2019 NFL DRAFT RUNNINGBACK RANKINGS

  1. Joshua Jacobs 5’10 215 Alabama Crimson Tide (JR)

STRENGTHS: Joshua Jacobs is a complete RB who can do it all…Jacobs has impressive balance, and he rarely goes down on first contact…he has an uncanny ability to break tackles and keeps the legs churning…one of the first things that you will notice is that Joshua Jacobs is strength personified—he leaves would be defenders in his wake…has a variety of moves—a spin move, stiff arm, juke move…you wouldn’t think with his size and lack of receiving production, that Jacobs would project to be a good receiver—but that is inaccurate, he actually has great hands out of the backfield and is fully capable of being a receiving option…

WEAKNESSES: The lack of experience at the collegiate level has to be a bit concerning…why he was never given the lion share of the carries—is Jacobs best utilized in a secondary role? You have to wonder if the physical nature of his running style will have the same effect against bigger, stronger athletes at the NFL level…

COMP: Frank Gore (in his prime)

OVERALL: Joshua Jacobs is the most complete RB in the 2019 NFL Draft class. The more you watch on Jacobs, the more you come to like, and appreciate. For a prospect his size, he can do a number of things, and is quite nimble in doing so. I look at Jacobs as a prospect with untapped potential that is just scratching the surface of what he can do. He is the leader in the clubhouse for me, to be the first RB off the board in the 2019 NFL Draft.

2) Darrell Henderson 5’9 200 Memphis Tigers

STRENGTHS: Darrell Henderson is the most elusive RB in the 2019 NFL Draft class…explosive playmakers…he does a splendid job of avoiding contact at every level…quick feet—can switch gears effortlessly…great jump cut…very little wear and tear due to the low volume he received at Memphis…has breakaway speed, and the ability to keep said speed going while breaking tackles…an issue in space as a receiver…

WEAKNESSES: Darrell Henderson, like many of his contemporaries in this class, needs a lot of work on his pass blocking…many question whether Henderson can handle a full workload…a better runner outside than inside—Darrell Henderson needs to develop better patience in between the tackles…may not develop as an option around the goal-line…just average hands…

COMP: Kareem Hunt

OVERALL: Darrell Henderson is a polarizing prospect. Henderson possesses game-breaking ability—the ability to take the ball to the house every time he touches it. Many feel that he would be best utilized as a member of a Running Back By Committee, so his role at the next level remains more up in the air than other’s in this class. Speed kills, and I think Darrell Henderson is the type of weapon that defensive coordinators will have to game plan for. I think he comes off the board in the early-mid 2nd round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

3) Devin Singletary 5’9 200 Florida Atlantic (JR)

STRENGTHS: When reviewing the film on Devin Singletary, the first thing that caught my attention was his feet…fantastic feet…stops on a dime…able to juke in and out, around defenders…jump cut is violent with a high rate of success…outstanding vision…able to extend the play to the 2nd and 3rd level by making the right move and making a defender miss…a high IQ player who has a great sense for the game…does not normally get tackled on the first hit…keeps his legs churning after the initial contact…tackle breaking monster…very slippery runner…

WEAKNESSES: Devin Singletary is not a complete back as of yet…Singletary does not have the high end speed that many in league circles covet…his acceleration is also questionable…offers virtually nothing in the receiving game…his pass blocking will also need a lot of work if he wants to remain on the field in the NFL…it is fair to question whether or not he will develop as a red zone option as his short-yardage skillset is not exactly ideal…

COMP: Shady McCoy

OVERALL: Devin Singletary is a complex prospect and evaluation…for starters, anyone coming from Florida Atlantic—it is fair to question the level of competition in which he played…when you evaluate Singletary’s measurables he doesn’t exactly blow you away, so that might be somewhat concerning…however, when you watch the film—you come away with a different evaluation altogether…of all the RB in the class—Devin Singletary seems like the toughest to get your hands on, and his vision is exquisite…the more I watched, the more I liked what I scouted…I’m a big believer in Devin Singletary, and value him, where I ultimately think he will be drafted, in the 2nd round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

4) David Montgomery 5’10 220 Iowa State Cyclones (JR)

STRENGTHS: David Montgomery is a tremendous downhill runner in between the tackles…he does not go down after the first contact…a patient runner with more wiggle than you originally anticipate…plays with great pad level…great balance…David Montgomery is an underrated receiver out of the backfield…very productive player…

WEAKNESSES: Has questionable vision…tries to make the big play too many times when the simple play is the more efficient route…this leads to more negative runs than you would like to see from a prospect with his talent…David Montgomery does not have the top end speed to make him an elite prospect…is not a top-tier athlete…

COMP: James Conner

OVERALL: David Montgomery is a bit of a ‘throwback’ type of RB prospect. Montgomery has the capabilities and the skill set to be an every down RB. He may not be the best athlete at the RB position—you know what you are getting here. A player who thrives with contact and won’t necessarily have to come off of the field. A solid player, I like David Montgomery to come off the board in the 2ndround in the 2019 NFL Draft.

5) Rodney Anderson 6’0 220 Oklahoma Sooners (JR)

STRENGTHS: A fantastic blend of size and speed…plays with good vision…nice jump cut…runs well in between the tackles with the ability to break outside…good balance…has fluid hips that allows him to break tackles and remain evasive to would be tacklers…one of the better receivers out of the backfield in this entire class…a versatile prospect who could excel in virtually any offensive concept…excellent acceleration…plays with a solid base…

WEAKNESSES: His biggest weakness has to be the fact that he is coming off of an ACL injury that limited his 2018 season…not his first serious injury—so there will be durability concerns…at this point, he is a liability in pass protections—which will ultimately limit his playing time if it cannot be corrected…

COMP: Joe Mixon

OVERALL: Rodney Anderson will be a fascinating case study heading into the 2019 NFL Draft. There is no questioning his talent, and his game is tailor made for the direction of the current NFL. Rodney Anderson has the skillset to be an asset in the running game as well as the receiving game. His injury history is concerning, but he does has the benefit of not having significant wear and tear on the tires. Ultimately, I’m expecting the team that takes the plunge on him to reap the rewards, that of getting a 1st round talent in the 2nd-3rd rounds.

