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View Full Version : What do the Steelers need more - a Big back or a scatback?



hawaiiansteel
03-25-2010, 05:34 PM
Mendy is entrenched as our starter, Mewelde may move up the depth chart and be our #2 back and 3rd down back. we need to replace Willie Parker, not sure if Isaac "RedZone" Redman or Justin Vincent are capable of that.

there's a very good chance the Steelers select a RB in this year's draft. the question is, what do the Steelers need more - a big bruising back ala Bettis that can pick up the short-yardage or a back that has more explosiveness and catch passes out of the backfield?

SteelCrazy
03-25-2010, 05:45 PM
Mendy is entrenched as our starter, Mewelde may move up the depth chart and be our #2 back and 3rd down back. we need to replace Willie Parker, not sure if Isaac "RedZone" Redman or Justin Vincent are capable of that.

there's a very good chance the Steelers select a RB in this year's draft. the question is, what do the Steelers need more - a big bruising back ala Bettis that can pick up the short-yardage or a back that has more explosiveness and catch passes out of the backfield?


Personally, I'd like to sign a Bo Jackson type.........

hawaiiansteel
03-25-2010, 05:51 PM
of all the current RBs on the roster, Mendy would be our best short-yardage back. but what if he gets hurt again, shouldn't we bring in some added competition?


Steelers | Tomlin believes Mendenhall can be short yard guy

Thu, 25 Mar 2010


Scott Brown, of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, reports Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said he believes RB Rashard Mendenhall can be the team's short yardage back next season.

http://www.kffl.com/

tomco09
03-25-2010, 05:59 PM
of all the current RBs on the roster, Mendy would be our best short-yardage back. but what if he gets hurt again, shouldn't we bring in some added competition?


Steelers | Tomlin believes Mendenhall can be short yard guy

Thu, 25 Mar 2010


Scott Brown, of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, reports Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said he believes RB Rashard Mendenhall can be the team's short yardage back next season.

http://www.kffl.com/


So in other words, he will run Mende till his wheels fall off ? Hlow did that work for Parker? Well I hope they pick up Spiller in the 1st

Chadman
03-25-2010, 06:01 PM
Given the efectiveness of our previous 'speed back' with the current OL, Chadman would look for a short yardage Big Back.

Besides, Mendenhall is fast enough.

Discipline of Steel
03-25-2010, 06:11 PM
Scat backs are better between the 20s. Our issue was short yardage and goal line. Big

steelblood
03-25-2010, 06:36 PM
FULLback. We need a fullback (a real big, nasty sledgehammer).

Chadman
03-25-2010, 06:38 PM
FULLback. We need a fullback (a real big, nasty sledgehammer).

Only good if Arians works the FB into the playbook though.

SteelHead
03-25-2010, 06:39 PM
Our problem in short yardage running has nothing to do with the size of our running backs nor will it be helped simply by the size of a rookie rb coming in. It's our poor blocking and run play calling in those situations.

NW Steeler
03-25-2010, 07:09 PM
:Agree

Strengthen the Oline. But I would lean towards the big back. Mendy is pretty damn fast and both he and Moore are very good options out of the backfield. We need a nasty bruiser that punishes the defense. Let them chase Mendy, then hammer them with a big back.

stlrz d
03-25-2010, 08:02 PM
We need a guy with the speed of Chris Johnson, the power of AP, the versatility of Marshall Faulk, the elusiveness of Barry Sanders and the size of the Bus.

And hopefully we can get him in the later rounds. :D

SteelerNation1
03-25-2010, 08:07 PM
We need a guy with the speed of Chris Johnson, the power of AP, the versatility of Marshall Faulk, the elusiveness of Barry Sanders and the size of the Bus.

And hopefully we can get him in the later rounds. :D
Toby Gerhart? :lol: :lol: :lol:

SS Laser
03-25-2010, 09:22 PM
Steelers | Could re-sign Parker
Thu, 25 Mar 2010 14:33:04 -0700

Scott Brown, of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, reports the Pittsburgh Steelers could re-sign unrestricted free-agent RB Willie Parker.



