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Bronco Rob
02-17-2010, 05:35 AM
Combine Watch List: The top five running backs


C.J. Spiller (Clemson): Spiller is the best of this year's running back class; he seems to have it all. Acceleration, the ability to break tackles, and mobility in space that has to be seen to be believed (check out the SICK double-cut starting at 0:28 in this video). He's also a great return guy, which means that he can step in from Day 1 and contribute in a lot of different ways. He can take the ball out of the backfield on a quick pass or out in the slot or outside as well -- he added 503 receiving yards to his 1,212 rushing yards in 2009. It all added up to a career as the ACC's all-time yardage leader. It seems a bit of a stretch to compare any draft prospect to Chris Johnson of the Titans after the year Johnson had, but Spiller could have similar impact in the right offense. He has the same rare combination of track speed, versatility and surprising inside toughness that Johnson possesses. Spiller is a possible Top 5 pick and an instant difference-maker.



Jonathan Dwyer (Georgia Tech): If Spiller is the best "Lightning" back this year, Dwyer may pace Stanford's Toby Gerhart as the "Thunder." At 5-11 and 235 pounds, he puts some draft experts in mind of former Oregon star Jonathan Stewart(notes), who's currently ripping it up with the Carolina Panthers. You want consistency? How about a guy who gained 1,395 rushing yards both in 2008 and 2009? Speed with that toughness? He's run a 4.4-40. Dwyer is an underrated player with a running style more attuned to the old school than most of the players we're mentioning here, but one need look no further than the New York Giants to see what happens to a team when your power back runs out of juice. That's why Dwyer will be valued, especially if he puts up good times at a Lucas Oil Stadium track thought to be a bit slower than the one at the old RCA Dome.



Jahvid Best (Cal): Best is another jack-of-all-trades who brings Brian Westbrook(notes) to mind. Unfortunately, like Westbrook, Best has had quite the injury history. Hip, elbow, foot, back, concussion ... there are concerns there. Best missed his final four 2009 games, but when he's on the field, he's as dynamic a playmaker as there is in the college game. In 2008, his last full season, Best gained 1,580 yards on the ground -- on only 194 carries, averaging an ungodly 8.1 yards per carry. He's also got the game to make a difference as a receiver, but he might be best-served in a running back committee, which sets him down the draft boards just a bit. But if he stays healthy, he'll be a great sparkplug in the right offense. Here's a guy whose medical may be more important than his 40 time.



Ryan Mathews (Fresno State): Of all the top backs in this class, Matthews may have the best chance of putting it all together with his combination of speed and power. He reminds me of UConn's Donald Brown(notes) (now with the Colts) in his ability to set the pace on offense, gaining 1,808 yards on the ground and averaging 6.6 yards per carry. And before you dismiss his production as the product of weaker WAC opponents, consider his 234 yards against Boise State, 107 against Wisconsin, and 173 against Illinois. The NFL is trending away from the single back dominating an offense, but Matthews may be the best bet for those teams who still want a single-star backfield.



Toby Gerhart (Stanford): There were those who balked at Alabama's Mark Ingram winning the Heisman because it should have gone to Ndamukong Suh (count me among them), and there were those who wondered if Ingram, for all his excellence, was even the best back in the running. In 2009, Gerhart gained 1,871 yards on 343 carries for the Cardinal. While he has the skill set to be a primary back in the NFL, what we know about workload these days might have a team putting him in a rotation. Gerhart may quickly become one of the best red zone backs in the NFL -- last season, he almost had more rushing touchdowns (28) than negative yards (42).





http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/blog/shutdown_corner/post/Combine-Watch-List-The-top-five-running-backs;_ylt=AmmtOMUTZiwKhDE.WP1SdXlDubYF?urn=nfl,21 9952

Dr. Broncenstein
02-17-2010, 05:45 AM
I'd rather have Anthony Dixon.

Man-Goblin
02-17-2010, 07:02 AM
Worst. Running back class. Evar.

barryr
02-17-2010, 07:16 AM
I like Dwyer the best of that group. If nothing else, I think he'll stay the most healthy of this group the longest. Mathews would be my 2nd choice if looking for a RB.

Harvitz81
02-17-2010, 07:43 AM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick??? I believe in taking BPA regardless of position with your first rd pick and Buckhalter can't last forever. This league has shown that you need 2 RBs now to get through a season and Spiller can return kicks opening up Eddie to concentrate on just offense. I don't know, just a thought.

Beantown Bronco
02-17-2010, 08:39 AM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick???

Zero chance he makes it to the Broncos pick.

ward63
02-17-2010, 08:58 AM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick??? I believe in taking BPA regardless of position with your first rd pick and Buckhalter can't last forever. This league has shown that you need 2 RBs now to get through a season and Spiller can return kicks opening up Eddie to concentrate on just offense. I don't know, just a thought.

