Slimm's 2015 Runningbacks (Underclassmen)

Discussion in 'NFL Draft Forum' started by TedSlimmJr, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    1. Todd Gurley / Georgia / 6'1", 232

    2. Melvin Gordon / Wisconsin / 6'1", 207

    3. Tevin Coleman / Indiana / 6'0", 210

    4. Duke Johnson / Miami / 5'9", 196

    5. Jay Ajayi / Boise St. / 6'0", 220

    6. Javorius Allen / USC / 6'1", 215

    7. T.J. Yeldon / Alabama / 6'2", 218

    8. Kenneth Dixon / Louisiana Tech / 5'10", 220

    9. D.J. Foster / Arizona St. / 5'11", 205

    10t. Mike Davis / South Carolina / 5'9", 215

    10t. Dwayne Washington / Washington / 6'1", 220

    11. Devontae Booker / Utah / 5'11", 203

    12t. Alex Ross / Oklahoma / 6'1" 221

    12t. Kenyon Drake / Alabama / 6'1", 201

    [​IMG]

    (Believe me, I'm not exaggerating when I say Drake might be the fastest player in all of college football. His explosion, acceleration, and speed is extremely rare.)


    13. Jonathan Williams / Arkansas / 6'0", 222

    14. Trey Williams / Texas A&M / 5'8", 195

    15. Storm Woods / Oregon St. / 6'0", 205

    16. Josh Robinson / Mississippi St. / 5'9", 225

    17. Jamaal Williams / BYU / 6'0", 210

    18. Matt Jones / Florida / 6'2", 235

    19. Byron Marshall / Oregon / 5'10", 207

    20. Barry Sanders Jr. / Stanford / 5'10", 192

    21t. Charles Jones / Kansas St. / 5'10", 197

    21t. Michael Gordon / Arkansas St. / 5'9", 187

    22. B.J. Catalon / TCU / 5'9", 190

    23. Braylon Heard / Kentucky / 5'11", 190
    (Transfer from Nebraska. One of those talented and more highly recruited backs I spoke of that couldn't beat out Ameer Abdullah.)

    24. Shock Linwood / Baylor / 5'8", 200

    25. Tyreek Hill / Oklahoma St. / 5'10", 190

    26. Dallas Crawford / Miami / 5'10", 196
    [​IMG]

    (Probably making the switch to safety this year, but if that doesn't work out... I know what he can do at the RB position.)


    27. Travis Greene / Bowling Green / 5'10", 185

    28. DeVontae McNeal / UL-Monroe / 5'10", 209

    29. Imani Cross / Nebraska / 6'1", 225

    30. Brandon Williams / Texas A&M / 6'0", 200

    31. Keith Marshall / Georgia / 5'11", 219

    32. Jerron Seymour / Vanderbilt / 5'7", 200

    33. Robert Lowe / Texas St. / 5'10", 195

    34. I'Tavius Mathers / Ole Miss / 5'11", 189

    35. DeAndre Washington / Texas Tech / 5'8", 190

    36. Tra Carson / Texas A&M / 6'0", 230

    37. Leon Allen / Western Kentucky / 6'0", 235

    38. Brandon Wilds / South Carolina / 6'2", 222

    39. Trey Edmunds / Virginia Tech / 6'1", 216

    40. Shadrach Thornton / N.C. State / 6'1", 206

    41. Roderick Williams / Minnesota / 5'11", 235

    42. Jaylen Walton / Ole Miss / 5'8", 170

    43. Andre Given / Bowling Green / 5'9", 200

    44. Broderick Snoddy / Georgia Tech / 5'9", 190

    45. Shaun Wick / Wyoming / 5'10", 210

    46. Anthone Taylor / Buffalo / 5'10", 207

    47. Paul Perkins / UCLA / 5'11", 200






    Fullbacks:

    1. Quayvon Hicks / Georgia / 6'2", 257
    (You won't see me using the words "special talent" very often when discussing fullbacks. I'll use 'em here....
    Hicks will also play some TE in 2014 because of injuries and lack of depth at the TE position for Georgia.)


