2012 NFL Draft: Potential Patriots RBs

David Wilson NFL Draft

We know that David Wilson visited the Patriots, but is he a typical fit?

NEPD Editor: Doug Kyed

It may not seem like a major need, but quietly the Patriots may have a bottom ten running back stable going into the 2012 NFL Draft.

That’s why I researched what the Patriots may look for when drafting running backs in yesterday’s case study.

There are quite a few quality free agent running backs out there still, but if the Patriots do decide to draft a running back, I looked through those criteria I found yesterday to see who could be a potential fit.

The Patriots have only take seven running backs since the Belichick-era started, so these are all based off of a small sample, but here are the criteria that I used to find fits and which 2012 prospects fit those criteria (for the sake of time and sanity, I used running backs invited to the combine).

-All measured drafted running backs have been between 5’10 ¼ and 6’0 ¾” (Ballard, Bolden, Creer, Ganaway, C Gray, Miller, Morris, Pierce, Polk, Scott, Tyler)

-All measured drafted running backs have been between 210 lbs and 225 lbs (Ballard, Bolden, Creeer, J Gray, Hampton, Martin, Meggett, Miller, Morris, Pierce, Polk, Turbin, Tyler)

-Arm length ranged from 30.7” to 31.9” for measured players (Ballard, Bolden, Creer, Ganaway, J Gray, Hampton, Hillman, James, Martin, Meggett, Miller, Morris, Pead, Pierce, Polk, Rainey, Turbin, Whittaker, Wilson)

-All measured players had hands 9” or larger (Ball, Ballard, Bolden, Creer, Ganaway, Gray, Gray, Hampton, Herron, James, Martin, Meggett, Miller, Morris, Pierce, Polk, Rainey, Richardson, Turbin, Tyler, Whittaker, Wilson)

-Only one measured player had a 40 time over 4.65, so I used that as my cutoff (Only Scott and Tyler didn’t qualify. J Gray, Whittaker did not run)

-All measured players had ten yard splits of 1.60 or faster (Hampton, James, Miller, Pead, Pierce, Poole, Rainey, Richardson, Scott, Turbin, Wilson)

-Only one measured player had a 20 yard split over 2.66, so I used that as my cutoff (C Gray, Hampton, James, Martin, Meggett, Pead, Pierce, Poole, Rainey, Richardson, Scott, Turbin, Wilson)

-Only one measured player had a vertical jump under 34”, so I used that as my cutoff (Baker, Ball, Bolden, Ganaway, Herron, Hillman, James, Martin, Meggett, Pierce, Poole, Rainey, Turbin, Wilson)

-All measured drafted running backs have had broad jumps between 115” and 123” (Ballard, Bolden, Ganaway, Hampton, Herron, James, Martin, Meggett, Miller, Morris, Pead, Pierce, Poole, Rainey, Scott, Turbin, Wilson)

-All measured drafted running backs have had short shuttle times between 4.15 and 4.28 (Ball, Ballard, C Gray, Herron, James, Martin, Miller, Morris, Pierce, Polk, Poole, Rainey, Wilson)

-All measured drafted running backs had 3 cone times between 6.78 and 6.95 (Bolden, Hampton, Herron, James, Martin, Miller, Pead, Rainey)

-No drafted running back had over 19 career college starts (Ball, Creer, Ganaway, J Gray, Hampton, Herron, Meggett, Miller, Rainey, Richardson, Scott, Tyler, Whittaker, Wilson)

-The range I used for career carries was 306 to 660, only one player fell below that amount (Baker, Ballard, Bolden, Creer, Ganaway, C Gray, Hampton, Herron, Hillman, Martin, Meggett, Miller, Pead, Poole, Rainey, Richardson, Turbin, Tyler, Wilson)

-Only one player had 30 or more career college receptions (Baker, Ball, Ganaway, J Gray, Hampton, Miller, Pierce, Scott, Tyler)

-The following players were college team captains: Ballard, Bolden, Creer, J Gray, Hampton, Herron, Meggett, Morris, Poole, Richardson, Whittaker.

