The New Super Sixteen Running Backs For The 2012 NFL Draft!
By Max Emfinger
Trent Richardson is a phenomenon at running back and he also has been a Super Combine Freak ever since he was running wild at Pensacola Escambia. Also remember, there was another famous running back from that same high school. That player is in the NFL Hall of Fame and Emmitt Smith is his name.
In 2009 against Arkansas, Richardson made one of the best runs of the season as he rebounded off five or six defenders and raced 52-yards for a touchdown. Also in 2009, Richardson came off the bench in the 2009 BCS National Championship and rushed for 109-yards and two touchdowns as the Crimson Tide beat The Texas Longhorns for the National Championship.
In game #7 in 2011, Richardson rushed for 183-yards on 17 carries and scored four touchdowns in leading the undefeated Crimson Tide to a 52-7 victory over Ole Miss. The Crimson Tide fell behind 7-0 in the first quarter and only led 17-7 at halftime, but they demolished the Rebels by scoring 35 points in the second half. Richardson scored both Tide touchdowns in the first half on runs of 8 and 7 and then scored on another 8-yarder and a beautiful 76-yard run that was a Heisman-Run Special.
On that 76-yard touchdown, Richardson went from sideline to sideline and he left some Rebel under garments on the field. Richardson also caught two passes for 30-yards, giving him 213-yards of total offense as the Crimson Tide (7-0, 4-0, SEC) scored the most points in an SEC game since 1990.
Richardson finished the 2011 season with 1,583-yards rushing, which is second in Crimson Tide history. He also averaged a sporty 131.9-yards per game rushing. Richardson won the 2011 Doak Walker Award as the #1 Running Back in the Country and he finished third in the Heisman Trophy.
Richardson had a meniscus scope just before the 2012 NFL Super Combine and he was not able to participate. On March 29, at Alabama Pro-Day, Richardson shocked a lot of the NFL Scouts when he ran a 4.42 at 228-pounds. He also ran a 4.52 and the NFL Scouts gave him a legit 4.48 clocking. Richardson also did 25 reps of 225 on the bench press. There are a lot of linemen that can’t do 25 reps of 225 on the bench press.
Look at the photo of Trent Richardson (5-9, 228, 4.48) at the top of this page and then picture yourself as a middle linebacker that is about ten-yards away from Richardson after he has just been handed the football. Most defenders in high school and there were some in college that were looking to get out of his way, instead of trying to make the tackle. Richardson has the #1 MEARS RATING of all of the running backs in the 2012 NFL Draft. His 1,986 MEARS RATING is currently in the Top 10 in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Although Trent Richardson is the #1 running back, there are about 10 or 11 running backs who have a chance to be drafted in the first two or three rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft. Out of those, David Wilson of Virginia Tech is probably the #2 running back and he is also another Super Combine Freak.
Wilson, who is also a junior, only started one season in 2011, but he was outstanding in every game as he rushed for 1,709-yards on 290 carries and scored 9 touchdowns. Wilson also had 21 catches for 126-yards and one other touchdown. One of his typical games was against Appalachian State when he ran for three touchdowns and rushed for 162-yards as the Hokies beat Appalachian State by a 66-13 score.
Wilson rushed for career-high 175-yards and returned two kickoffs for 38-yards, giving him 213-yards of total offense as the #10 Hokies eliminated #20 ranked Georgia Tech from the ACC race with a 37-26 victory.
In high school at Danville Washington, Virginia, Wilson rushed for 2,291-yards and scored 35 touchdowns as a senior; averaged 11.4 yards per carry; and was selected as the Virginia Gatorade Player of the Year. Wilson also returned 59 kickoffs for 1,285-yards and another touchdown. In 2011, Wilson was selected as the ACC Player of the Year.
At the 2012 NFL Super Combine, Wilson (5-10, 206, 4.41) did not run because of a previous injury, but he was very impressive at Virginia Tech Pro-Day when he did a 41-inch vertical jump; did a great 130 Standing Broad Jump; did a 4.12 in the pro-shuttle; and ran a 4.35 and a 4.4 in the forty. Wilson has recorded an outstanding 1,952 MEARS RATING.
Doug Martin is a very versatile athlete who played both defensive back and running back, but he finished his Boise State career with 47 career touchdowns. Martin also rushed for 2,500-yards in the last two seasons, along with having 600-yards in receiving. A very important stat is that he also had 11 tackles on Special Teams.
