2009 NFL Draft
The Top Running Back Prospects
2009 NFL Combine Numbers
| Running Backs & Fullbacks
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Full Player Breakdowns & Analysis To Come In March
1. Knowshon Moreno, Georgia 5-11, 217
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 1
Post-Combine Skinny: Showed off that he's really, really,
really cut. The 4.63 wasn't great, but it was good enough
considering he was blazing through the short, quickness drills.
Positives: Productive, even
with everyone keying on him … Great leader, great character … A winner.
A baller. … Will be great for the passing game in time.
Negatives: Might not be an NFL
workhorse … Not big. Slight build … Not a power runner.
2. Chris Wells, Ohio State 6-1, 235
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 2
Post-Combine Skinny: For all those who weren't drooling before,
they are now. Beanie ran a sub-4.6, lifted 25 times, and broad jumped a
phenomenal 10''8". It was a special workout for a player of his size.
Positives: Ultimate size/speed combination … Can run with power and
can hit the home run … Excellent burst of a smaller back … The ultimate
“If he stays healthy” prospect.
Negatives: Durability …
Durability … Durability ... Questionable receiver … Questionable
3. LeSean McCoy, Pitt 5-11,
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 3
Post-Combine Skinny: Had the flu and didn't run. No one ran
lights out in the Combine, so the potential is there for McCoy to make a
big splash in his future worouts.
Positives: Ultra-productive …
Superior receiver … Good character. Hard worker ... Ultra-quick with
good nose for the goal line … Fast.
Negatives: Not big and won’t
get bigger … Willing blocker, but not a great one. … Ankle issues.
4. Shonn Greene, Iowa 5-11, 227
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 4
Post-Combine Skinny: No one expected a great 40 time, and few
seemed concerned with the 4.72. He's a power back, and the 10'1" broad
jump showed the power in his legs. Extremely small hands.
Positives: Dream size ..
Powerful, between the tackles runner … Workhorse. Produced against
everyone … Tough runner with good enough quickness to get by.
Negatives: Not an elusive
runner. Will get hit … One-year wonder … Not fast.
Donald Brown, Connecticut 5-10, 210
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 6
Post-Combine Skinny: He only ran a 4.51, but that didn't seem to
matter after he jumped 10'5" in the broad jump and was quick and fluid
in the drills.
workhorse … Carried the UConn offense … Great through traffic.
Negatives: Not a receiver …
Not flashy and won’t tear off too many big runs …. Not necessarily a
Andre Brown, NC State 6-0, 224
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 8
Post-Combine Skinny: He had a tremendous Combine. Not only did
he measure big, but he also ripped off a 4.49 to go along with 24 reps
and a 37" vertical. He wasn't all that quick in the drills, but he was
athletic for his size.
Big back who plays up to his size … Fantastic when healthy … Good
Durability concerns … Not a speed runner in any way … Toughness
Ian Johnson, Boise State 5-10, 212
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 19
Post-Combine Skinny: Arguably the shocker of the Combine. No
one helped himself more. Everyone likes him, but no one expected a 4.46,
26 reps, and a 4.18 in the shuttle.
Positives: Very productive … Excellent character and great teammate.
Didn’t whine about reduced role as a senior … Slippery around the goal
Negatives: Too lean …
Durability concerns. Took some big shots … Not known for being a quick runner and
doesn’t always show a burst.
Rashad Jennings, Liberty 6-1, 231
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 14
Post-Combine Skinny: The 4.6 was great for his size. More
impressively, he was one of the quickest backs in the field even at 231
pounds. And then there was the bench ... 29 times?!
Positives: Big back who’s
great around the goal line … 42 career touchdown runs. A workhorse who
carried the attack … Solid receiver for his size.
Negatives: Fumbles … Limited
in his NFL potential … Produced at Liberty. Started off at Pitt. …
Weight is a big issue.
9. James Davis, Clemson 5-11, 218
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 9
Post-Combine Skinny: Not big. the 4.6 wasn't awful, but for a back
who's supposedly has power, he only came up with 17 reps.
Positives: Hard runner with
good nose for the goal line … Faster than he showed off in college …
Not big enough to be a power back … While quick, he’s not going to make
too many defenders miss … Isn’t necessarily a workhorse.
Cedric Peerman, Virginia 5-10, 216
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 10
Post-Combine Skinny: The pet project of several scouts, the
4.45 game them ammunition with their general managers. The 27 reps on
the bench showed how incredibly strong he is for his size. Made a huge
Positives: Very productive
when healthy … Quick through the hole, and tough when hit … Could be an
elite kick returner.
Suffered a foot injury in 2007 … Not a power runner and not huge.
11. Arian Foster, Tennessee 6-1, 226
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 11
Post-Combine Skinny: Didn't run the 40 and didn't participate
in most of the drills, but he lifted an impressive 23 times.
Positives: Productive. One of
Tennessee’s most productive backs … Could flourish in a one-cut offense
… Smart with good size … Looks the part.
Negatives: Doesn’t do any one
thing well … Doesn’t necessarily run up to his size … Average speed.