    2. Devon Johnson / Marshall / 6'1", 240

    3. Glenn Gronkowski / Kansas St. / 6'2", 240
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2015
  2. finsfanjay13

    finsfanjay13 Rookie Donator

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    Slimm: Would you say this is one of the best RB classes in a long time (provided the top end up declaring)?
     
  3. j-off-her-doll

    j-off-her-doll FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    I like where you have Yeldon, and I wouldn't be surprised to see Drake bypass him. I'm excited to watch the race between Gurley and Gordon.
     
  4. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    I think in terms of quality depth, it's shaping up to be in that category potentially. I believe you have some special talent at the top of the underclassman list, along with Senior Karlos Williams.

    I'll always believe that the 1999 RB class of Edgerrin James, Ricky Williams, Kevin Faulk, Cecil Collins, and Olandis Gary was one of the best I ever saw. What's ironic about this class is that Cecil Collins belonged at the top with Ricky Williams and E. James in terms of talent. I'll never forget watching that 230+ yard performance he put up against Auburn as a true freshman in only his 2nd or 3rd game for LSU. The balance, power, speed, and vision he displayed for a kid just removed from high school was phenomenal.

    I think the difference is that backs aren't used as much like workhorses in the NFL now like they were back then. However, Todd Gurley is as special as any RB that has come along in recent years. You can build an offense around this kid for 3-5 years if you choose to....he's that complete of a back already. Melvin Gordon is kinda like the Cordarrelle Patterson of runningbacks. Duke Johnson is truly a special back... he's not anoverhyped back coming out of the University of Miami like Lamar Miller because of the lineage of backs that the program has produced. No, Duke Johnson is at minimum twice the player that Lamar Miller was or will be.
     
  5. finsfanjay13

    finsfanjay13 Rookie Donator

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    As usual, good stuff.
     
  6. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    Yeldon has already been passed on the depth chart by the Freak Show known as Derrick Henry. It's not a stretch to think that Drake could pass him for the backup job.

    Yeldon's first problem is ball security. He's a fumble waiting to happen... and you can bet it's going to happen in a crucial moment.. inside the 10 yard line while the offense is going in to score and seize momentum of a big game. He's always had an upright running style, but Coach Burns usually remedies pad level very quickly with Bama's backs. The fact that he hasn't been able to yet with Yeldon causes concern for me. He's either uncoachable or incapable. Either way, it's not a good thing. His second problem is he runs hesitant now... doesn't explode through the hole like he did as a freshman. He's become awful in short yardage situations because he runs so upright.

    I thought it was a bad idea not to play Drake more against Auburn and Oklahoma last year. Both losses. A star was born in the Sugar Bowl (Henry) but nothing good or positive came from Drake inexplicably standing on the sidelines against Auburn.
     
  7. fininpsl

    fininpsl A True Fan

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    My big concern with Duke Johnson is durability. He's not a big back but he runs hard, and he's taken a fair amount of punishment in his first couple of years in school. He's was knocked out of several games before he went down for the season against FSU with the leg injury. When he's healthy he's elite. And a football player through and through.
     
  8. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    That's true, although durability is always a question mark with RB's due to the nature of the position... and size isn't really a factor at all. Todd Gurley is knicked up more than Duke Johnson is.

    I think you have to look at what all a back is asked to do. Duke Johnson is asked to do a lot....returning kicks, contributing to the passing game out of the backfield, and obviously running between the tackles. He's a tough kid that runs hard.

    Bottom line is that he hasn't missed any games until leg injury, which would've ended any back's season. In my opinion he's proven durable. Injuries however, are going to happen.
     
  9. fininpsl

    fininpsl A True Fan

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    He's definitely a tough running kid. I have zero reservations about his talent (most talented offensive player UM has had since Andre Johnson), and I know you are as spot on as anybody with your evaluations. And Duke WILL play hurt. With everything else I've heard through practice reports, and at game time though, I would knock him down a round or two because of the potential injury issues. Nothing I would discuss on an open public forum, but what I've seen in person on more than one occasion would give me pause on him in the NFL partly because I know he's willing to play when perhaps he shouldn't. I also could be dead wrong with what I think. It's just a personal opinion. Frankly, I hope I am wrong of course. I'm curious as to who you think he compares to in the NFL Slimm? Chris Johnson?
     
