The NFL Combine is now underway and though we must wait until Saturday for the on-field testing portion of the Combine to begin, in the meantime, we can take a look at some physical measurables. Below, you'll find a handy sortable table with the numbers for the running backs group, all courtesy of Alfie Crow over at Big Cat Country.
In terms of players that can come in and back up, then eventually replace Marshawn Lynch in the lineup, I have a few guys that I'm keeping an eye on. Wisconsin's Montee Ball is one of them, and he weighed in at 214 pounds at 5'11, and he should run fairly well this weekend. I'm actually a pretty big fan of LSU's Spencer Ware for this role as well, and though he's a probable mid- to late-round pick, he's got a nice combination of size and power at 5'10, 228 pounds with big 9.58" hands.
Knile Davis and Marcus Lattimore are a couple of big backs that the Seahawks could have on their radar - both have injury concerns to deal with, but both produced in college at one point and could come with a steep discount. Miami's Mike James has good size at 5'10, 223 pounds, and is another guy to keep your eyes on. Christine Michael is one of this year's sleepers at the position and he too could play some of his best football at the next level -- Michael measured in at 5'10, 220.
The one player that I'm starting to get really intrigued with is Clemson's Andre Ellington. He's slated to be a 3rd round pick right now, and measured in at 5'9, 199 pounds. He has nice sized hands for his height (9.38") and this is a factor if he's going to catch passes out of the backfield, and it won't hurt when it comes to pass protection. Watching him on tape though, you can't help but think about his predecessor at Clemson, C.J. Spiller. Ellington has great explosiveness and vision, and knifes through traffic to pick up yardage where you think he's going to get stonewalled. He's not a big guy, of course, but he'd be perfectly suited for a zone blocking scheme where he could get outside quickly and make his cut upfield. I've seen several people now compare Ellington to Jamaal Charles, and I certainly wouldn't bat an eye to see the Hawks pick him up in the third round and have him come in to offer a great change of pace to Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin.
Let's see what Ellington runs this weekend, but he's on the top of my list right now. Guys that I like that fit that mold also include Utah State's Kerwynn Williams and FSU's Chris Thompson.
Who are you guys watching this week?
|Le'Veon Bell||Michigan State||6-1||230||9.58|
|Giovani Bernard||North Carolina||5-8||202||9.38|
|Tommy Bohanon||Wake Forest||6-1||246||10.08|
|Zach Boren||Ohio State||5-11||238||10.08|
|D.J. Harper||Boise State||5-9||211||10.28|
|Marcus Lattimore||South Carolina||5-11||221||9.78|
|Miguel Maysonet||Stony Brook||5-9||209||8.48|
|Christine Michael||Texas A&M||5-10||220||9.38|
|Lonnie Pryor||Florida State||5-11||227||8.38|
|Joseph Randle||Oklahoma State||6-0||204||8.68|
|Theo Riddick||Notre Dame||5-10||201||8.68|
|Robbie Rouse||Fresno State||5-6||190||9.28|
|Chris Thompson||Florida State||5-7||192||9.28|
|Matthew Tucker||Texas Christian||6-0||221||9.28|
|Kerwynn Williams||Utah State||5-8||195||9.18|
|Braden Wilson||Kansas State||6-3||251||10.08|
|Cierre Wood||Notre Dame||5-11||213||8.58|