Martin played his high school football at Stockton St Mary’s, California and he was not heavily recruited. Martin rushed for 1,950-yards and scored 18 touchdowns as a junior in high school, but he only had one offer, Martin joins the Ty Detmer, Barry Sanders, and Drew Brees One Offer Club who only had one offer. All four players made the best of their one offer. Detmer and Sanders were Heisman Trophy Award Winners and Brees was a Heisman Award Runnerup.
Martin (5-9, 223, 4.43) was really outstanding at the 2012 Scouting Combine when he posted a 4.43 in the forty; did a 36-inch vertical jump; did a great 4.16 in the pro-shuttle; had a great 120 Standing Broad Jump; and did an impressive 28 reps of 225 on the bench press, This gave Martin a great 1,926 MEARS RATING.
Robert Turbin rushed for 1,517-yards and scored 19 touchdowns in 2011 and with this outstanding season, he was selected as the WAC Player of the Year. Turbin also led Utah State to their first Bowl Game since 1997.
In the tenth game of 2011, Turbin rushed for a career-high 208-yards and three touchdowns in a 49-42 double Overtime victory over Idaho; including two of his touchdowns in Overtime and his other score came on an 80-yard run in the second quarter.
Turbin finished his Utah State Career with 3,315-yards rushing and scored 40 rushing touchdowns. The versatile Turbin also caught 67 passes for 845-yards and another 11 scores. Turbin was given two Medical Red-Shirt years in both 2007 and 2010 and in 2011, he was playing in his fifth season as a Red-Shirt junior before he opted for the 2012 NFL Draft.
At the 2012 Scouting Combine, Turbin did a 36-inch vertical jump; ran a 4.31 in the pro-shuttle; did a 122 Standing Broad Jump; and did 28 Reps of 225 on the bench press; giving Turbin an 1,914 MEARS RATING.
The next four running backs for the 2012 NFL Draft are outstanding and they have outstanding potential. Those four include Lamar Miller of Miami, Bernard Pierce of Temple, Isaiah Pead of Cincinnati, and Michael Smith of Utah State.
Miller might be the most recognizable of the four as he was a Super Star coming out of Miami Killian High School. As a senior in high school, Miller rushed for 1,749-yards and scored 22 touchdowns, while averaging 8.1-yards per carry.
Miller did surprise a lot of people, including the NFL Scouts, when he declared to opt for the 2012 NFL Draft as a Redshirt Sophomore. The 2011 season was his second year to play and he rushed for 1,272-yards and scored 9 touchdowns. Miller finished his two-year Miami career with 1,918-yards and 15 touchdowns.
Miller rushed for 188-yards on 26 carries as the Hurricanes beat Ohio State on National TV by a 24-6 score. Miller ran 54-yards on the first play from scrimmage, piling-up 116-yards in the first quarter alone. Miller was also a great All-Purpose back as he caught 28 passes for 181-yards and he ran 15 kickoffs for another 376-yards. One of his greatest runs was in that second game of the 2010 season against Ohio State when he ran the kickoff 88-yards for a touchdown.
Miller (5-11, 212, 4.4) did a 33-inch vertical jump at the 2012 Super Combine, but improved that to a 35.5 at the Miami Pro-Day. Miller also did a great 4.08 in the pro-shuttle and a 120 Standing Broad Jump, giving him a 1,904 MEARS RATING.
Bernard Pierce has had a sensational three-year career at Temple and he finished his junior year with 157-yards and three touchdowns against Army in the 2011 New Mexico Bowl. For the 2011 season, Pierce rushed for 1,481-yards and scored a school record 27 touchdowns, giving him a three-year career record 53 touchdowns rushing and one more receiving for a record 54 touchdowns.
Pierce (6-0, 218, 4.38) is a big running back, but he is not a power back. With his great speed and quickness, Pierce uses these talents to finesse defenders and then outrun them to the goal-line.
At the 2012 Scouting Combine, Pierce was outstanding with a 36.5-inch vertical jump; a 4.28 in the pro-shuttle; and a 123 Standing Broad Jump. Pierce ran a 4.49 in the forty at the Scouting Combine, but he improved this time at the Temple Pro-Day with a great 4.38. With these measurables, Pierce had a 1,901 MEARS RATING.
Isaiah Pead of Cincinnati finished a fabulous career by being named as the Senior Bowl MVP. In his four years for the Bearcats, Pead rushed for 3,288-yards on 545 carries for a nice 6.01 yards per carry average.
