Scouting Report: Kareem Hunt, RB

Can this small school prospect be a big time player in the NFL?

Can this small school prospect be a big time player in the NFL?

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

I have been putting a lot of film work into the 2017 Runningback class, but after Sunday nights performance by the Patriots, I seriously considered dumping it all into the trash can and turning my attention to defensive players only. I couldn’t that until I at least wrote about Kareem Hunt. Hunt has been on my radar since 2014 when he had his breakout season for the Rockets. Hunt plays in the MAC, so he does not get a lot of national attention, but he has NFL traits. Lets take a closer look at what those traits are.

Name: Kareem Hunt

School: Toledo (SR.)

Height: 6’0″

Weight: 225 Lbs.

Positives:

Hunt has good size for the position and is physically ready for the NFL. He has good lower body power, making him tough to bring down with arm tackles. He shows good leg drive and power to fight for extra yards. He plays with a low center of gravity, giving him good balance and change of direction. Hunt shows great patience as a runner as well. He has a great ability to wait for something to open up and then shoot through it quickly. Hunt also have good vision and awareness. He rarely makes a bad decision when picking his running lanes and has the ability to sneak through even the smallest of holes in the defense. He does not have elite speed, but he the ability to break away from defenders for big gains. Hunt is a very reliable player. He only has one fumble in nearly 700 career carries, something Bill Belichick will surely love. He is not a natural receiver, but he has improved quite a bit as a Senior in that department.

Negatives:

The big question for Hunt coming into the NFL will be if he can handle the jump in competition. To the credit of the Toledo football program, they did schedule several non-conference games against power five competition, and Hunt played well in those games. Another big concern with Hunt is durability. Hunt missed multiple games in 2014 and 2015 because of injuries. He has also been the main focal point of Toledo’s offense for the past three years and has had a huge workload during that time. Something else that will need to be looked at is the fact that he missed a game for an unspecified reason that was not injury related, so off field concerns could potentially be an issue, but is not a huge concern for me personally.

Overall:

From the first time I watched Hunt play, I have had him pegged as a potential Patriot. While he may not be as physically gifted as some of the bigger names at Runningback that will be in this draft, Hunt may have one of the better all around games. Hunt fits the Patriots system very well. He is a very smart runner with great vision and balance. He would compliment the passing game really well and I think would be very successful. He may not be the type of back you build your offense around, but he is reliable and can put up numbers that make defenses have to account for him at all times. Hunt is a guy who can come in and have an impact right away. What I like about Hunt is that week in and week out, teams have focused on shutting him down, and each week, he continues to produce. I also like that in his Senior year, he has become much more involved as a pass catcher. I think he would be a great fit and I don’t think it will take a premium draft pick to get him. I think somewhere late day 2 or early day 3 is where I would target him.

 

 

 

65 Responses to “Scouting Report: Kareem Hunt, RB”

  1. EdgeX says:

    November 4 round mock:

    Trade Garoppolo for a 2nd in 2017 and 3rd in 2017 from San Francisco:

    1. Desmond King (CB)
    2. D’Onta Foreman (RB)
    2.Takkarist McKinley (DE)
    3. Montravius Adams (DT)
    3. Bucky Hodges (TE)
    3. Tony Conner (S)
    4. Julie’n Davenport (OT)

  2. EdgeX says:

    Woohoo!

    The Pat’s just locked up Marcus Cannon in a 5 year extension. Contract details not completely solid yet but I’m reading somewhere in the range of 5 years $33 million.

    There’s our RT of the future. And by the way he’s playing I can’t say I blame the Pats for locking him up now.

    I still think they should get another OT in next years draft, and maybe try to find an upgrade to RG/C (so many other pressing needs).

    But, overall this is good news!

    • steve earle says:

      Very nice mock Edge but not sure about that 2nd and 3rd for JG. Cannon’s playing really well so looking good on that side except I agree we might want to upgrade ROG position. I like the idea of Zack Bannon, USC moving inside from ROT to RG. Huge kid, smash mouth run blocker, and decent Pass blocker at RT. Moving in at pro level should make up for any deficencys in pass blocking. One of a number of possibles. Also agree we should look for a future LT and swing T in short term.

