “He’s stiff in the ankles and he played with nobody, but he’s a tough son of a gun now,” a third scout said. “He’s tough as shit. He played a lot better last year (2018) when (Pat) Shurmur’s kid (Kyle) was the quarterback.” Vaughn is from Nashville.

    8. A.J. DILLON, Boston College (6-0 ½, 247, 4.50, 3-4): Dillon played just three seasons, but he holds the school record for yards (4,382) and TDs (38). “He and Derrick Henry are similar in the sense they’re better in carry 30 than carry five,” said one scout. “They lull you to sleep. They’re taller, not physical guys. But when you get to the third or fourth quarter, they’re just so heavy that people just get tired of hitting them. Derrick Henry was a much more natural runner coming out.” He stunned some NFL personnel by running a fast 40. Also led the backs in the Wonderlic (30), vertical jump (41 inches) and broad jump (10-11). “I didn’t think he had any speed,” said another scout. “His toughness wasn’t that good. He didn’t run like a power back. He wasn’t a tackle breaker. Very limited (as a receiver) but he can catch. He’s big and he’s hard to bring down. He should be knocking people down. He should be like a bowling ball with the pins but he’s not.” He finished with 845 carries, a 5.2 average and 21 receptions. “In the old days this guy would be a fullback,” a third scout said. “In goal-line and short-yardage the guy would be excellent. He gets 3 yards each time. He takes people with him.” Dillon is from New London, Conn.

    9. DARRYNTON EVANS, Appalachian State (5-10, 203, 4.47, 3-4): Evans backed up in 2016, sat out ’17 with an injury redshirt and started 22 of 27 games in 2018-’19 before declaring a year early. “He’s a finesse guy,” said one scout. “He’s not a very strong inside runner, but get him on the perimeter and he’s got a really natural feel. He can slip (blocks) and make guys miss, and he’s a really good kickoff returner.” He finished with 482 carries for 2,884 (6.0) and 25 TDs to go with 39 receptions. “He’s fast, mean,” a second scout said. “He might turn out better than some of these more heralded guys. He’s got every bit as much ability as some of them. He’s just coming from a small program, albeit a successful one. He’s a good sleeper. It would not surprise me to see this guy starting within a year.” Evans is from Oak Hill, Fla. “He’s got good hands and some return ability, but he is not tough and he will not block,” said a third scout. “He’s not a tough kid at all. But he is an athletic, talented kid. Fourth round.”

    10. ANTHONY McFARLAND, Maryland (5-8, 208, 4.44, 4): McFarland’s claim to fame was a 21-carry, 298-yard explosion against Ohio State in November 2018 when he scored on runs of 81 and 75 yards. “Just looking at that game, you get excited about him,” said one scout. “I remember there was one run, you go, ‘Who is this?’ Didn’t have quite the production you’d expect. He is a talented guy with speed.” McFarland departed with two years of eligibility remaining. “We took him off the board because his football character is absolutely atrocious,” said another scout. “He’s like a child. Really high maintenance. Every week there’s going to be something with this guy. Now, talent-wise, whew. He’s a weapon.” He ran a fast 40 at the combine but fared poorly in the vertical jump (29 ½) and broad jump (9-8). “Oh, man, he can accelerate,” a third scout said. “He looks like Dalvin Cook. He’s a little smaller but he has that type of speed. If you can give him a crease in a one-cut scheme I think he could be effective. Dalvin’s a more complete player, especially when you factor in the off-the-field stuff.” He finished with 239 carries for 1,636 (6.8) and 12 TDs to go with 24 receptions. McFarland’s Wonderlic score of 11 was the lowest among the top 12 backs. He’s from Hyattsville, Md.

    11. ANTONIO GIBSON, Memphis (6-0 ½, 228, 4.41, 4): Gibson played two seasons in junior college and caught six passes as a backup WR in 2018 at Memphis before exploding for 12 TDs from scrimmage in ‘19. He moved from WR to RB late in the season, then played RB at the Senior Bowl. “The guy just came out of the blue,” said one scout. “The last two games they stuck him in the backfield and the guy just exploded. He looked extremely natural playing back there.” Gibson opened more eyes in Mobile, especially during the game. “You want to watch the Senior Bowl game,” another scout said. “He flashes speed. He’s got power. He can catch the ball. Will run a little high. Has to get that down. Will run aggressively inside. Has the feet to make defenders miss on inside runs. Huge ceiling.” Just 44 receptions and 33 carries in his career, and he scored 12 on the Wonderlic. “They had Tony Pollard the year before, and he kind of made a name for himself at Mobile,” said a third scout. “Gibson’s the same way. As a receiver this dude breaks a million tackles. If you draft him you need a really creative coordinator. He could end up being a better player than Jonathan Taylor.” Gibson is from Stockbridge, Ga.

    12. JOSHUA KELLEY, UCLA (5-10 ½, 212, 4.53, 4-5): Kelley played two seasons at UC Davis, departed after a coaching change and walked on at UCLA, redshirting in 2017. He started in 2018-’19, surpassing 1,000 yards each year. “Similar to Jamaal Williams,” said one scout. “I’d take Kelley by a nod because he has more upside than Jamaal. He may not get much love on draft day, but he’s going to be a good pro.” Kelley finished with 647 carries for 3,442 (5.3) and 31 TDs to go with 42 catches and has an effervescent personality. “He’s going to play for somebody,” a second scout said. “He’s too knowledgeable, know what I mean?” He rushed 15 times for 105 yards in the Senior Bowl. Said a third scout: “I got him buried. Tight hips, dances too much. Dime-a-dozen running back.” Kelley is from Lancaster, Calif.

    OTHERS, in order: DeeJay Dallas, Miami; Lamical Perine, Florida; Eno Benjamin, Arizona State; Mike Warren, Cincinnati; Patrick Taylor, Memphis; James Robinson, Illinois State; LeVante Bellamy, Western Michigan; Rico Dowdle, South Carolina; Darius Anderson, TCU; Raymond Calais, Louisiana; Javon Leake, Maryland; J.J. Taylor, Arizona; Xavier Jones, SMU; JaMycal Hasty, Baylor; Toren Young, Iowa.
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  17. Probally just me but I like Taylor, CEH and Akers than Swift and if one of those 3 is available in the 2nd I think we should grab him. I dont totally trust Ingram to stay healthy and I'd like to at least get a 4 yr answer to team with Lamar. I was especially surprized how well Taylor looked in catching drills at the combine and posting a 4.39. Just want another Ray Rice capable player.
  18. I'm not really a proponent of picking a RB early this year... unless it's CEH. He's the only guy that I think makes big enough of a difference for us.
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  19. Idk when Ingram went down the running game completely closed down and our 2 best RBs thru history were drafted in the 1st 2 rds. Taylor never had much of a chance to catch the ball at Wisconsin but looked real smooth at the combine. I like both him and CEH with Akers being close behind. The rest are just a who's who where you may find a gem but the running game is our bread and butter to suceed. Of course adding to the oline is important too. Gotta have holes. Ask Akers.

    The more I look at receivers I just dont know. I would think very hard about trading with SF and give up a 2nd and 3rd but only for Jeudy. He reminds me of the famous Jerry. Other than that I would wait later in the draft and get Duvernay who I really like. Great slot potential.

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