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Can you ID the RBs?

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  • Can you ID the RBs?

    OK, here are some RBs. Take your shots. I did more this time. All are current NFL players (but not necessarily starters). Try to do it without cheating.

    Once again, I am struck by how similar most of the scouting reports sound, and how many players they fit. I find myself relying on physical descriptions to tell the players apart, rather than the descriptions of their abilities. Also, lots of these reports show how wrong the scouts can be. The really surprising ones are the glowing reports for RBs who washed out of the NFL quick -- they're often just as good as the reports for the guys that made it. I did not include any wash-outs here because they're (mostly) not household names.

    Good luck.

    RB#1
    Notes: High school football All-American. Also competed as a weight man and qualified for the Olympic trials in the discus.

    Positives: Huge, massive, powerful runner who is very hard to wrap up because he is so wide and thick. Patient runner with excellent vision who sets up and uses his blockers very well. Has very quick feet for a big back and exceptional power when he gets his shoulders turned and starts running downfield. Is built low to the ground and looks like a huge snowball coming down a steep hill once he gets it into gear. Lost weight and was quicker to the corner and shiftier. Had a great college career.

    Negatives: Has had a problem controlling his weight in the past. When he gets too heavy, he loses the agility and quick movements that make him special. Very limited exposure in the passing game and as a blocker. Patient, gliding runner who needs some time to get rolling. Can be stopped if hit early, before he gets his shoulders turned and starts running down the field. Has had a lot of minor injuries in the past. May restrict what a team does on offense. Is at his best if featured in the I-formation.

    Summary: Excellent feet for a big back and tremendous power once he gets rolling, but he is just another back if hit before he gets into gear and is not a quick, takeoff type of runner. Will have to be a featured back, play in the I-formation and control his weight to be at his best.

    RB#2
    Notes: High-school All-State. Gliding, short-stepping runner who generally runs with feet close to the ground when running in close quarters.

    Positives: Nice size. Smooth runner with deceptive speed and power. Exceptional balance and body control. Very good run vision and feet. Has instincts and athleticism you can’t teach or develop. Makes tacklers miss in close quarters. Improves every year. Has outstanding hands and is developing a feel for the passing game. Can block.

    Negatives: Has a history of inconsistency. Still a little rough around the edges. Has not always shown good common sense in the past. Must prove he can handle all that comes with turning pro and getting a big pile of money to do so.

    Summary: Has great ability. Could be a tremendous pro if he can handle all of the things that come with being a pro and if he continues to run as hard as he did in the ___ game.

    RB#3
    Notes: High-school All-American.

    Positives: Superproductive football player with excellent intangibles and character. Workhorse runner with the movement of a racehorse and the durability of a plowhorse. Fluid yet powerful runner with big-play explosiveness. Breaks three or four big runs almost every game. Terrific skill and vision with subtle yet brilliant moves in traffic. Tremendous balance and body control. Quick to and through the hole. Can see the cut-back lane. Breaks tackles and makes yards after contact. Has quick feet and good speed. Can bounce outside and turn the corner. Catches the ball well. Can block when he wants to.

    Negatives: Does not protect the ball that well and fumbles a lot. Has taken a lot of hits and poundings. Is not that nifty or elusive for a tailback and rarely strings moves together. Does not always want to block.

    Summary: Can be a premier NFL back if he stays healthy and does not get stars in his eyes.

    RB#4
    Notes: Unanimous high-school All-American.

    Positives: Top athlete with exceptional balance and body control. Low center of gravity. Very quick, elusive and nifty. Has good playing speed, quick acceleration and an explosive burst. Gets to full speed quickly and can get outside and turn the corner. Ran a lot harder and stronger and started to break tackles. Fine receiver with excellent hands for a back. Dangerous punt returner and is pretty good on kickoffs, too. Has excellent vision and the ability to make tacklers miss. Will string moves together at times.

    Negatives: Shorter and a little smaller than scouts would like. Has had a problem with fumbles throughout his career. May not have the size or durability to be a workhorse NFL tailback.

    Summary: At the very least, ___ will be a dangerous third-down back and return man. He could be a special running back if he is featured and used correctly.

    RB#5
    Notes: High school All-American.

    Positives: Good size. Exceptional running skills and vision. Runs with great patience yet without hesitation. Knows how to set up and use his blockers. Makes very quick and good decisions. Mind and body work together so there is no hesitation. Sees the cut-back lane. Has a burst of speed. Can make the first man miss and at times will string moves together. Above-average power and strength. Excellent balance and body control. Has learned how to finish his runs. Generally catches the ball well. Unlike many backs, he does a good job of catching the ball down the field. Quickly turns back into a runner after the catch. Has improved blitz pickup, blocking and toughness. Scores touchdowns. Generally comes up big in big games. Although he does not switch the ball from arm to arm to keep it further away from tacklers, it is not regarded as a negative because he is not a fumbler.