6) Elijah Holyfield 5’11 215 Georgia Bulldogs (JR)

STRENGTHS: Elijah Holyfield is a hammer in the rushing game…Holyfield is built sturdily and brings an element of punishing, power running to the table…he shows great vision and patience in his running…hits the hole with quickness and is tough to slow down…

WEAKNESSES: Elijah Holyfield projects to be a one trick pony type of RB…Holyfield was not asked to be a pass catcher or a blocker during his time at Georgia, so his versatility is clearly in question…Holyfield was not very productive while at Georgia—being overshadowed by more ballyhooed teammates…

COMP: Chris Carson

OVERALL: Elijah Holyfield runs as tough as any RB in the 2019 RB class. He has a long way to go in order to carve out a role for himself at the NFL level. He’s a grinder who can wind down a defense. With little wear and tear on the tires, and the feeling that there is some untapped potential here, I like Elijah Holyfield in the 3rdround in the 2019 NFL Draft.

7) Damien Harris 5’10 215 Alabama Crimson Tide (SR)

STRENGTHS: Damien Harris is a smooth runner who plays the game with a physicality rarely seen from prospects coming into the NFL Draft…punishes would be defenders at the point of contact…not a lot of wear and tear on his tires…plays the game with good balance…has the skill set to be an asset around the goal line…

WEAKNESSES: If you can get Damien Harris to go side to side you are winning the battle…does not have high end shiftiness…feet can be a bit choppy…will have to adjust to the NFL game and become a more consistent pass blocker…does not offer up much as it relates to the passing game…has not developed as a route runner or consistent pass receiver…

COMP: Devonta Freeman

OVERALL: Damien Harris has the makeup and skillset to be a ‘Thunder’ to a backfield teammates ‘Lightning’. I appreciate Harris’s game because he doesn’t bother getting too cute. He knows his strengths are running downhill and playing through contact, and Harris stays in his lane. He won’t give you the Home Run explosive plays, but that’s not his game. Damien Harris would make a great value pick in the 3rd-4th round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

8) Miles Sanders 5’11 210 Penn State Nitney Lions (JR)

STRENGTHS: Miles Sanders is a versatile back in the fact that he can hurt you as a runner, both inside and out…great one-cut and go type of back…very good feet…can stop and start on a dime with underrated quickness…powerful at the point of contact…a smooth runner who gives would be tacklers issues in the open field…

WEAKNESSES: Miles Sanders sat and played sparingly behind Saquon Barkley, so some view his lack of experience as a weakness in his game…he does not possess top-tier speed so he will not pull away from faster athletes at the NFL level…was not utilized in the passing game with a high frequency, so we are not sure of his receiving chops…will need to work on his pass blocking to get on the field at the NFL level…

COMP: Marlon Mack

OVERALL: We had seen glimpses of Miles Sanders during the Saquon Barkley era the past couple seasons, but in 2018 it was the first time we got to see him in a full-time role, and Sanders did not disappoint. Miles Sanders has a nice compliment of smoothness and power in his game, and is yet another value RB selection. I would expect to hear Miles Sanders’ name called in the 4th round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

9) Trayveon Williams 5’9 200 Texas A&M Aggies (JR)

STRENGTHS: Trayveon Williams is one of the better receiving backs in this RB class…his hands are good enough that Texas A&M thought it wise to play him at WR, as well as RB…Williams possesses good, quick feet…shifty out of the backfield…has the explosiveness to get through an opening created by his offensive line…good vision…ability to get to the next level…a good run blocker…doesn’t mind getting his nose dirty…

WEAKNESSES: Trayveon Williams is not the biggest nor strongest RB…these limitations will ultimately limit him as a pro prospect and how he can be utilized…his size isn’t the biggest issue for me, if he played more powerful…he tends to go down at the point of contact and has little tackle breaking ability…

COMP: James White

OVERALL: Trayveon Williams needs his rushing prowess to catch up with his receiving ability…at the next level—he projects to be a receiving specialist out of the backfield, preferably on 3rd down…given that he doesn’t offer much as a runner or a blocker, your best bet is to get him matched up on a LB and cause a matchup that way…there is something to his game however, so I expect him to be a value selection on the third day, likely a 4th round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

10) Benny Snell 5’10 225 Kentucky Wildcats (JR)

STRENGTHS: Benny Snell is a physical runner who excels in between the tackles…Snell gets better when there’s heightened physicality…he churns his legs and always falls forward…where many RB have to be a part of a RBBC—Snell shows the ability to carry the whole load…will lower his shoulder and get additional yards after contact…good vision…good stick arm…

WEAKNESSES: Benny Snell does not possess the short area quickness of many of his contemporaries…his athleticism is not what many would like…he can be slower than others getting to the hole…does not have the shiftiness to make would-be defenders miss…

COMP: Jordan Howard

OVERALL: Benny Snell projects to be a solid rusher at the NFL level. That being said, there’s not anything exceptional about his game. He doesn’t project as a pass catcher or blocker, so his upside is limited more to an early down thumper in a Running Back By Committee. His projection appears to be a bit more fluid, but I would expect Benny Snell to be selected in the 3rd-5th round range of the 2019 NFL Draft.