Mike Goodson, Texas A&M 6-0. 208
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 12
Post-Combine Skinny: Was a bit bigger than expected. While the
4.54 was pedestrian, few were as quick or as productive in the other
Positives: Extremely quick and
great at finding the hole … Breakaway back who could be a home run
hitter … Creative runner who could be a receiver.
Negatives: Toughness question
marks … Durability. Was rarely healthy … Isn’t big.
Moore, Wyoming 5-9, 185
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 13
Post-Combine Skinny: He wasn't invited to the Combine, but he
held his own private workout outside the event and impressed everyone
who showed up by blasting out a 4.4.
Positives: Shifty speed back … Versatile. Could be used on special
teams and as a receiver … Stronger than his size might appear.
Negatives: No power in any way
… Likely a returner and a specialist. … Won’t be a No. 1 back.
Kory Sheets, Purdue
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 17
Post-Combine Skinny: Didn't lift well, but no one cared. The
4.47 and 11.7 in the 60-yard drill confirmed the athleticism everyone
wnated to see.
All-around back … Great receiver who can be used in a variety of ways …
A willing workhorse for his size.
Negatives: More of a
specialist than an every down runner … Isn’t a huge runner. Little
15. Javon Ringer, Michigan State 5-9, 205
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 7
Post-Combine Skinny: Wasn't fast enough. No one questions his
toughness, but for his size, a 4.6 was a disaster. Proved to be strong
and very quick.
Positives: A fast back who
showed tremendous workhorse ability and durability last season …
Answered all questions about goal line running … Great quickness and
Not necessarily a power runner. … Not big. Won’t be a workhorse at
next level … Was banged up before last year.
Coffee, Alabama 6-1, 209
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 15
Post-Combine Skinny: Ran well enough for his size with a 4.58
and lifted an impressive 24 times. Looked the part.
Positives: Productive star in
the SEC … Good around the goal line and between the 20s … Quick through
special in any one area … Injury concerns. Banged up throughout Bama
career … Not an NFL-caliber receiver.
17. Jeremiah Johnson,
Oregon 5-9, 209
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 5
Post-Combine Skinny: Disappointing. The 4.67 was a disaster
considering he slimmed down. Wasn't nearly quick enough in the drills to
make up for it.
Positives: Good functional speed … Tough for his size … Great burst
once he gets through a hole.
Negatives: Torn ACL in 2007 … Not necessarily a workhorse. Will
likely need to split time (but that could be a plus on the right team) …
Javarris Williams, Tennessee State
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 20
Post-Combine Skinny: Showed off nice speed and excellent
strength. The 4.52 was excellent; the 25 lifts were better.
Positives: Phenomenal athlete
… Good scorer. Wants the ball around the goal line … Good quickness
through the hole.
Not a proven receiver … Not a strong runner … Missing special
ability in any one way.
19. Marlon Lucky, Nebraska 5-11,
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 18
Post-Combine Skinny: Was fine, but didn't stand out. A decent
4.59 in the 40 didn't make up for average quickness in the drills.
Positives: Good all-around
skills … Good runner who could be a nice starter for stretches …
Not fast … Not a power runner … Durability concerns.
Tyrell Sutton, Northwestern 5-8, 211
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 16
Post-Combine Skinny: Didn't show off any speed, running a slow
4.65, but was decent in a few of the drills. He needed to be more
Positives: Great all-around back who can catch as well as run … A
stronger runner than his size … Can be used in a variety of ways.
Negatives: Injury issues. Gets
banged up too much … Not necessarily a burner for his size … Tries hard,
but isn’t a blocker.
21. P.J. Hill, Wisconsin 5-11,
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 21
Post-Combine Skinny: Didn't work out, but he was there and he
slimmed down. Small hands won't help fumbling issue.
Positives: Powerful downhill
runner … Great scorer … A closer. Great late in games … Decent receiver.
fast … Injury issues. Got dinged up over the last few years. Took a
pounding … Has to keep weight in check.
22. Marcus Thigpen, Indiana
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 22
Post-Combine Skinny: Wasn't At The Combine
speed, speed … Tremendous home-run hitter who could be a situational
star … Fantastic return potential.
Negatives: Not a power back in
any way … Not consistent. Didn’t get regular work … Mediocre blocker.
23. Kahlil Bell, UCLA 5-11, 212
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 23
Post-Combine Skinny: A near-disaster. The 4.75 40 was a draft
killer, and while he showed good quickness, he only lifted 225 pounds 15
Positives: Great athlete …
Good size who doesn’t go down easily … Good vision through the hole.
Negatives: Not durable …
Character questions … Not a blazer for his size.
Johnson, Colorado State 5-10, 219
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 24
Post-Combine Skinny: Slow. Ran a painfully sluggish 4.75 for a
workhorse … Good home-run speed once he gets into the open … Will work.
Negatives: Not an elite
athlete … Tries to run with power, but his style doesn’t necessarily
translate to the next level.
25. Aaron Brown, TCU 6-0, 195
Pre-Combine Position Rank: 25
Post-Combine Skinny: Wasn't At The Combine
Positives: When healthy, he
was extremely productive … Fast. Can be a return man. … Great cutting
durable … Purely a specialist at the next level. A third down back … Not