Also need interior line play! I'd much rather take Iupati at 10/11. I know it'd be high, but I'd rather have him than another RB.

SportinOne
02-17-2010, 09:43 AM
Bpa

Rohirrim
02-17-2010, 09:55 AM
I like Toby. He's a tank.

~Crash~
02-17-2010, 10:11 AM
I'd rather have Anthony Dixon.

this would be l

~Crash~
02-17-2010, 10:13 AM
Worst. Running back class. Evar.

I want to know were all the RB's have went. I guess two years ago we got one hell of a crop.

strafen
02-17-2010, 10:53 AM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick??? I believe in taking BPA regardless of position with your first rd pick and Buckhalter can't last forever. This league has shown that you need 2 RBs now to get through a season and Spiller can return kicks opening up Eddie to concentrate on just offense. I don't know, just a thought.I sure hope so. I don't think anybody in the right mind would have us picking CJ Spiller with our first pick.
McDaniels would have his ass shipped out of town on a rail...

We already spent a 1st round pick on a running back last year, remember?
This team needs helps on the defense and and an interior lineman or two.
BPA is not always a viable way to go.
We need a QB, DL, OL way before we can start thinking RB's.

Dagmar
02-17-2010, 11:16 AM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick??? I believe in taking BPA regardless of position with your first rd pick and Buckhalter can't last forever. This league has shown that you need 2 RBs now to get through a season and Spiller can return kicks opening up Eddie to concentrate on just offense. I don't know, just a thought.

Yes.

Improve the lines and we don't need to draft a RB!

Pony Boy
02-17-2010, 11:24 AM
On the NFL Network this morning they rated C.J Spiller #1 and said he was like Moreno but with speed..... That hurts........

jhat01
02-17-2010, 11:27 AM
I like Toby. He's a tank.

Hell yes. That ND game was one of the best individual efforts I have ever seen by a RB. He refused to be tackled on that day.

BroncoMan4ever
02-17-2010, 01:21 PM
I'd rather have Anthony Dixon.

agreed. some size and power to combine with Moreno and Buck. another i would be interested in would be Blount

Drek
02-17-2010, 02:59 PM
On the NFL Network this morning they rated C.J Spiller #1 and said he was like Moreno but with speed..... That hurts........

That might be one of the worst comparisons I've ever heard.

CJ Spiller is listed at 195 lbs. in college where those numbers are often padded. Knowshon Moreno weighed in at a legit 217 lbs. at the combine.

CJ Spiller is basically a chance for someone to draft another Chris Johnson, assuming Spiller stays healthy. Moreno is more like Tiki Barber.

cmhargrove
02-17-2010, 03:08 PM
Am I the only one that wouldn't mind spiller with our first pick??? I believe in taking BPA regardless of position with your first rd pick and Buckhalter can't last forever. This league has shown that you need 2 RBs now to get through a season and Spiller can return kicks opening up Eddie to concentrate on just offense. I don't know, just a thought.

Yes.

Not to be mean here, but build the lines and we are golden. If you were going to spend a high pick on a "skill player," it would be much better to choose a QB. However, the best scenario is to get some top notch players on the O-line and D-line.

bronco militia
02-17-2010, 03:11 PM
Also need interior line play! I'd much rather take Iupati at 10/11. I know it'd be high, but I'd rather have him than another RB.

I'd rather take my chances drafting OL later in the draft where guards and centers grow on trees

BroncoMan4ever
02-17-2010, 03:29 PM
Yes.

Not to be mean here, but build the lines and we are golden. If you were going to spend a high pick on a "skill player," it would be much better to choose a QB. However, the best scenario is to get some top notch players on the O-line and D-line.

i agree completely. this year i don't really care what the value of our picks are. even if Iupati is a guy who should only be drafted late in the 1st or Williams both late 1st round grades, if we take either at 10 i will be happy. we need to build up the lines.

our running game last season didn't struggle because of Moreno not being talented, because just look at the guy in college, he is one of the most talented backs to come out in recent years, it was because our line couldn't create a hole for him to exploit.

build the line and he has the talent to be undoubtedly a 1500 yards a year back

oubronco
02-17-2010, 03:37 PM
I like Toby. He's a tank.

He runs like like Hillis and we don't use him so why not take a flyer on the Blount kid in the latter rounds

KipCorrington25
02-17-2010, 07:26 PM
Worst. Running back class. Evar.

**cough** Knowshow Moreno **cough**

wandlc
02-17-2010, 11:43 PM
I wouldn't draft a RB in the first this year, but the team that drafts Ryan Matthews is getting a very good player. He runs tough up the middle and has the speed to take it to the house. He doesn't dance in the backfield and hits the hole hard. He might not clock an extremely fast 40, but ask Kyle Wilson from Boise State how hard it is to catch Matthews in the open field. I think his running style fits the pro game better than the other backs.

Killericon
02-18-2010, 12:01 AM
If we take another RB on day 1, I'll riot.