One of the qualities that the NFL Scouts love about Pead is his versatility and great athleticism. Late in his career, Pead was asked to return punts and he did a great job. Another thing that the NFL Scouts love about him is his great cut-back ability.
Pead (5-10, 197, 4.41) was impressive at the 2012 Scouting Combine and did not participate in the Cincinnat Pro-Day. At the Combine, Pead ran a 4.41 in the forty, but he was given a legit time of 4.47. He also did a 33-inch vertical jump; and a 116 Standing Broad Jump; giving him an 1,894 MEARS RATING.
One of the surprise running backs is Michael Smith of Utah State. Smith, who is a Junior College transfer, is on the same team with Ronnie Turbin and he got his chance when Turpin had an ACL injury. In 2008, Smith rushed for 1,002-yards as a sophomore in Junior College.
Smith ran for 124-yards and a long touchdown to lead the North Team to a 24-19 victory over the South Team in the Players All-Star Classic at War Memorial Stadium. Smith had an electrifying 80-yard touchdown run in the third quarter to bring the score to 17-16 and a North Team lead.
Smith was not invited to the 2012 Scouting Combine, but he really put on a show for the NFL Scouts at the Utah State Pro-Day with some outstanding measurables. His most impressive measurable and one that got all of the NFL Scouts attention was his forty times when he clocked a 4.34 and a 4.33. His 40.5-inch vertical jump; 126 Standing Broad Jump; and 23 reps of 225 on the bench press gave him an outstanding 1,894 MEARS RATING.
In the first game of the season in 2011, Vick Ballard had a great “Break-Out” game against Memphis. In that game, Ballard rushed for 166-yards on only 10 carries and scored three touchdowns on runs of 66, 46, and 1-yard; while averaging 16.6 yards per carry as the Bulldogs beat Memphis by a 59-14 score.
Ballard followed that game with 135-yards at Auburn. Ballard scratched and clawed the rest of the year to get over 1,000-yards after the Egg Bowl. But back on fresh legs, Ballard went for a career-high 180-yards against Wake Forest in only 14 carries and was voted again with the Game MVP Award. He did fumble in the 1st half, but quickly redeemed himself with a 60-yard touchdown run on the next series. The best run, though, was the electrifying 72-yard touchdown early in the 4th quarter. Both of the Ballard runs were the longest in MSU bowl history.
Ballard played in the 2008 Max Emfinger’s All-American Bowl Game Classic and he came to our first practice without a single scholarship offer. He was outstanding in practice and in the game. Ballard ended-up going to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and as a sophomore, he made Junior College All-American as he rushed for 1,728-yards and scored 22 touchdowns.
Ballard (5-10, 219, 4.56) then signed with Mississippi State and became a two-year starter for the Bulldogs. In 2011, Ballard rushed for 144-yards and scored two touchdowns in a 31-3 victory over cross-state rival Ole Miss and it extended their three-game winning streak in the Annual Egg Bowl.
Ballard capped a brilliant two-year Bulldog career in the Music City Bowl when he rushed for 180-yards as the Bulldogs beat Wake Forest by a 23-17 score. In that game, Ballard received the Music City Bowl MVP Award. One of his AABG teammates was Wake Forest offensive guard Joseph Looney who is also in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Ballard ran a disappointing 4.65 at the 2012 Scouting Combine, but he ran a 4.56 at the Mississippi State Pro-Day. At the Combine, Ballard recorded a great 4.19 in the pro-shuttle; a very good 36-inch vertical jump; a nice 115 Standing Broad Jump; and a great 23 reps of 225 on the bench press, giving him an 1,851 MEARS RATING
Three of the greatest All-Purpose Backs in the country and who will be All-Purpose Running Backs in the NFL are LaMichael James of Oregon, Chris Rainey of Florida, and Jeff Demps of Florida.
LaMichael James had a typical game in the second game of 2011, when he rushed for 69-yards and a touchdown; had two catches for 56-yards and a touchdown; and returned a punt 56-yards for another touchdown, giving him 181-yards of total offense in their 69-20 victory over Nevada.
Then in the third game, James rushed for 204-yards on 12 carries and scored three touchdowns on runs of 1, 90, and 50-yards as the Ducks beat Missouri State 56-7. James also caught one pass for 27-yards, giving him 231-yards of total offense.