Read more: http://www.kffl.com/team/30/nfl#ixzz0jF1rMTxt


:Boobs :stirpot :tt1 :Clap :Beer :tt2 :Bow :Steel

steelz09
03-25-2010, 09:44 PM
A big back...

Steel Life
03-25-2010, 09:48 PM
We need a guy with the speed of Chris Johnson, the power of AP, the versatility of Marshall Faulk, the elusiveness of Barry Sanders and the size of the Bus.

And hopefully we can get him in the later rounds. :D
Jim Brown is retired...

hawaiiansteel
03-25-2010, 09:51 PM
We need a guy with the speed of Chris Johnson, the power of AP, the versatility of Marshall Faulk, the elusiveness of Barry Sanders and the size of the Bus.

And hopefully we can get him in the later rounds. :D



don't we already have that RB on our roster in Frank "The Tank" Summers and Isaac "RedZone" Redman? :tt1 :tt2

Steel Life
03-25-2010, 10:01 PM
Mendy is entrenched as our starter, Mewelde may move up the depth chart and be our #2 back and 3rd down back. we need to replace Willie Parker, not sure if Isaac "RedZone" Redman or Justin Vincent are capable of that.

there's a very good chance the Steelers select a RB in this year's draft. the question is, what do the Steelers need more - a big bruising back ala Bettis that can pick up the short-yardage or a back that has more explosiveness and catch passes out of the backfield?
It's a good question & one I've waffled back & forth on. I kept thinking that what we needed, but I kept coming back to the fact that most "premiere" RBs (with the possible exception of Barry Sanders) stay on with the focus being on the blocking. But with the "scat-back" it would another dimension to the offense in the event we find that match-up better or a game situation mandates it. Moore was that guy, but the drop-off in his production from '08 to '09 really makes me wonder if his shelf-life is closer than we thought. All that said, I wouldn't scream which ever way they decide to go - unless it's in the first.

eniparadoxgma
03-25-2010, 11:20 PM
I want a big ass fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

hawaiiansteel
03-25-2010, 11:50 PM
Who is this guy? Clemson RB C.J. Spiller
Sporting News

Thursday, Mar. 25, 2010


Speedy jack-of-all-trades or too-brittle back?

Much like Warrick Dunn had to do, C.J. Spiller will have to prove he can handle being a small-sized back in the NFL.

From his north Florida boyhood home, C.J. Spiller watched Florida State 's Warrick Dunn dance through defenses and emerge as the best back in Seminoles history. Spiller, deemed too small all his life, would employ Dunn as a template for how a little squirt can excel in a big man's game.

"I just loved the way he carried himself," Spiller says . "There were lots of good players at that time. He was the one guy I chose to watch."

When NFL scouts question Spiller's size— 5-11, 195— he hopes they also see his good qualities, not the least of which is versatility. Spiller returned kicks and punts throughout his career but really thrived in the role last fall. His five returns for scores—four kickoffs plus a punt—showcased the shiftiness and speed that will make him attractive at the next level.

"No matter who they played," says Georgia Tech defensive coordinator and former Virginia coach Al Groh , "nobody on the field seemed as fast as Spiller."

He showcased what makes him special with a 96-yard touchdown on the opening kickoff of the season, but that game also provided detractors with more ammunition. His history is filled with a variety of nagging injuries, and the 2009 opener provided a double whammy — toe and hamstring injuries — as he exited after just four carries.

Same ol' C.J. Electrifying? No doubt. Brittle? Unfortunately so.

But Spiller 's senior season would be different.

He returned the following game to pile up 20 carries and grew stronger each week, leading Clemson to an ACC Atlantic Division title.

He became the first player in ACC history with at least 1,000 yards rushing and 500 yards receiving. His 2,680 all-purpose yards set a single-season ACC record, and his mark of 7,588 career all-purpose yards ranks second in NCAA Division I-A history. But perhaps the statistic that made the strongest case for him as an NFL back: 216 carries, 71 more than in any other season.

The kind of durability those numbers demonstrate provides a nice addition to Spiller's obvious trump card: his NFL-level speed. His 40 time at the Combine was 4.37.

"He has unbelievable acceleration," Tigers running backs coach Andre' Powell says . "He changes direction, and then he's able to get back to top speed in a hurry. That's what separates him."

