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bluemushrooms


Joined: 10 Dec 2013
Posts: 287
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:52 am    Post subject: Draft | Running back discussion Reply with quote

Hopefully this doesn't get tossed into the NFL 2014 Draft discussion thread...I wanted to have a completely separate thread for a discussion of my favorite position: running backs Smile

Which RB would you like the Patriots to draft (assuming mid-late round picks)? Why?
Any underrated gems?

I personally love James Wilder Jr. The guy's a superb athlete, has ridiculous balance, and runs similarly to Ridley (one cut and go, good vision). He does run a little high but I think that is due to his long torso more than anything...he often lowers his shoulders before contact so I don't feel it's too much of an issue.

Another solid pick would be Andre Williams I think. He can't catch but he has decent pass blocking and he's just a better BJGE once he works a little on his ball handling.

If we wanted a RB really late in the draft someone like Antonio Andrews would be a solid pick up. He has no outstanding athletic traits but he hits the right creases and can catch the ball. From what I've seen he's similar to Bolden...very general skillset; which isn't a bad thing.

Obviously I'd like the Pats to draft someone like Tre Mason but there's not much to discuss regarding Tre because he's clearly one of the top backs in the draft...
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goldfishwars


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's face it, the weather is often terrible in New England during football season, so I presume we'll go after a bigger runner who can sustain drives in wet weather after the success of Blount in those conditions last year. Maybe a James Wilder or Tyler Gaffney, someone who'll come cheap - but can get you three yards when there's maybe only a one available.
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keysersoze3421


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've seen Carlos Hyde mocked to us, but he'd probably require a second rounder or even a move up in the second to get him.

Ideally, we can get a do-it-all back like Sankey, but he'll probably be gone too. Realistically, I think we're looking at guys like Charles Sims out of West Virginia, who is a very good pass catcher, in the third or fourth. Storm Johnson (Sankey-lite) or Marion Grice in the sixth or seventh might be good value picks too.

Hopefully Sankey or Sims is available because we need a three down back if Ridley and Vereen both leave next year. If we want a bulldozer, I like Jeremy Hill. Just don't let 14-year-old girls into the stadium. If we want a speed guy, I think I'd prefer Seastrunk.
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dhunt2402


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Storm Johnson, Devonta Freeman, Jerick McKinnon. Mid/late round is where the value is in this draft, apart from Sankey and Mason who I'd be surprised if we targeted.
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bluemushrooms


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Watched a bit of Storm and he didn't really have anything traits that appealed to me aside from decent speed and aggressive running. He got taken down pretty easily and made some bad decisions with regards to the holes he hit.

I'm all for jukey type RBs like Sankey but they're so tough to successfully convert into the NFL. IMO it's always safer to get a RB that can at least survive a North South ground pound since the O-line will have more of an impact on their performance. Guys like Sankey rely more on personal skill than the north south guys and have a hard time adjusting to NFL tackling.
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Richter


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluemushrooms wrote:
Watched a bit of Storm and he didn't really have anything traits that appealed to me aside from decent speed and aggressive running. He got taken down pretty easily and made some bad decisions with regards to the holes he hit.

I'm all for jukey type RBs like Sankey but they're so tough to successfully convert into the NFL. IMO it's always safer to get a RB that can at least survive a North South ground pound since the O-line will have more of an impact on their performance. Guys like Sankey rely more on personal skill than the north south guys and have a hard time adjusting to NFL tackling.

After contact numbers are a worthless metric for an NFL back, in my opinion. Look at the who's who of NFL backs and big time busts, and what they differ on is yards before contact. Sankey is the best back in this draft at that, owing to his vision and agility. He is head and shoulders above the other backs in this draft in terms of the traits I value in an all-around runner. If he's a third round back, no other back in this class deserves to be drafted, that's how far ahead he is in my estimation. Earl Campbell as the model for an NFL back is long, long dead, and picks spent on players like him are a waste.
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goldfishwars


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If we're just talking guys we like, Jeremy Hill is up there as a bigger, balanced runner who can hit up the hole - but there's major red flags that make him a barely draftable prospect. Tre Mason and Bishop Sankey are my guys. Mason looks small, but he's thick in the lower half and has a low center of gravity that's reminiscent of Ray Rice coming out. Love the way he seems to gain speed after he cuts, really nicely balanced runner. Sankey runs with exception vision (see Stanford game), who has very quick feet - not dissimilar to Shady McCoy in the way he makes defenders miss in short areas. Made a lot of yards behind a very average offensive line.
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mcmurtry86


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As much as people dump on this class of backs, I think it's a pretty good year to get one. There is a ton of value in the 3rd-5th round range.
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dhunt2402


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mcmurtry86 wrote:
As much as people dump on this class of backs, I think it's a pretty good year to get one. There is a ton of value in the 3rd-5th round range.


The issue is more at the top. There's only 1 or 2 guys I'd take in the top 75, though likely there'll be 4 or 5 in that range. Definitely some value to be had in the next tier though.
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bluemushrooms


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I stand corrected, Bishop Sankey is pretty nasty. Very good acceleration and solid vision...AND he knows how to utilize both.

Also, Andre Williams is a really smart guy... http://mmqb.si.com/2014/04/04/andre-williams-boston-college-nfl-draft/

He got his bachelor's in 3.5 years, is writing a book, and has written mission statements for 2 non profits he'd like to start?! In a draft full of supposedly immature players Williams is sticking out to me like a sore thumb after this article.
Also, would like to mention he had no problems catching balls at the [combine or pro day?]
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InBillBWeTrust


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Charles Sims in the 4th seems realistic and makes more sense for NE's offense since he can catch, too.
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mcmurtry86


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

InBillBWeTrust wrote:
I think Charles Sims in the 4th seems realistic and makes more sense for NE's offense since he can catch, too.


Unfortunately, I think Sims is getting a bit of momentum heading into the draft. I don't think he lasts until the late 4th.

I really like his game though, more so than some of the more highly rated guys (Mason, Hyde)
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bluemushrooms


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2014 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah I don't think Sims is going to be around.

Anyone know when Freeman might be picked up?
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keysersoze3421


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2014 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluemushrooms wrote:
Yeah I don't think Sims is going to be around.

Anyone know when Freeman might be picked up?


He's another option, and I could see him in the 4th. They might have to move up a little bit to get him though. He's kind of like a McCoy-lite or a younger Ahmad Bradshaw. He has nice hands, a similar build, and can be an effective three-down type of back.
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mcmurtry86


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2014 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

keysersoze3421 wrote:
bluemushrooms wrote:
Yeah I don't think Sims is going to be around.

Anyone know when Freeman might be picked up?


He's another option, and I could see him in the 4th. They might have to move up a little bit to get him though. He's kind of like a McCoy-lite or a younger Ahmad Bradshaw. He has nice hands, a similar build, and can be an effective three-down type of back.


Beyond the top tier of backs there isn't much separating the remaining 20 or so draftable guys. There's so little consensus that you just need to take your guy in the 3rd/4th if you have one guy graded out higher than others. Usually a team can move around and stick to their board because there's some general consensus as to who will go off the board in what range. But I don't think you can try and hope a guy you perceive to be a sleeper will fall to you.

At some point there will be a run on RB's - probably in the 3rd and 4th rounds.
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