  10. MiamiDolphin618

    MiamiDolphin618 A True Fan

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    Love me some Gurley but I think I would Gordon is equally as talented. Id have them 1a 1b interchangeably. As you mentioned with Gurley, Neither of these guys fit the "RBs are a dime a dozen" cliche. I think both have the potential to be consistent 1200 yd backs in the NFL.
     
  11. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    Probably not as fast as Chris Johnson, but runs tougher. I like retro comparisons as I'm a little longer in the tooth... he reminds me of Napoleon Kaufman. Tiki Barber type back if you prefer a little more recent. He's a big play waiting to happen, especially in the passing game on screens, etc.
     
  12. fininpsl

    fininpsl A True Fan

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    Barber is a pretty interesting comparison. Duke definitely runs tough. Like a 205 lb FB at times. As for the his work in the passing game that was missing from the UM offense this past year. He only had 4 receptions. IMHO our offensive coordinator (James Coley) underutilized Duke in that manner. Jedd Fisch did a much better job getting Duke the ball in 2012. Hopefully UM does a better job of that in 2014. Always appreciate your insight. It's as good as it gets.
     
  13. j-off-her-doll

    j-off-her-doll FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    I was a kid when Kaufman was playing, but he was one of my favorite players in the NFL. I'd always get mad watching the Raiders, because Kaufman rarely got the touches I felt he deserved.
     
  14. nick1

    nick1 I am Groot Moderator Finheaven VIP

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    I love me some duke johnson
     
  15. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Premium Member

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    Blows my mind that RB James Conner and WR Tyler Boyd aren't even eligible for these underclassmen lists yet. I'm going to have some fun watching Pitt games for the next few years. Hopefully Chad Voytik ends up a decent QB so those other two can live up to their potential. He did look decent when he came in for Savage in the bowl game. I thought he looked even better than Savage in that game, actually. Savage hadn't been having a great game.
     
  16. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    They're both outstanding freshmen. Especially Boyd, he's a special talent.

    I saw so many good looking freshman all over the place last year. There's a few freaks here and there that look like they could play in the NFL after their freshman seasons in the mold of Clowney, Julio Jones, A.J. Green, Adrian Peterson, etc. I think Marquez North and Laquon Treadwell both have that look at receiver.

    Derrick Henry, Su'a Cravens, Vernon Hargreaves, Christian Hackenberg, Carl Lawson, Myles Jack, Laremy Tunsil, Chris Jones, Eddie Vanderdoes, Leonard Floyd, Dwayne Washington, O.J. Howard, and Alex Collins are all fantastic.

    Elijah McGuire for UL-Lafayette is another one. Ryan Switzer, Alquadin Muhammad, T.J. Logan, Kareem Hunt, Jared Goff, Maty Mauk, Amba Etta, Thomas Tyner...

    Florida St. had two freshman that really stood out to me in Levonte Whitfield and Nate Andrews. I watched Andrews quite a bit here in high school for Fairhope. Bama offered him but he chose FSU. Auburn has another one waiting in the wings at the QB position in Jeremy Johnson. He can play. Big, athletic kid that's going to be downright scary when he assumes the starting job for Malzahn.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 4, 2014
  17. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Premium Member

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    Yeah aside from Conner (who is mostly just fun to watch, it's still hard to get a bead on what his pro prospects really are) and Boyd (who legitimately has good pro prospects)...the guys I'd seen that were young and very good were Myles Jack of course, Chris Jones, Alex Collins, Carl Lawson and Vernon Hargreaves. I thought Nkemdiche played pretty well too.

    I remember when USF was recruiting hard for Alex Collins, I was enamored with him. Such a great blend of physical characteristics. I don't know if he was highly rated or not, but I adored him. I do remember that when his mom went crazy and withheld his letter of intent because she wanted him to stay in Florida, I was quietly hoping it somehow led to him choosing USF after all.

    Vernon Hargreaves was a no-brainer as a recruit. USF went after him hard and were in the running until near the end because of his dad. He probably made the right call going elsewhere. He was immediately better (IMO) than Purifoy, Roberson and Watkins...all of whom look a bit overrated. Hargreaves has NFL written all over him.