Spiller spent his draft preparation focused on strength and flexibility, dabbling in yoga for the first time.

Still, he won't grow between now and the draft. And even with all his ACC records, he'll have to answer those who doubt he's the next big little man.

"It won't be the first time that question has appeared ," Spiller says . "I have the size I was blessed with. But I've got a great deal of ability, too."


If Warrick Dunn can do it ...

For C.J. Spiller, Warrick Dunn is an obvious comparison: He was listed at 5-9, 187 and relied heavily on his speed. But Spiller is slightly taller and heavier, and he's a hair faster, too. Add Spiller's return game experience to his role as a back and receiver and he's more versatile.

Dunn, though, boasted consistency and durability that Spiller hasn't demonstrated : Dunn played in 191 of a possible 202 games during his 12 NFL seasons.

North Carolina's Butch Davis, who coached against both players, says: "I have to believe that C.J. Spiller will be an incredibly dynamic player in the NFL. There are too many ways he can affect a game when he has the football. They are similar guys. When we competed against Warrick when he was at Florida State, they had a great scheme and did a great job getting him the ball. And in the NFL, he played extremely well. C.J. is a little bit bigger, and that should be an advantage for him."

Scouting report

What's to like: His No. 1 quality is versatility; he's good at everything he does. He's a good running back, a good receiver, a really good returner. The speed is dynamic; that's No. 2. He's got a really great burst and explosiveness. He's got good hands. He's pretty good in the open field.

What scares me: He's an edge guy, an outside runner. The other negative is he's been injured during his career. His injuries, unfortunately, are track-type injuries: hamstrings ... those things. He's had turf toe, which is a major concern. You take away the speed of C.J. Spiller and he becomes just a guy.

Final verdict: First round, barring any medical concerns.

frankthetank1
03-26-2010, 12:04 AM
the steelers need spiller!!! mendy is fine for short yardage if the o-line gets better in those situations. they seem to get very little push in short yardage. the bus would struggle to pick up first downs behind this o-line

RuthlessBurgher
03-26-2010, 12:04 AM
I want a big bad word fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

Mount Cody played some blocking fullback for Alabama. Perhaps we could use him to plow a hole for Mendy at the goalline and perhaps even give him a Refrigerator Perry TD run as well.

:tt2 :tt1

I heard he might even be able to play nose tackle a little bit too. Perhaps using him as a goalline FB too would ease concerns by most that he is "only" a 2 down d-lineman. I would not be opposed to taking, say, Earl Thomas at #18, then trading up in the second to get Cody as the heir apparent to Casey (they could be Weight Watcher buddies).

:wink:

ramblinjim
03-26-2010, 08:25 AM
We should put Trai Essex through a massive weight loss regimen, get him down to about 260 and teach him how to hold onto the football. Maybe he could pick up 3rd and 1 more than half of the time?

Oviedo
03-26-2010, 08:36 AM
I want a big bad word fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

Owen Schmitt was released by the Seahawks. I think he could fill that role and it would cost little to pick him up.

Sugar
03-26-2010, 09:17 AM
Spiller will be long gone by the time we pick. Loooooooong gone. I really don't care as long as we have a capable replacement.

RuthlessBurgher
03-26-2010, 09:40 AM
I want a big bad word fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

Owen Schmitt was released by the Seahawks. I think he could fill that role and it would cost little to pick him up.

Before the start of free agency, it was reported on this site that he was going to be cut, and everyone got excited. But I don't think he was ever actually cut. I never saw an actual story saying that Seattle cut him, and he is currently listed on their roster on both seahawks.com and nfl.com.

Oviedo
03-26-2010, 10:30 AM
Here would be my line of thinking about the type of back we need to get. Clearly anyone we get will be the #2 going into the season and baring injury to Mendy would remain the #2. That means he will have limited opportunities to carry the ball because of a large number of the third down plays you are going to see Mdwelde Moore because of his blitz pick up skills and receiving skills. So I think you want a #2 to that do alot of things to get value out of the game day roster spot and the pick.

So IMO you go after guys like Spiller, Jahvid Best, etc. Guys who can give you some limited quality carries BUT also can be quality returners and even split out into the slot as a receiver. That is why I have been so high on Spiller because he gives you a superior player in all of those roles.