    Negatives: Still is not the toughest, most physical back around. Does not seem to extend himself if he sees that there is nothing there for him. Runs much better to the outside than to the inside. Will run a little tall and narrow-based on occasion. Does not have the great finishing speed to take it to the house and can be run down from behind.

    Summary: A natural runner with size, pass-catching skills and a burst of speed. Has gotten tougher and better every year. Has a good chance to start in the NFL and could start as a rookie if he improves his running between the tackles.

    RB#6
    Notes: Unanimous high school All-American. Played linebacker and quarterback in high school. Also put the high school shot (which is lighter) 64 feet, 7 inches and ran on the school’s sprint-relay team, clocking under 11.0 in the 100 meters.

    Positives: Terrific athlete with tremendous size, speed and strength. Has a massive lower body and great leg drive and strength. Can break tackles and really punish defenders when he wants to. Has very good speed for a big back. At times shows he can be sudden and hit the hole quickly. He can bounce outside and has some make-you-miss ability. ____ has improved his hands and pass-catching skills. He can dominate good teams. Potentially, he can get much better with experience at running back.

    Negatives: Is slow to get going at times, taking too long to hit and attack the hole. Does not always work to finish his runs. Limited experience at running back shows up at times, when it comes to making run decisions and using his blockers. Is still far from an accomplished pass catcher and is not a good or overly eager blocker. Seems to lose focus and gets sloppy with the ball at times.

    Summary: Can be almost as good as he wants to be with more experience — if he will really pay the price.

    RB#7
    Notes: High school football All-American. Also earned four letters in track and three in basketball.

    Positives: Outstanding athlete who has good size, speed and power. Good run skills and vision. Fluid and under control, yet can run with explosive power and finish his runs. When he gets his pads down, ____ can break tackles and be his own blocker. Does a nice job of picking his hole inside and is very effective when he runs off tackle. Can avoid the first tackler and has quick north-south moves, a burst of speed and power to, and through, the hole. Looks like a natural receiver who is fluid and has good hands and ball skills.

    Negatives: Fumbled four times against _____ and is very prone to fumbles because he carries the ball away from his body and uses it for balance. Shows very poor judgment off the field at times. Average blocker whose heart does not always seem to be in it. Has not been that durable and takes a real beating when he does not run with his pads down. Does not always play to his potential.

    Summary: At his best, is a premier NFL running back and difference-maker, but his fumbles, durability, off-the-field judgment concerns and inconsistency also must weigh in the decision as to where he should be taken in the draft.

    RB#8
    Positives: Answered a lot of nagging questions about him in game against _____ (hands, ability to run out of a conventional offense and to pick and slide inside) while showing what type of competitor he was by playing through pain. Caught the ball well and also showed he would block and could be a tackle-breaking runner against NFL-type players. _______ has gotten bigger, stronger and faster every year and responded to coaching very well. He is a great competitor and warrior with good running skills and vision, fine balance and body control. Possesses quick feet, very strong legs, thighs and hips. He has the speed, burst and agility to run outside and has developed the strength and power to be an effective inside runner. He sees the cut-back lanes and seams and knows how to finish off his runs. Has been very durable and dependable. Does not fumble often or blow many assignments.

    Negatives: Has only limited experience playing in a split backfield. Spent most of his college career in an offense in which he was getting a lot of pitches and was not asked to do that much inside running. ____ is not the same runner when he does not bend his knees and run under his pads. Loses power and balance when he doesn’t. Lacks patience as a runner at times. May not have great, long-range, breakaway speed of _______ or the rare vision and run skills of ________ , but he is fast for the first 20-40 yards and has better vision and skills than just about any other back in this draft.

    Summary: A true warrior and great football player. Very durable and productive. A winning football player.

    RB#9
    Notes: High school All-American
    Positives: Exceptional work ethic and intelligence. Has gotten bigger, stronger and better every year. Quick-darting, north-south runner with very good explosiveness through the hole and good speed. Runs with a low center of gravity and has exceptional balance and body control. Quick-footed and nifty. Can cut and make tacklers miss. Can string moves together. Very smart and aware player. Catches the ball nicely and can be used on punt returns because his hands are so sure. Will block. Is goal-oriented. Has been durable and dependable.
    Negatives: Is not powerful enough in the lower body and hips to break tackles after contact.
    Summary: Does not have as much strength and power to break tackles after contact. But he is a more natural pass catcher and is a good step faster.

    RB#10
    Notes: Track and football star in high school.
    Positives: Tough, hard-nosed runner who will not go down without a fight and will really work to finish his runs. Plays much bigger and stronger than his size and has excellent power in his lower body and hips. Has quick feet, excellent balance and speed and very good run vision. Has a quick, explosive burst of speed and is elusive enough to make the first man miss. Has always produced.
    Negatives: Lacks great size. Runs hard and takes a pounding and is not that big. Is not a really elusive runner and does not break a lot of long runs despite his speed. Has not been used that much as a receiver, and while he catches the ball, he does not have natural hands.
    Summary: Tough, hard-nosed, productive back who gets the most out his talent. Should be one of the top backs in the draft.