      • EdgeX says:

        You mean Zach Banner from USC? Yeah, I like his pedigree, Emily Kaplan from MMQB had a nice article on him earlier this month. Still not sure about his weight though, if he can keep that down, that’d be nice. Not sure he fits as a guard with that height. Would like to get a closer look at him come combine time tho.

        On Garoppolo – so sue me for being optimistic! šŸ˜›

        • steve earle says:

          Yea that’s the guy and right he really is tall for OG but I don’t see him as a LOT and Cannon just signed for 5 more years. Then there is that weight but when you look at the potential and the talent level down in the rounds where he is projected he looks like a decent pick. Take about 30 pounds off that massive height and he could develope into a really decent pro.

  3. steve earle says:

    You know we are all assuming BB will trade Garapollo but what if Bill sees him as the next franchise NE QB? Brady will be 40 next year, sure he’s playing great but it can’t last forever. Is it impossible keeps Jimmy through 2017 then puts a franchise tag on him for 2018? That would give 32 additional regular games for BB to make a decision as to “what’s best for the team”. Am I crazy to even think this? Maybe not!

    • Russell says:

      You could be right Steve, maybe Garoppolo would sign a friendly extension say 2-3 years.
      However Why would you draft Brissett, (3d round) if you are sold on Garoppolo??

      • steve earle says:

        Valid question Russell, but wouldn’t having a back up with a couple years experience in the system when Tom retires be the possible answer? Just thinking on my feet here but who knows?

  4. steve earle says:

    At this current point if the draft was tomorrow I would draft as follows:
    Trade JG for the best offer. (being conservative say a 3rd). Trade our 1st for a high or mid 2nd and 4th. Giving us:
    2a) from our 1st= Conor McDermott OT UCLA 6-9 310 (need a healthy Brady)
    2b) Devonte Fields OLB Lou’vl 6-4 240 (3 down Collins like) I know flags.
    3) from JG = Montavious Adams DT Aub 6-4 306 (Run stuffier, push pocket)
    3b Lewis Neal DE LSU 6-2 265 (Strong pass rusher)
    4a) from 1st= Chidobe Awuzie CB Colo 5-11 205 (Good coverage and fearless tackler)
    4b) from Sea= Damontae Kazee CB 5-11 180 (another good coverage and fearless tackler)
    4c) Zack Banner ROT/G USC 6-9 360 (smash mouth run blocker, decent pass blocker)

    • steve earle says:

      Darn computer jumped ahead. Rest of mock:
      5th) from Den= Brandon Facyson DB Vir T. 6-2 191 (? move to FS)
      6th) Jake Elliott K Memp 5-10 176 (Excellent range and accuracy)
      7th) JJ Dielman OC Utah 6-5 300 ( push Andrews)

  5. John says:

    Did a mock draft, used CBS rankings. Let me know what you think.

    1.) Takkarist Mckinley EDGE: we need an edge-rusher, clearly. Gets to the QB, natural athlete, pursues football. Would love to this happen.

    2.) Adam Bisnowaty OT: Cannon has done an excellent job, Solder has been solid. Still, though, I wouldn’t consider either to have been constantly consistent throughout their tenure’s. Either way, he’s still a good replacement if anything were to happen to either, plus he’s good value at this stage.

    3.) Elijah Hood RB: bigger back that can pass-catch. Has been productive as focal point of offense. Think it would be a good pickup.

    3.) Bryan Cox LB/EDGE: has been excellent when healthy, familar to program/team (father, Florida, etc.). Can do multiple things on defense. Think that this is fate.

    Let me know what you think!

    • steve earle says:

      McKinley’s a good OLB but I’d think a 3 down DE would be better overall for the front 7. I’m still kind of looking at Bill trading down because he does that so often and that would piot your guy off the board for us. Otherwise nice mock.

    • Russell says:

      Good looking Mock John ! I think BB may look at a true DE type, with the 1st pick.
      I would like to see BB trade, 1st pick and QB Garoppolo to the Bears for their 1st pick, and draft DE Allen or DE Barnett.

      • John says:

        There’s no way Gapp. is worth that Bears pick. Not even combined with the Patriots 1st. Allen is going in the top 5, Barrett in the top 12/15. Mckinely is roughly 10 pounds lighter than Barnett, same size as Lawson, and Harris, and a better athlete than all of them.