That way you get value out of the player you pick up plus you don't dedicate a roster spot to a returner who does nothing else. Spiller is clearly the best multi-dimensional RB in this draft (probably last several drafts). Best is probably second. I think both would be good picks in Round 1 or 2 respectively but I also wouldn't hesitate to get anothe RB late in Round 6 or 7 as insurance if "The Tank" doesn't measure up.

hawaiiansteel
03-26-2010, 04:04 PM
if you read between the lines here, the Steelers may be drafting a RB higher than many people think. i also would fully expect that RB to be able to return kicks and help on special teams.



Steelers Could Look To Create Competition At No. 2 RB


At the NFL Owner's Meetings on Monday, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin hinted the team could add competition at running back behind Rashard Mendenhall. "Mewelde Moore has shown he's capable of that and he started five or six games and ran for 500, 600 yards in '08," Tomlin said. "He's shown capabilities in that area but we're not going to stop there. With the moves that we've made it's obvious that we're intent on creating competition. We believe that strengthens us. We've done that at linebacker. We've done so at safety. We've done so at wide receiver. If given the opportunity we'll continue to do so at running back."

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Read more: http://gridironfans.com/forums/latest-n ... z0jJaLj3lq (http://gridironfans.com/forums/latest-nfl-headlines/126348-steelers-could-look-create-competition-no-2-a.html#ixzz0jJaLj3lq)

steelz09
03-26-2010, 06:37 PM
I really don't see a need to draft a running back in the 1st round. First of all, we have a primary back and our 3rd down back. Secondly, we already have a bunch of weapons on offense in which Arians has a hard time to utilize.

Lastly and most importantly, there is so many very good running backs that are selected in later rounds which produce in the NFL that it's not necessary. Especially when you already have your primary and 3rd down back.

hawaiiansteel
03-26-2010, 08:19 PM
We need a guy with the speed of Chris Johnson, the power of AP, the versatility of Marshall Faulk, the elusiveness of Barry Sanders and the size of the Bus.

And hopefully we can get him in the later rounds. :D

Toby Gerhart? :lol: :lol: :lol:



Who is this guy? Stanford RB Toby Gerhart
Sporting News

Playmaking tailback or run-of-the-mill fullback?


It's not a statement about race and ability. It's a statement of fact: There hasn't been a white tailback of significance in the NFL in nearly a quarter-century.

So here is Toby Gerhart, Stanford's bruising running back with more than enough speed and athleticism—and three years of impressive college game tape—to change the way we think of the position.

"I'm not trying to be the poster child for the white running back," Gerhart says. "But the reality is, you just don't see it."

The last time a white tailback was taken in the first round of the NFL draft was in 1974, when Penn State Heisman Trophy winner John Cappelletti was selected by the Los Angeles Rams. The last white player to rush for 1,000 yards was Craig James with the New England Patriots in 1985.

And the last time NFL scouts debated a 6-foot-3, 235-pound white tailback with 4.42 speed in the 40? How about never?

"He's not a plugger," says UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel, an assistant with the Baltimore Ravens before returning to his alma mater two years ago. "He'll change a lot of minds once he gets the ball in his hands."

At this point, Gerhart is used to the doubters. When he broke the California high school career rushing record, he'd hear skepticism from other players and fans. When he was listed as a fullback by most recruiting services, when the heavyweights in the Pac-10 passed on him , when those same teams first felt Gerhart coming through the hole, he heard the same things.

"I'd hear, 'You're not bad for a white guy,'" Gerhart says. "That doesn't bother me, but there's more to me than just that."

You want more? Here's a guy who rushed for a school-record 1,871 yards and nation-leading 28 touchdowns last year while taking a 21-hour course load in management, science and engineering. He took two of his finals—he has his degree—in Orlando while participating in a college football awards banquet.

In the last two seasons, he rushed for more than 3,000 yards despite the fact everyone in the stadium knew where the offense was going.

He also started the last three years in center field for the Stanford baseball team—note to NFL scouts: You have to be able to run to play center field—and led the Cardinal to the 2008 College World Series. He would've been a high pick in the MLB amateur draft had he decided to continue playing baseball.