James (5-8, 194, 4.35) was coming off of an elbow injury, and it did bother him in the forty at the the 2012 Scouting Combine, when he ran a 4.45, but he came back and had an outstanding Oregon Pro-Day. At Oregon Pro-Day, James, who is known for his speed, ran a 4.29 and a 4.36 in the forty; but the NFL Scouts agreed on a 4.41 legit clocking. Since James was hurting at the 2012 Scouting Combine, I’m throwing out the 4.45 that he ran. Then if you average the other three times at Oregon Pro-Day (4.41, 4.29, 4.36) James had a legit 4.35. James also did a 35-inch vertical jump; a 4.12 in the pro-shuttle; and a 123 Standing Broad Jump; giving him an 1,883 MEARS RATING.
In the first game of the season, All-Purpose Back Chris Rainey scored three touchdowns in three different ways, including a 14-yard catch; a 14-yard run; and he blocked a punt and scooped-up the football and ran 22-yards for his third touchdown as the Gators beat Florida Atlantic 41-3. Rainey also rushed for 77-yards.
Then in the second game, Rainey rushed for 119-yards on 16 carries and a touchdown; he also caught 3 passes for 43 yards, giving him 162-yards of total offense as they beat UAB 39-0. After two games, Rainey was the Gators leading rusher with 198-yards and leading receiver with 110-yards.
Rainey (5-8, 180, 4.35) had a great 2012 Scouting Combine as he shocked the NFL Scouts with his 3.93 in the pro-shuttle. His 4.35 in the forty was also impressive and he also recorded a 4.31. Rainey did a modest 36.5-inch vertical jump and a modest 120 Standing Broad Jump as he recorded an 1,855 MEARS RATING.
Jeff Demps says that he is going to by-pass the 2012 NFL Draft in favor of the Olympics and Professional Track. With his outstanding speed, don’t be surprise if an NFL Team Drafts him so they will have the rights to him if he decides to change his mind after the Olympics. Demps (5-8, 191, 4.26) won the national title in the 60-meter dash at the 2010 indoor NCAA Championships, with a 6.56 timing. Demps also has the Junior World Record in the 100-meters with a 10.1 clocking.
In the fourth game of the 2011 season, Demps carried the football 10 times for 157-yards, against Kentucky, while averaging 15.7-yards per carry and scoring two touchdowns. Demps and teammate Chris Rainey are both 4.3 type guys who are usually the fastest players on the football field when they are in the game. Florida scored three touchdowns in a 4:31 span of the first quarter, and Demps iced the game with an 84-yard touchdown run as #15 Florida (4-0, 2-0 SEC) beat Kentucky 48-10 for the Gators’ 25th straight win in the series.
In this Kentucky game, Demps showed the kind of speed that the Gators have become known for as he raced by defenders on his long touchdown run. It was Florida’s longest touchdown run since the Emmitt Smith 96-yard touchdown run against Mississippi State in 1988. “I just tried to run a little faster,” Demps said. “As soon as you see the hole, you get through it. You’ve got your lane, and you take it and go score.” Rainey also rushed for 105-yards on 15 carries in that game. The Gators finished with 405 yards rushing.
In the ninth game and Homecoming Game, Demps rushed for a career-high 158-yards on 23 carries and scored two touchdowns in Florida’s 26-21 win against Vanderbilt. Demps caught two passes for 14-yards and returned two kickoffs for 41 yards, giving him 213-yards of total offense. This was his seventh 100-yard effort of his career and third of this season (105 vs. Florida Atlantic; and 157 vs. Kentucky).
Demps made a 52-yard run for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter that put the Gators ahead, 26-14, with 2:13 left in the game. For the season, Demps is 8th in the SEC in all-purpose rushing, with 850-yards on 89 plays. He has 494 rushing yards on 70 carries and two touchdowns.
Demps (5-8, 191, 4.26) did not participate in either the 2012 Scouting Combine or Florida Pro-Day, but based on his previous measurables, Demps would record an 1,850 MEARS RATING.
Chris Polk broke or tied a number of school records as the Huskies were victorious over Arizona by a 42-31 score. Polk became the first player in Washington history to have 100-yards rushing and receiving in the same game. Polk finished the night with 144-yards on 34 carries and he caught four passes for 100-yards, giving him 244-yards of offense. Polk scored five touchdowns (four rushing, one receiving) to tie the Washington school record for touchdowns in a game. Polk also got his 18th career 100-yard rushing game to set a new record. Polk joined Napoleon Kaufman as one of just two players in Washington history to rush for 1,000 yards in three seasons.
Polk (5-11, 215, 4.45) became the seventh player in PAC-10 history to rush for over 4,000 career yards as he finished with 4,049 yards which put him second behind Kaufman who was the @1 Draft Choice of the Oakland Raiders in 1995.