    Whenever I'd look at a wide receiver and I'm trying to gauge whether the corner he's beating is any good or not, I don't have time to do film study on each of those individual corners so I check ratings services to see where the corner is rated. Purifoy kept being rated very high. Yet I kept using him over and over as an example of when this wide receiver beat a corner that was supposedly high rated. Eventually it stopped meaning much because obviously the ratings were wrong about Purifoy. Now that he's actually coming out of the draft himself and I've looked at him more intently, that becomes more obvious.
     
  18. futurescout

    futurescout Well-Known Member

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    Ajayi has terrible ball security.. Gurley is Marshawn Lynch 2.0 and definitely worth a first round pick. I really like Mike Davis, surprised you have him so low.. Melvin Gordon reminds me of Jamaal Charles but his 3rd down abilities (or lack thereof) are a huge concern for me. But man, what a talented runner
     
  19. SMadison29

    SMadison29 What Sherman aspires to be

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    I love Duke. When he's in the game no matter the deficit I feel like we have a chance to come back. But durability in terms of injuries is not the issue with him. True he hadn't missed any games until he broke his leg vs FSU this year but he has left three games early in his career due to concussions (FAU & UNC this year & once his freshman year). All occurred when he attempted to block with his head down. That concussion history could push him down in the draft next year.
     
  20. Austin Tatious

    Austin Tatious Starter

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  21. j-off-her-doll

    j-off-her-doll FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    I'd say that Ajayi could improve his ball security, but terrible is harsh, and he's a dynamic, well-rounded RB. Runs with power, quickness, and speed.
     
  22. SF Dolphin Fan

    SF Dolphin Fan Seasoned Veteran

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    I will be paying a lot of attention to running backs as I think this is an area the team will address in next years' draft -- maybe early. I've seen a lot of Melvin Gordon and my only concern is receiving out of the backfield. That could drop him farther than people might anticipate. If he can improve in that area, the rest of his game is first round worthy.

    I really like Todd Gurley for his power, speed and vision. He gets a lot of yards after initial contact. Duke Johnson is an exciting prospect who I think would fit Miami's offense well.
     
  23. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    The kid I have at #10 on my list of underclassmen RB's is only a redshirt sophomore, but I think he's going to break out big for the Huskies this year. He only carried the ball 47 times last year as a backup to Bishop Sankey, averaging a little over 7 yards/carry and scored 4 TD's. Dwayne Washington is a phenomenal talent for his size, and put up some incredible numbers this spring during testing.


    40: --------- 4.44
    Vertical: -------- 36.5"
    Broad Jump: ---- 10'9-1/4"
    3-cone: -------- 6.63


    On the left in photo below...

    [​IMG]




    [video=youtube;-8_jko9QbsA]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8_jko9QbsA&feature=player_embedded[/video]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2014
  24. Tannenbombs

    Tannenbombs FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    If only Melvin Gordon had any value in the passing game...
     
  25. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Premium Member

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    That's a nice find. Some of those physical tackle breaks and stiff-arms are pretty noteworthy, and it's obvious he has legit speed.
     
  26. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Premium Member

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    Marlon Mack, who has had my juices flowing since I first heard he was considering USF and I looked at his high school tape, just sent a loud and clear message that he will be a guy you want to watch for 2017.

    That's a long way away obviously. But the true freshman ran 24 times for 275 yards and 4 TDs last night. It was against Western Carolina, but it was a hella impressive performance.

    The reason he got me all jazzed coming out of high school was because I rarely see a back with his kind of vision out of the backfield, seeing both the line of scrimmage and the linebackers before he even has the ball, while at the same time possessing such physical gifts. Speed, explosiveness, tackle breaking, he's got the full package.
     
  27. gerblack

    gerblack That Guy Finheaven VIP Donator

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    Chubbs out of UGA looked damn good as a Freshman in that Clemson Game. The RB line cont for my Bulldawgs
     
  28. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Premium Member

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    Also should be noted that James Conner of Pitt ran 14 times for 153 yards and 4 TDs against Delaware.

    He is...an animal.

    But like these other guys we're talking about, he's not draft eligible.
     
  29. Tannenbombs

    Tannenbombs FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    Gurley will be the best running back in the NFL within 3 years
     
  30. finsfanjay13

    finsfanjay13 Rookie Donator

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    Gurley is a beast. Brandon Wilds is looking pretty good in this game against Georgia. Outshining Mike Davis for sure.
     