"He's wired with gifts from God," Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh says. "It would be foolish for anyone to think he can't play that position."

If John Riggins can do it ...

It's difficult to find a comparison for Toby Gerhart because, after all, it has been 25 years since a white tailback starred in the NFL. But Gerhart most resembles a modern-day John Riggins—he's a 230-pounder with deceptive speed, the power to plow over defenders and the bulk to absorb the punishment.

Former Redskins offensive lineman Mark May says: "Everyone makes the comparison to John Riggins. But why? Because he's a big back and runs downhill and he's Caucasian? Why not Gerald Riggs or George Rogers or Jerome Bettis? (But) John had a lot of natural speed in addition to his physical ability, much like what Toby has. If this were 1982, Toby would be a first-round pick because everyone in the NFL copies success. If Toby gets with the right team who wants to run some one-back (schemes), he'll have a very good career in the NFL."


Scouting report
An NFL scout breaks down Gerhart's game.

What's to like: He's a physical, powerful running back who runs very well between the tackles. He gets to the hole quickly. He's ready to come into the league and play early. He has better athleticism than a lot of people give him credit for. He can catch the ball out of the backfield, and he's very good in pass protection.

What scares me: He's kind of a one-speed runner. The other thing I don't know about him is his genuine interest in football. Is he one of those guys who says, "You know, I was drafted in the second round; I can go make more money in baseball"?

Final verdict: Early second round.

http://www.sportingnews.com/college-foo ... by-gerhart (http://www.sportingnews.com/college-football/article/2010-03-24/who-guy-stanford-rb-toby-gerhart)

SteelCzar76
03-26-2010, 08:35 PM
My gut is telling me that it's Gerhart in the 2nd round. (Though this will likely break Oviedo's heart) :lol:

Oviedo
03-26-2010, 09:55 PM
My gut is telling me that it's Gerhart in the 2nd round. (Though this will likely break Oviedo's heart) :lol:

Not really. That would be a decent pick but he would be able to do less than Spiller or Best in the return game and probably receiving game.

I'd have no issue with him though because we need to go RB in the first 3 rounds and that qualifies.

Shawn
03-26-2010, 10:01 PM
I think the Steelers grab Gerhart or Blount. Both guys are beasts. Let the scat backs play elsewhere. We need a guy who can move chains and can create some holes when needed. Most importantly we need a bigger back in redzone situations.

eniparadoxgma
03-26-2010, 10:16 PM
I want a big bad word fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

Mount Cody played some blocking fullback for Alabama. Perhaps we could use him to plow a hole for Mendy at the goalline and perhaps even give him a Refrigerator Perry TD run as well.

:tt2 :tt1

I heard he might even be able to play nose tackle a little bit too. Perhaps using him as a goalline FB too would ease concerns by most that he is "only" a 2 down d-lineman. I would not be opposed to taking, say, Earl Thomas at #18, then trading up in the second to get Cody as the heir apparent to Casey (they could be Weight Watcher buddies).

:wink:

Aaaaand this is where I defer to you. For some reason (perhaps my proximity to Commonwealth Stadium) I have just never gotten into college football so I have no idea who any of the above players are. :D

I'll assume Cody is about 400 though from the way you're talking about 'em. Let's get him! I'm all for some Refrigerator Perry type of goal line rock pounding. :tt2 :tt2 :tt2

papillon
03-26-2010, 10:29 PM
I want a big bad word fullback that can do double duty and pick up short yardage on his own.

Mount Cody played some blocking fullback for Alabama. Perhaps we could use him to plow a hole for Mendy at the goalline and perhaps even give him a Refrigerator Perry TD run as well.

:tt2 :tt1

I heard he might even be able to play nose tackle a little bit too. Perhaps using him as a goalline FB too would ease concerns by most that he is "only" a 2 down d-lineman. I would not be opposed to taking, say, Earl Thomas at #18, then trading up in the second to get Cody as the heir apparent to Casey (they could be Weight Watcher buddies).