        I think it’s a position that should be double-dipped at, just so that there is a variety of talent. The only DE really on the roster for next year, at the moment, is Flowers. I think they are lacking athletes on the edges.

      • John says:

        I think that if you really are dreaming of a scenario where Garoppolo fetches a first rounder, you’re better off calling up the Browns and checking in on their second first round pick (16ish). I think maybe you could get that, with one of your own picks. You could definitely get their second, and something elese. They have an upcoming and coming defense, and not a terrible oline. I think they would definitely take a chance.

        They’ll take Garrett with the first overall.

        • steve earle says:

          I agree with you John the only athletic DE we currently have is Flowers (extend him) and Ninkovich has been spending half his time at OLB plus he is no spring chicken. Long is functional but even so Bill should offer him a one year deal. Both these two are turning into rotational players buy their veteran leadership is a value in itself. I also agree Cleveland may be the only real chance we have of getting a 1st with a pkg of Jimmy G and our 1st though I’m not sure that would even be the best way to go. Seems to me there is just to much talent in the 2nd-3rd rounds to go the trade up route. Bill should try for a 2nd with JG but settle for a 3rd if it’s the best he can get. Then trade out 1st for a mid 2nd and 4th this year. That would give us 2x seconds, 2x thirds and 3x forths. That could add some real talent next season.

  6. Russell says:

    Colorado CB Chidobe Awuzie 5’11” 205lbs looks very good and has moved up my Patriots draft board!
    Check out my 32 team Mock Draft at footballnation.com , Thank you

    • steve earle says:

      Yes, been seeing him mocked to us somewhere, seems a possibility I’ll have to look more at him. I’d like to see Bill take a couple CB’s not very impressed with our current CB’s after Butler. Another kid of interest to me is Damontae Kazee from San D. St. Has great numbers have you any input on him?

      • Russell says:

        Corn Elder is the guy I like best, Miami 5’10” 185 4.45 a good special teams guy as well. Awuzie is also strong special teams player, but not as fast 4.54, but maybe better in coverage then Elder.
        Don’t know much about your guy, need to look him up.

        • steve earle says:

          I’m surprised you like Elder so much. He may have some up side but has a long way to go if the film I’ve seen on him is any measure. That and his size is against him at the pro level but I’m often wrong. It looks to me that Kazee is far more polished in coverage though both share the undersized label. Level of competition may be a consideration but think Kazee has the greater potential to make it in the pros. JMO.

  7. Russell says:

    Interesting 32 team , 7 round mock draft,…..DraftSite.com You can also hold your own draft picks, interesting!

  8. Russell says:

    Remember Garoppolo is under contract until 2018. If a team gets him in a trade, he could play the year, (2017) under his rookie deal. So the cost of taking a chance on him is low, (a draft choice, or two, and a rookie contract)
    A free agent like QB Mike Glennon will cost, 3-4yrs. 18-24 mil., but you would NOT lose draft choices.
    IF I’m the Bears GM I trade for Garoppolo , trade my 1st pick to get more picks,( mid-round 1st, a mid -round 2nd, and a 3d in 2018) and draft a QB prospect I like and sign Hoyer to a 1yr deal 3-4 mil.

    • EdgeX says:

      I’d be ecstatic if the Pat’s could get a mid 1st round pick for Garoppolo.

      But I’m thinking more likely it would be a 2nd in 2017 and something else. I think it would be a disappointment otherwise.

      Question remains if they can find a trade partner.

      The Bears seem like an option, but then again, we don’t know if the current coaching staff for the Bears will be here next year. From what I’m reading John Fox and Ryan Pace are both on the Hot Seat – if they are gone does that help or hinder our trading chances? I don’t know – I think it just makes it t hat more murky.

      • Russell says:

        I agree on the coaching staff, tho I think Fox returns, Pace maybe not. Could Fox be the GM as well??
        If the Patriots lose OC, or DC to a coaching job for a QB needy team, Garoppolo could follow them ??

      • steve earle says:

        Mid 1st? I’d be ecstatic too but like you I don’t think it will happen. Unlike you I do not think even a 2nd but. Now Russell suggests if our OC or DC gets a HC job Jimmy could follow to which I agree especially if it’s the OC. As for right now everything is merky as many mocks have Cleve passing on a QB with their 1#1. Just adds a little more mud to the picture. Oh well!