  31. SF Dolphin Fan

    SF Dolphin Fan Seasoned Veteran

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    I could see that happening. I don't think it takes an "expert" scout to see he has unreal talent. I'd love for Miami to get him, but I think he will go earlier than where the Dolphins end up picking. We could end up with Gordon, a linebacker, corner or safety with the 1st pick.
     
  32. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    Exactly. This is one of these players I'm talking about when I say anybody should be able to watch this kid play and see that he's an exceptional talent. There's no evaluation required.

    I used to watch a back at Florida about 15 years ago by the name of Fred Taylor. That's what Todd Gurley is.
     
  33. Tannenbombs

    Tannenbombs FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    What's funny is that while commentating during the Wisconsin/LSU game Chris Spielman noted Todd McShay had Melvin Gordon as his #1 RB this year.
    I like Melvin Gordon. I think he's going to be a very good starting RB. And by no means am I claiming someone who had Blaine Gabbert rated higher than Cam Newton is an "expert" it's just funny that this guy GETS PAID to do this. Todd Gurley is a generational talent.
     
  34. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    Melvin Gordon is an outstanding talent. He should clearly be next in line behind Gurley in terms of underclassman running backs. But he's just not quite the specimen Gurley is.

    That's not a knock on Gordon because nobody else is either. Whatever team picks Melvin Gordon is going to be happy with him. Gurley's just a different type of beast with all due respect to several talented backs that I'm fond of.
     
  35. Tannenbombs

    Tannenbombs FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    Melvin Gordon is a top 10 running back in the National Football League. He's shown he has 3rd down abilities this year. RARE ACCELERATION.
     
  36. WVDolphan

    WVDolphan Banned Hammered

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    Watch out in the future(as far as NFL and draft goes) for the Perine kid from Oklahoma.

    The true freshman can play. It wasnt the yardage totals and TDs so much that impressed me, after all, stats.... But, the way he runs is impressive. He has NFL written all over him with that power at that size. He really seems to understand how to use his blockers and is not afraid to take tacklers on when he has to. He often WINS vs. tacklers. Low center of gravity with tremendous power and good speed.

    And he did break Peterson's freshman single game OU record yesterday with an impressive yardage total on 30+ carries.
     
  37. TedSlimmJr

    TedSlimmJr Hartselle Tigers (15-0) 5-A State Champ

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    Yeah we tried to recruit him here to Bama. He felt like Oklahoma was a better place for him to get playing time with Yeldon, Henry, Drake, Tyren Jones, and Altee Tenpenny already in the fold here...and we already had a commitment from Bo Scarborough.

    5'11", 243 pounds with devastating power and breakaway speed. He looks just like Jamal Lewis did as a freshman for Tennessee.
     
  38. j-off-her-doll

    j-off-her-doll FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    Didn't have a great game running the ball (speaking of his stats), but I can't see DJ Foster lasting beyond the 2nd. So many tools and such a natural athlete. Outstanding body control. What a group of RB's.
     
  39. j-off-her-doll

    j-off-her-doll FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    When healthy, I thought Fred Taylor was as good as any RB in the NFL. I was a kid back then, but I always felt his combination of burst, quickness, and power was the best in the NFL at the time.

    With Gurley, at this point, I think it's fair to ask: Is he a better RB prospect than A. Peterson? When I watch Gurley, I see M. Lynch with AP's burst, but he's smoother than either.

    M. Gordon, btw, stoned and pancaked another blitzing defender yesterday. Without adjusting value for position, I have Gurley as the best player in college football, and I have Gordon in the top 10. It's going to be interesting to see how much NFL GM's adjust on these two because of their position; it'll also be interesting to talk about how much they'll fall because of the strong RB class.

    Long season, but the 2015 class looks every bit as strong as the 2014 class.
     
  40. Tannenbombs

    Tannenbombs FinHeaven VIP Finheaven VIP

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    Gurley is a better prospect than AP IMO. I have Gurley #2 overall after Leonard and Gordon #7. That's with adjusted value. They are both that good.

    I think this class lacks the depth of the 2014 but towards the top it is very strong
     

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