:wink:

Well, if you draft Cody and you're worried that he's only a two down player, then you put him in on offense on 3rd down and now your first round drasft pick is a 3 down player. :moon :P :tt2

Pappy

Shawn
03-26-2010, 10:39 PM
Cody as a goaline fullback? :shock:

hawaiiansteel
03-26-2010, 10:41 PM
Cody as a goaline fullback? :shock:




either that or a Victoria's Secret model specializing in modeling bras...



http://larrybrownsports.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/terrence-cody-fat.jpg

hawaiiansteel
03-27-2010, 02:35 PM
FULLback. We need a fullback (a real big, nasty sledgehammer).





James Walker, ESPN.com, AFC North Blog

Draft Watch: AFC North With everyone healthy, the Steelers do not have a lot of holes beyond the obvious like offensive line and cornerback.

So let's dig deep with a covert need: Pittsburgh could use a good fullback next season. The Steelers struggled in short yardage and in the red zone, in part, because they lacked a devastating lead blocker to bust open holes in the defense. Carey Davis couldn't cut it. Converted tight end David Johnson was average but played out of position. Frank "The Tank" Summers was too green as a rookie last season. Adding to the quandary is offensive coordinator Bruce Arians' reluctance to utilize the position. Pittsburgh often uses three-receiver and single-back sets at the expense of fullbacks, and perhaps the Steelers' lack of talent at the position contributes to that. But if Pittsburgh finds a punishing run-blocker at fullback, third-and-short won't be such a daunting task next season.

hawaiiansteel
03-28-2010, 06:07 PM
everytime i saw McCluster play he was incredible, one of the quickest players i've ever seen.


2010 draft running back rankings

Posted by Evan Silva on March 27, 2010


1. Ryan Mathews, Fresno State.

The NCAA's leading rusher in 2009, Mathews is ready to break tackles in the pros, runs with the best balance of any draft-eligible back, and is built (6'0/218) to be a workhorse with homerun speed (4.45).

Draft Prediction: Texans, No. 20 overall.

2. C.J. Spiller, Clemson.

Though he doesn't project as an NFL every-down back, Spiller is a big-time play-maker (52 career touchdowns; 21 from 50 or more yards out) with game-breaking return skills and a collection of devastating open-field moves.

Draft Prediction: 49ers, No. 17 overall.

3. Anthony Dixon, Mississippi State.

Dixon lacks ideal speed (mid-4.6 forty), but is a punishing runner and possesses impressively soft hands for a back that plays in the 245-pound range.

Draft Prediction: Chargers, No. 40 overall.

4. Jonathan Dwyer, Georgia Tech.

A history of weight fluctuation, lack of pass-catching experience, and concerns about Dwyer's ability to transition from Georgia Tech's triple-option offense have hurt his stock, but the 2008 ACC Offensive Player of the Year's lower half is built for tackle-busting destruction.

Draft Prediction: Saints, No. 64 overall.

5. Jahvid Best, California.

Best has a disturbingly long injury history (season-ending back injury and concussion in 2009, plus hip, elbow and foot surgeries throughout college career), but he is the draft's purest homerun hitter, averaging a school record 7.3 yards per carry in three seasons at Cal.

Draft Prediction: Lions, No. 34 overall.

6. Toby Gerhart, Stanford.

Also a starting outfielder on the Cardinal baseball team, the 2009 Pac-10 Player of the Year is a hard-charging, no-frills runner with experience in a pro-style system and plenty of speed (4.53).

Draft Prediction: Patriots, No. 53 overall.

7. Joe McKnight, USC.

An NFL-ready third-down back, McKnight is polished in terms of blitz protection, offers top-notch receiving skills, and has the speed to go the distance (4.47) coming from USC's pro-style scheme.

Draft Prediction: Vikings, No. 62 overall.

8. Montario Hardesty, Tennessee.

Hardesty flourished in Lane Kiffin's zone-blocking scheme last year and tore up February's Combine, but underwent microfracture surgery at Tennessee and isn't a difference-making talent.

Draft Prediction: Packers, No. 86 overall.

9. Dexter McCluster, Mississippi.

Second in Ole Miss history behind only Deuce McAllister in all-purpose yards, McCluster is incredibly versatile but was injury prone early in his college career and is extremely undersized.

Draft Prediction: Steelers, No. 82 overall.