    • Todti says:

      That’s why I think the Texans are going to trade for him. I wrote about that a couple weeks ago, they can get rid of Osweiler with relatively little costs after next season. So, they can afford to trade for Garoppolo and keep him and Osweiler in 2017, and then either extend Jimmy if it works out or let him go and get a compensation pick in 2019.
      I guess Belichick looks for something like 2nd in 2017 and 2nd in 2018 and maybe some lower picks or swaps depending on position in the draft order.

  9. Russell says:

    With Branch getting suspended (maybe) look for BB to grab Joe Vellano off Atlanta’s P-Squad.

    • steve earle says:

      Bringing Vellano home appeals to me too. He may not be the dominate type DT but his motor never stops and he can play the run pretty well. Good thought!
      Now as to Chicago trading for Jimmy G what do you see them giving for him? Agree Chicago should trade down their 1st for additional picks.

      • steve earle says:

        @ Russell, Okay I see further down you expect a 2nd for Jimmy. Not sure that will happen but okay I’d take that #35-37 pick. Also agree Bill more likely to want two picks over a high 1st but wouldn’t Allen look good in Pat’s blue Ha ha.

      • Russell says:

        The Patriots top 4 draft picks need to make the roster (or why pick them?) So a Garoppolo trade maybe picks in 2017/18 .
        I see the Bears giving a 3d in 2017, and a 3d in 2018…(likely). or a 2nd in 2017, and a 4th in 2018….(maybe)… or a 5th in 2017, and a 2nd in 2018…(maybe best long term)….or a 1st in 2018….(could make sense for BOTH teams)

        • Russell says:

          If I’m the Bears GM, I like 3d in 2017, and 3d in 2018. BB would like this best as well , as the Bears 3d is so early in the round, it’s like a late 2nd,(Where BB likes to pick) and a 3d next year is likely in the top 10 range in the 3d round.

        • steve earle says:

          Those picks sound reasonable to me given everything that has happened ie Jimmy being injured in the 2nd start. Now I’m sure lots of guys are looking for a high 2nd even a first which would be great just unlikely imo. But if it did happen I’m betting BB trades down a 1st or high 2nd anyway, to many holes to fill from guys not working out and FA leaving for bigger bucks.

  10. Jeff says:

    Let’s say the Pats are able to trade picks and/or players to acquire a second 1st round pick. Would anyone be shocked if they grabbed 2 DE/EDs in the first round? Unless Sheard turns it around, and even if they keep Long for another year and Flowers continues to develop, they’ll still be looking for 2 quality players at the position within a year to replace Ninkovich and Long. Personally, I haven’t seen anything from Grissom to make me think he’ll carve out a serious role on defense.

    • Russell says:

      The cost of TWO first round contracts seems more than BB would go for. A trade up maybe,
      QB Garoppolo , and the Patriots 1st to the Bears for their 1st?? Then take the prospect you want early 3d-6th in the draft??
      But either way a DE and a DT is very likely in the 2017 draft, by the Patriots. I like DE- Wormly and DT- Tomlinson.

      • Jeff says:

        I don’t know about the cost of 2 first round contracts being avoided by BB. He did it with Hightower and Jones and got great production out of those 2 picks and salary commitments and was even able to “cash out” on Jones, getting 4 solid years, then getting a second and a player back. The money that went to Hightower and Jones was a fantastic value, giving incredible production and impact for the dollars spent.

        • Ryan says:

          The player, Johnathan Cooper, is now gone from the roster. There was value in the Chandler Jones move, but why are we focused on long-term returns on these players when we are trying to win the Super Bowl now?

          The Jamie Collins move doesn’t come off as especially shrewd either, especially when we could’ve had a third-round pick in the next draft as compensation for his loss had he left in free agency.

        • Jeff says:

          Yeah, I’m not trying to give those trades high grades, just saying that overall they got a lot of value out of the Chandler Jones pick, even if they didn’t end up keeping him beyond 4 years.