    RB#11
    Positives: Has dominated as both a runner and receiver who will line up in the slot at times. Is quick to and through the hole and sudden. Runs with very good vision, balance and pad level, and while a compact runner, he will surprise you with his ability to run inside. However, he is at his best when he bounces outside or fakes inside and goes wide and gets the corner turned. Will make the first man miss and, at times, will make multiple moves and make more than one tackler flail for air. Has very large hands for somebody his size and catches the ball well and can catch the ball going downfield with his hands while outstretched. Also looks very good and natural returning kickoffs and can return punts.
    Negatives: Lacks size and size potential. Powerful for size but lacks the power to break a lot of tackles on the next level. Is not that fast but is quick.
    Summary: Might be an every-down back in the NFL but will probably be a passing-down back and return man who also sees considerable action on first and second downs.

    RB#12
    Notes: High school All-American.
    Positives: Top competitor and a real tough warrior. Very determined runner and player with a never-say-die attitude. Short, squat, powerful, low-to-the-ground runner with big and powerful legs and thighs, very strong hips and a low center of power. Is about as tough to tackle as a fire hydrant or a bowling ball rolling down a hill with butcher knives sticking out of it. [Ed: Great line!] Has exceptional balance and gains a lot of yards after contact. Does not look that fast, but he breaks some really long runs.

    Negatives: Is not as fast and elusive as scouts would like. Was not used a lot in the passing game, and almost all of his catches were on short flips when he was facing the quarterback. May have some problems with blitz pickup.

    Summary: Very tough and strong inside runner with a never-say-die attitude, but he is not a top all-around back at this point.

    RB#13
    Notes: High school sprinter, basketball player and swimmer as well as a heralded football player.

    Positives: Good size and playing speed. Very strong runner who can intimidate tacklers and break tackles with his legs. Has the power to run inside and the speed to get outside and make the long run. Fine balance. Showed he could be a physical, tackle-breaking runner. Catches the ball well and does not fumble often. Looked like a franchise-type back who could carry a team.

    Negatives: Regressed on last season. Did not show the same type of running skills, vision, explosiveness and tackle-breaking ability in ___ as he showed in ___. Did way too much hunting and pecking and did not run with the type of vision he had shown in the past. Has not been responsible or had good practice habits in the past. Most years he would return in the fall out of shape and overweight, leading to slow starts. Can be headstrong and hard to coach at times. Has also been a lazy student in the past, which is why he had to spend so much time in the spring and summer getting enough credits so he would be eligible to play in the fall.

    Summary: The _____ that faced ____ in ___ looked like a first-round pick with speed, power, explosiveness and vision. But the Jordan of ____ looked like an NFL backup who lacked good run vision and did too much hunting and pecking instead of hitting holes decisively.

    RB#14
    Notes: Has been clocked in under 4.4 in the 40-yard dash on a very fast surface.

    Positives: Excellent size and speed. Has an explosive burst of speed and the speed to get outside and turn the corner. Can run with power and finish his runs. Has good balance and vision. Very versatile. Catches the ball so well he can play wide receiver and has been an effective kick and punt returner. Can be a game-breaker. Has had some games in which he has been a difference-maker. Showed inside toughness and running skills.

    Negatives: Has not been that durable. Tends to run tall and exposed, which hurts his power and makes him more vulnerable to fumbling. Also has a hard time breaking tackles with his legs. Lacks great moves and does not always show good pick and slide inside. Looked tentative at the end of the season

    Summary: A big back with scatback speed. Durability is a much bigger question than ability. Big, fast, versatile all-purpose back who can contribute in a lot of ways if he is on the field. However, still has not proven he can be a top, heavy-duty No. 1 back who can carry a team over the long haul. Gave a strong indication he could be that type of back, but he no longer seems to have the same type of durability and ability to avoid injuries. May be better off if he plays for a creative passing coach who will put him in the slot. Could be a premier back if he can stay healthy and hungry.

  • #2
    is #4 Jones-Drew or Willie Parker

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    • #3
      Bluto: You ever position in an "ID the position" thread again you could be banned. Spoiling it for everyone isn't funny and is very immature.
      2014-2015 Kentucky Wildcats (38-1)

      Congrats to Wisconsin. Even more congrats to UK haters.

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      • #4
        12: Ron Dayne?

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        • #5
          Big Ronnie Dayne is in there somewhere, but not at #12. I was sort of surprised by who #12 is.

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          • #6
            I have Dayne as #1
            Cowboys Mock GM

            Bring that title back to Big D!

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