10. James Starks, Buffalo.

Starks missed his entire senior year after undergoing surgery on both shoulders, but proved he is 100 percent with a strong Combine and possesses the skill set of a future every-down back.

Draft Prediction: Seahawks, No. 104 overall.

11. LeGarrette Blount, Oregon.

Character concerns will haunt Blount on draft weekend, but he is a bone-crushing runner with surprising speed and quickness, and is built like Christian Okoye.

Draft Prediction: Chiefs, No. 144 overall.

12. Deji Karim, Southern Illinois.

The 2009 Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year, Karim missed all of 2008 with a torn patellar tendon but returned to average 7.1 yards per carry with 19 touchdowns as a senior and ran a sub-4.4 forty at his Pro Day.

Draft Prediction: Redskins, No. 135 overall.

13. Ben Tate, Auburn.

Tate ran 4.43 at February's Combine, but doesn't play nearly as fast and may get overdrafted based on impressive out-of-pads measurables.

Draft Prediction: Browns, No. 71 overall.

14. Dimitri Nance, Arizona State.

Built like a bowling ball at 5-foot-9, 225, Nance is physical between the tackles and caught an impressive 63 passes in his college career, though he averaged just 4.0 yards per carry.

Draft Prediction: Rams, No. 208 overall.

15. Joique Bell, Wayne State.

The 2009 Harlon Hill Trophy winner as Division II's player of the year, Bell scored 100 touchdowns in 44 games but lacks ideal speed (4.68) and quickness, and has lots of wear on his tires after over 1,000 career carries.

Draft Prediction: Bears, No. 218 overall.

Chadman
03-28-2010, 06:14 PM
Really torn between the need for a 'pounder' & a 'flier'.

Steelers have shown interest in Charles Scott & LeGarrette Blount as well as Spiller. Perhaps they don't know??

As a late round pick- Chadman would love the Steelers to grab John Conner out of Kentucky.

hawaiiansteel
04-09-2010, 11:06 PM
2010 NFL draft: Rating the running backs


In the second of series previewing the April 22-24 NFL draft, Chicago Tribune reporter Dan Pompei looks at poor group of running backs in the NFL draft

April 8, 2010



1. C.J. Spiller, Clemson, 5-10, 196: Spiller is a little smaller than ideal. But he is a little similar to Chris Johnson, who led the NFL in rushing yards for the Titans last year. Like Johnson, Spiller has home run speed, though he might not be as elusive a runner. He is best in the open field, but he can run inside adequately. Spiller also is a talented return man. Spiller is the best of a below average group, but in most years he would not be considered the best back in the draft.

2. Ryan Matthews, Fresno State, 5-11, 218: This is the most instinctive, natural running back in the draft, and it showed as he led the nation in rushing last season. Matthews does everything pretty well, but doesn't excel in any one area. He doesn't have top speed or unusual quickness. He has been compared to Donald Brown, the Colts' first round pick one year ago. Matthews has had some durability issues throughout his college career.

3. Jahvid Best, Cal, 5-10, 199: This speedy back can take it the distance. He also can have an immediate impact as a kick returner. Best is an elusive runner who avoids contact well. He has soft hands and will be a weapon on third down. His value between the tackles is questionable as he might not have the size to take an NFL beating as an every down back. Staying healthy was an issue in college.

4. Ben Tate, Auburn, 5-11, 220: Tate has the size and power to run inside, and the speed to run outside. His toughness enables him to break tackles. His burst is average. Tate also has good hands. He helped himself during Senior Bowl week and helped himself again with an outstanding scouting combine (4.34 40 yard dash, 40 1/2 inch vertical jump). He does not play as fast as he ran, however. Tate could be a solid special teams contributor.

5. Jonathan Dwyer, Georgia Tech, 5-11, 229: This productive college back is big and physical and can get the tough yards. Dwyer may be a first and second down back only. His receiving skills are questionable. He didn't have a great workout at the combine (4.64 40-yard dash) and some scouts question his athleticism. Dwyer's initial quickness is lacking, but he builds up speed when he is allowed to. He doesn't move very well laterally. Dwyer played in a gimmicky offense last year and some his production may have been inflated as a result.