      • steve earle says:

        Have to agree with Jeff on two 1st rd contracts for def front being very possible. As things going with the def right now seems to me to becoming more and more likely the focus will be on def. And speaking of moving up it may well be at least one more team ( Cards) could be in search of a QB. The more desperate more teams become the better the chance Jimmy G has of bring in a decent draft pick or a player in trade. I would be interested in Cards, Marcus Cooper CB. What do you guys think of that?

        • GM-in-Training says:

          I wouldn’t take a CB for Garappolo. 1st round picks should be spent on players with a high-probability of being an impact player for 4-5 years. If they took Cooper, they’d have to pay him pretty soon. Also DE and LB are more likely to dominate based on traits, than a CB.

        • steve earle says:

          Well yea GM but not saying JG is going to bring in a 1st rd’er. I have been saying for some time that 6 quarters of good play is unlikely to bring more then a 3rd. If desperation moves that up to a 2nd great but if not a trade for a young CB with decent up side would be next best thing.

        • Russell says:

          It makes the most sense to trade Garoppolo for the Bears 2nd pick, (# 35-37? )
          That pick would cost, 4yr 6.4 mil. and be a quality pick.
          If BB traded Garoppolo and the Patriots 1st pick (#32) for the Bears 1st (#3-6) the cost would be 4 yr. 23.4 mil. for that player.
          NOW you could get RB Cook, DE Allen, or ???
          The better value, could be Patriots 1st (4 yr. 8.2 mil.) and the Bears 2nd (4yr. 6.4 mil.) while getting TWO players.
          It all comes down to what you value a single pick , RB Cook, DE Allen, or ???
          I FEEL BB would take TWO players over just One.

        • Jeff says:

          If the Pats got that high first, they could also likely trade back and pick up more and better picks than their first and Chicago’s second. You could also see a situation where Chicago trades back and creates a lot of flexibility for a trade.

        • steve earle says:

          @ Jeff, Seems a convoluted route for pats to trade up for Chicago’s #1 then trade it back down unless Bill has specific guys he targets but in the draft he could never be assured the targeted players will actually be available at the spot he wants. I suppose it could just be to move spots up but that doesn’t seem very BB like. Plus I don’t see Chicago trading their first for Jimmy and that low a 1st from where Pat’s will be picking. Could be wrong, but.

        • Jeff says:

          @Steve Yeah it would be a bit odd. That’s why it might make more sense for Chicago to try to trade back first, then they’ll have a first and multiple picks in later rounds of the draft as well. That would mean they have enough picks to really hone in on the exact value they negotiate for Jimmy G rather than being stuck with a trade because they only have a few picks available.

        • steve earle says:

          @ Jeff, Yea Chicago trading down before making a trade or Jimmy does sound right. Good thinking. Just wonder if Chicago is thinking about it too? We are all kind of buying into Russell’s scenario, probably because he is making a habit of making good predictions.

  11. paul hayes says:

    With Collins gone and Sheard being a huge disappointment, it appears that the Pats will have to use a high pick or two to draft LB and DE. That is unless Sheard finishes strong, or BB finds another FA to fill the void. If BB addresses that position prior to the draft, I’d love to see BB draft FSU RB Dalvin Cook. He’ll be long gone when the Pats are on the clock, so BB would have to spend some draft capital to move up and get him. I know we have White and Lewis, but we don’t know if Lewis will come back 100% or if he’ll stay healthy. White could be one of the assets, used to move up. Even if Lewis is !00%, imagine the possibilities. Pats already have the 2 TE’s to create mismatches. You could actually have both Lewis and Cook on the field at the same time. Both are versatile enough to line up in the backfield, the slot or even wide. Imagine a two TE set with Cook behind TB and Lewis in motion from the slot The opposing defenses would be losing their minds.

    • steve earle says:

      Problem with spending draft capital to move up to take a RB, any RB, is Pat’s are a pass first team for as long as Brady is functioning at his high level. This years draft is RB rich plus if BB wants to have insurance for Lewis a mid round guy like Pumphry, as Mike highlighted before, could be the more cost effective alternative. For myself I’d look for a big back as insurance for Blount as the higher priority at RB because one, Blount could leave, and two White has developed very well as the 3rd down type.
      Whether or not Sheard comes on as we go forward I would not be at all surprised if BB went after both a DE and a DT in the draft. Bill likes his big run stuffing DT’s and I could see him make a move up to get one of the few good ones in this draft. Not predicting, just saying. All in all it will be an interesting post season to watch.