At the 2012 Scouting Combine, Polk ran a disappointing 4.57, but at the Washington Pro-Day, he recorded a 4.45 and a 4.49. His 31.5 vertical jump was also a little disappointing as was his 112 Standing Broad Jump and 16 reps of 225 on the bench press. With some disappointing measurable, Polk recorded an 1,840 MEARS RATING.
Edwin Baker of Michigan State was pretty sensational against Michigan as he rushed for 167-yards on 26 carries and scored a touchdown in the Spartans huge 28-14 victory. Michigan State beat Michigan for the fourth straight year, and this one may have been the most important. Starting QB Kirk Cousins set an improbable record of four straight wins against the Michigan Wolverines. The Spartans got two touchdown passes from Cousins, and a defense that suffocated Michigan QB Denard Robinson, who only had 42-yards rushing on 18 carries and one touchdown.
Baker (5-9, 204, 4.43) rushed for 2,293 career yards on 462 carries and a 4.96 yards per carry average. Baker was selected to the All-BIG-10 Team as a sophomore, but he was a reserve as a junior in 2011, before he opted for the 2012 NFL Draft.
Baker was invited to the 2012 Scouting Combine, but he only put-up modest measurables, including a 4.53 in the forty; a 4.31 in the pro-shuttle; and a 111 Standing Broad Jump. He just did not impress the NFL Scouts, but he did much better at the Michigan State Pro-Day when he recorded a 4.43 in the forty and with a great 4.35.
Baker also improved his Standing Broad Jump from a 111 to a much better 119 and recorded 20 reps on the 225 bench press, giving him an 1,830 MEARS RATING.
Cyrus Gray (5-10, 190, 4.4) was a real Super-Star coming out of Desoto, Texas high school. Gray rushed for 1,975-yards on 248 carries and scored 28 touchdowns as a senior. With a great 7.96 yards per carry average, Gray had scholarship offers from Texas A&M, Florida, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Kansas, California, Colorado, and Louisville.
In 2008, Gray set a school record in kickoff yardage with 1,169-yards, including a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown against Oklahoma. In that game, Gray recorded 294-All-Purpose yards and was Selected as the Big-12 Player of the Week. In 2009, Gray also ran a kickoff 99-yards for a touchdown against Colorado.
Gray was invited to the 2012 Scouting Combine and since he already run a 4.4 in the forty in high school and had demonstrated great speed with two long kickoff returns for a touchdown, it would seem that Gray might be one of the fastest running backs in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Gray (5-10, 206, 4.47) ran a very modest 4.47 in the forty and did not participate in the pro-shuttle. Then at the Texas A&M Pro-Day, he recorded an outstanding 4.12, but decided not to participate in any other measurables. With a 118 Standing Broad Jump; a 32.5 vertical jump; and 21 reps of 225 on the bench press, Gray recorded an 1,822 MEARS RATING.
Gray may be the “Sleeping Giant” with as much raw potential as any player in the 2012 NFL Draft.
The New Super Sixteen Running Backs For The 2012 NFL Draft!
By Max Emfinger
1. Trent Richardson – Alabama – 1,986 MEARS
2. David Wilson – Virginia Tech – 1,952 MEARS
3. Doug Martin – Boise State – 1,926 MEARS
4. Robert Turbin – Utah State – 1,914 MEARS
5. Lamar Miller – Miami – 1,904 MEARS
6. Bernard Pierce – Temple – 1,901 MEARS
7T. Isaiah Pead – Cincinnati – 1,894 MEARS
7T. Michael Smith – Utah State – 1,894 MEARS
9. LaMichael James – Oregon – 1,873 MEARS
10. Chris Rainey – Florida – 1,855 MEARS
11. Vick Ballard – Mississippi State – 1,851 MEARS
12. Jeff Demps – Florida – 1,850 MEARS
13T. Ronnie Hillman – San Diego State – 1,840 MEARS
13T. Chris Polk – Washington – 1,840 MEARS
15. Edwin Baker – Michigan State – 1,830 MEARS
16. Cyrus Gray – Texas A&M – 1,822 MEARS
2012 DRAFT: http://maxemfinger.sharepointsite.com/Lists/2007%20Database/2012%20NFL%20DRAFT.aspx?SortField=WorkFax&SortDir=Desc&View=%7b511B2429%2d968B%2d459C%2d942E%2d75820B1576AF%7d