6. Toby Gerhart, Stanford, 6-0, 231: This productive back is a load to bring down and can break tackles. He is durable enough to carry the ball 25 times a game. He can catch the ball pretty well. Gerhart has top intangibles. He has nimble feet for his size, but he probably isn't a dynamic enough runner to make many big plays in the NFL.

7. Joe McKnight, USC, 5-11, 198: This is Reggie Bush light. McKnight is very athletic and has great cutting ability. He will cause problems for defenses because very few defenders can match up with his quickness. McKnight can be a weapon in the passing game and on special teams. He probably lacks the power to be an every-down back.

8. Montario Hardesty, Tennessee, 5-11, 225: He came on strong during 2009. Before that he had a hard time staying healthy and he already has had three knee surgeries. Hardesty has enough size, speed, athleticism and instincts to be considered above average in all areas, but he does not have one trait that stands out. He has the potential to develop into a steady workhorse type. He runs hard and does not go down easily. Hardesty is a leader.

9. Anthony Dixon, Mississippi State, 6-0, 223: His stock has risen since his impressive Senior Bowl performance. A power runner who can move the pile, Dixon has subtle speed. He has some receiving skills as well. He raised some concerns with a DUI.

10. Deji Karim, Southern Illinois, 5-9, 209: He was not invited to the combine, but he had a phenomenal workout at the pro day at Northwestern. Karim is a short, compact back who can make tacklers miss. His burst and acceleration are excellent, and he can make big plays. He was very productive in college and his stock has been on the rise. He also can return kicks. He has not played against top competition and may be a little raw in terms of receiving skills and pass protection.

11. James Starks, Buffalo, 6-2, 218: His run instincts are questionable, but he flashes speed and power. He cuts well and can be difficult to tackle. He had a productive junior year, but was prevented from playing as a senior because of a shoulder injury.

12. Lonyae Miller, Fresno State, 5-11, 221: His resume is limited because he played behind Ryan Matthews. But he showed excellent athleticism in workouts and could be drafted higher than his production would suggest. He has size, speed and balance. Miller can peel off long runs. Miller also was impressive in the Senior Bowl. Some scouts question his instincts and vision.

13. Chris Brown, Oklahoma, 5-10, 210: He has shown the ability to produce when given the chance. Brown is a little limited in terms of athleticism and speed, but he seems to have a feel for running and could improve as he matures physically.

14. Joique Bell, Wayne State, 5-11, 220: He has exposed himself with substandard workouts, both at the combine and at his pro day. But Bell does have some size and vision. He was very productive at the Division II level, but he could struggle adjusting in the NFL.

15. Charles Scott, Louisiana State, 5-11, 238: This is a huge back with decent straight-line speed once he gets going. His lateral quickness is just so-so, and he does not have great burst. Scott can run with power. He played better as a junior than as a senior, when his season was cut short by a broken clavicle.

16. LeGarrette Blount, Oregon, 6-0, 241: Blount makes his living between the tackles and he can run over defenders in the open field. He is a downhill runner who lacks ideal speed, but does have quick feet. His 4.70 40-yard dash at the combine did not help his cause. Nor did his weight control issue, his conformity issues and his sucker punch during a game, which got him suspended for his senior season. He also is an inconsistent runner whose effort seems to run hot and cold. Blount has the body and ability to be an NFL player, but he has a lot of baggage.

17. Brandon Minor, Michigan, 6-0, 214: This physical runner can make some hay going downhill, but he takes some big hits because he isn't very elusive. He was a very productive college player until his career ended with a shoulder injury. He has some potential as a special teams player and has been a return man.

18. Keiland Williams, Louisiana State, 5-11, 233: He played behind Charles Scott but is an intriguing blend of size and speed. Williams can break tackles. Scouts question his vision.

19. Andre Dixon, Connecticut, 6-0, 233: He brings a combination of run skills, receiving ability and blocking prowess. Dixon does not have elite size, burst, power or speed, however. He could find a role as a third down back in the NFL.

20. Pat Paschall, North Dakota State, 5-11, 209: Paschall was a productive back against a lower level of competition. He doesn't have top vision or speed, but he seems to get the job done. He has had some off-the-field issues.

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