With the 2018 season about to kick off, who are some of the most talented draft eligible prospects in the country to look out for? Here’s my list of top five running backs. Keep in mind that these lists will be fluid as the season rolls along.
1. David Montgomery 5’11 216 Iowa State Junior
2017 Stats: 258 carries, 1,146 yards, 11 Touchdowns, 36 receptions, 296 yards
- Montgomery is the best running back in the class. He has elite footwork in both the run and pass game. Can make defenders miss with regularity. Not afraid to mix it up and run through defenses to get those extra yards. One cut and go. Lateral agility is a major plus. Speed is a question as he doesn’t really run away from defenders. Decent route runner. Ideal for a team that runs the zone blocking scheme that OL guru Alex Gibbs made famous during the Shanahan years in Denver.
2. Bryce Love 5’9 196 Stanford Senior
2017 Stats: 263 carries, 2,118 yards, 19 Touchdowns, 6 receptions, 33 yards
- Has the speed to make every run a home run. He possesses a supernatural ability to find the correct angles to take when lanes are clogged up. Footwork is a major plus. Pass blocking is above average and makes an effort at it. Took way too many losses last year. A product of the Stanford OL. Surprisingly came back for a senior season when he was one of the better backs in the country. Teams will question his desire to play due to his ambitions in the medical field.
Games Watched: 2017 vs Oregon, 2017 vs Washington
3. Rodney Anderson 6’1 219 Oklahoma RS Junior
2017 Stats: 188 carries, 1,161 yards, 13 Touchdowns, 17 receptions, 281 yards, 5 Touchdowns
- Anderson burst onto the scene last year under new head coach Lincoln Riley. He’s an excellent runner who can hit singles and doubles instead of going for the home run every time. He does have the home run in his arsenal. Lateral agility is a plus. Solid at finding the holes his OL sets up for him. Patience is a virtue and he lives up to it. Tries hard in pass pro. Doesn’t have the top end speed.
4. Justice Hill 5’10 190 Oklahoma State Junior
2017 Stats: 268 carries, 1,467 yards, 15 Touchdowns, 31 receptions, 190 yards, 1 Touchdown
- Plus agility and handles like a Kyrie Irving. Great in space. Ideal as a change of pace back at the next level. Sees the hole relatively well but doesn’t hit it on occasion. Will be relied upon heavily as the Cowboys will be breaking in a new starting quarterback. I don’t think he can handle the increase in workload.
5. Damien Harris 5’10 216 Alabama Senior
2017 Stats: 135 carries, 1,000 yards, 11 Touchdowns, 12 receptions, 91 yards
- Football IQ is very good. He’s very instinctive as a runner and knows where and how to attack a defense. Takes what he can get and goes down. Knows what he is and doesn’t deviate from that much. A power back. The biggest knock is that he doesn’t have that home run speed to run away. Straight line runner with very little lateral agility.