The following players fit ten or more of the above criteria: Jewel Hampton (under 5’10”, vertical under 34”, short shuttle just under 4.28), Doug Martin (under 5’10”, ten yard split over 1.60, over 19 career starts, was not a captain, over 30 career receptions), Davin Meggett (under 5’10”, ten yard split over 1.60, 3 cone over 7, short shuttle over 4.28, more than 30 career receptions), Lamar Miller (20 yard split unavailable, vertical under 34”, not a captain), Bernard Pierce (3 cone over 7, more than 19 career starts, not a captain, over 660 career carries), Chris Rainey (under 5’10”, under 210 lbs, not a captain, over 30 total receptions), David Wilson (under 5’10”, under 210 lbs, 3 cone over 7 seconds, not a captain, over 30 total receptions).

The following players fit six or less criteria: Edwin Baker, Cyrus Gray, Ronnie Hillman, Chris Polk, Darrell Scott, Marc Tyler.

The following players didn’t have enough measurements to qualify: Jonas Gray, Trent Richardson, Fozzy Whittaker.

Like all of these case studies, the criteria I’m going by is based off a very small sample size, but it does give us a pretty good idea of what Belichick might look for in running backs and which players may or may not be a good fit. One player that I found interesting was Jewel Hampton.

Hampton tore both of his ACLs while playing at Iowa and transferred to Southern Illinois. With Belichick’s history with Kirk Ferentz, he’ll definitely be able to get the whole story behind Hampton. He could be an interesting very late round or UDFA pickup.

It’s no surprise that Doug Martin and David Wilson fit so well, both players have had connections to the Patriots during draft season. Davin Meggett is also an interesting player since Belichick coached Meggett’s father while he was on the Giants, Patriots and Jets. We all know the connection between the Patriots and Florida Gators, so Chris Rainey is an interesting prospect as well. Bernard Pierce played at Temple under Al Golden (part of the Belichick coaching tree under Al Groh) and Steve Addazio (formerly Urban Meyer’s offensive coordinator). Lamar Miller also played under Golden for Miami.

It will be interesting to see if the Patriots do decide to draft a RB this season, if they do, Martin, Wilson, Meggett, Rainey, Pierce and Hampton all appear to be great fits.

Click here to read our running back scouting reports.

6 Responses to “2012 NFL Draft: Potential Patriots RBs”

  1. AM says:

    Not to start yet another character debate, but the team would have to be very, very comfortable with Rainey to go there. Between the stalking charge and trashing his ex-coach (perhaps deservedly in the latter case), he seems a little on the volatile side.

    But I love Tauren Poole for the Patriots–even if he doesn’t quite fit the ideal profile, he meets a number of the suggested criteria, and has both experience and potential. David Wilson would be another good fit, although I don’t know if it is worth spending a 2nd-rounder on an RB unless he is head and shoulders above everyone else remaining on the board.

    • Nuf Ced says:

      THAT GUY!!

      Poole, Poole, Poole, Poole!!! I am going to watch Shrine game again tonight

      Tony Pauline’s report from EW Shrine practice

      Tauren Poole, RB, Tennessee — Poole established himself as the top running back at the Shrine Game on Tuesday, then further affirmed this opinion in the minds of scouts today. He displayed incredible quickness and elusiveness every time he touched the ball, and also showed the uncanny knack to get past the line of scrimmage and through open running lanes without being touched by a defender. In the open field he showed a burst of speed and the ability to catch the ball. It was another terrific day for the Volunteer product.

      Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/tony_pauline/01/18/shrine.game.practice.wednesday/index.html#ixzz1sR6fybxB

  2. @59russo59 says:

    i know i’m late, but what the hell happened to LaMichael James and his stock? wasn’t he considered a sure thing 1st rounder a year ago?

  3. Jim R says:

    There is a 1,000 yard UFA rusher in that group.

  4. Dave says:

    NOOOOOO! I don’t want another running back…

  5. Wassup! says:

    Just let me say this website is top tier. No one breaks its down better than you guys when it comes to the Patriots. Keep it up, guys. Because football is my drug of choice.

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