    • steve earle says:

      Post game it’s encouraging to see that Lewis played more then I expected and was effective. I’m not sure he was at 100% yet but that leaves room for improvement. If by some miracle Cook slid down to our first pick he would be a no brainier but not going to happen I don’t believe but your eye for talent can’t be questioned.

  12. GM-in-Training says:

    The Pats started with so many different physical types last off season, and it’s instructive to look at who stuck.

    They went through 10 or so TE, and the only ones on the roster right now are 6’6″+ and 265#+. (Ok, a 6’3″ guy was lost to IR).

    They started with a bunch of DT, and the guys that stuck are all at least 6’2″ and 315#.

    The DE that stuck are all 265#+, and generally 6’3″ (except for Flowers, who has the arms of a guy 6’7″).

    Only 1 out of 6 CB is taller than 5’11”. I think some of that is because tall CB were being overdrafted, or overpaid.

    LB range from 5’11” to 6’3″. They’ve admitted Roberts was an outlier who they kept because of his instincts in the run game…but I’m wondering if he gets exposed in the short passing game enough will they back off of that.

    Anyway, maybe next year that draft more on traits. Yes, they need a 220#+ thumper RB to backup Blount and eventually assume the role. I’d sure like to see them grab a tall LB who has also played Safety and can cover TE in the middle.

    • Todti says:

      Nice overview! I think it shows, especially on the D-Line, where and what the priorities of the coaching staff are. The CBs are very interesting; I agree that the collection is probably due to supply and costs, but they also more or less stumbled into Butler and it’s interesting to think about what they would have done without him.

      • steve earle says:

        Agree they stumbled on Butler and their approach to drafting CB as well as Saf and WR’s all seem to have that common thread. Still drafting year after year at or near the bottom of every round does make it a challenge. Still I don’t want to return to the 60’s, 70’s, or 90’s. Best hope I still think is vet FA with enough left to help for a couple years. Thus said Bill does have a pretty fair record of stumbling on low rd or UDFAs. We can hope.

  13. Russell says:

    Just did my first Patriots 2017 mock draft at footballnation.com you may need to click on my name to see it until it gets on the front page.
    Thanks for your interest,
    Russell

  14. EdgeX says:

    Mike there’s so many good RB’s coming out next year you might spend the entire off season just writing scouting reports for the RB class.

    Makes me think the Pat’s could double dip on RB in next years draft.

    • Mike Gerken says:

      I agree, in fact I thought they might double dip last year, so this year is certainly a possibility. I think the team really likes James White and what he can do. Dion Lewis is a wildcard. His talent is not in question, it is his reliability. Blount has had a career year in terms of touchdowns, but I still am not a big fan of his. I don’t think this team needs to have a guy the offense runs through, but a consistent guy that opposing teams at least have to account for.

      • Russell says:

        I think the Patriots need more of a 3 down type RB. Blount goes in the Patriots run 95%, White comes in they pass, 90 %
        A RB who can be a solid runner, yet, a good pass receiver, and A solid Blocker!! Who could be backed-up by RB guys , that speicalize in run /pass.

      • EdgeX says:

        Yeah, that’s the thing…don’t know how the Patriots feel about their RB group. They could blow up the group or keep everyone they have. Who knows!

        P.S.

        I really like Christian McCaffrey – would really make this team just that much more dynamic

  15. Mike Gerken says:

    I am glad you enjoyed the write up. I love that this RB class is so deep. It will not be necessary to take one early and still get an immediate contributor. I look forward to giving Days a better look.

  16. Russell says:

    Good report Mike! I’ve watched tape on Hunt as well. The RB class is VERY deep this year, and a 3-4th round pick will be a very strong prospect. I’m leaning towards RB Matthew Days N.C. State, 5’9″ 205 lbs. 4.46 40 yd. Inside the Tackles type runner. The Clemson game is worth a look on tape!

  17. steve earle says:

    Sounds like a kid that deserves some attention from Pat’s scouting. I particularly like where Mike sees him in the draft and his size where he could be viable relief for Blount (or if Blount signs elsewhere).
    Cudos to Mike for his two RBs presented here. Very different types but either or both might be of need next year. Who knows?

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