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2023 NFL Scouting Combine RB Positional Analysis

(Bijan Robinson / RB / Texas)

2023 NFL Scouting Combine Positional Analysis

Running Backs

High Risers

Bijan Robinson / Texas

5110 / 215 / 9.6” hands

The top RB prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft entering the season is the same prospect who enters draft season as #1 – Robinson. And nothing that happened at the combine in Indianapolis did anything to dispel that notion. Robinson ran an extremely good 40-yard dash time (4.46) recorded a 37” vertical jump and a 10”4” broad jump. During field drills, Robinson proved to be smooth, fluid, and sudden with a great forward lean while maintaining balance. Additionally, he catches the ball easily and is a quality route runner out of the backfield. There is a lot of debate about the value of RBs in today’s NFL. But no matter the offense, someone has to run the football. Robinson is a complete RB with a full complement of skills to work in any offensive system. Robinson is a top 10 talent in this draft.

Jahmyr Gibbs / Alabama

5091 / 199 / 9.2” hands

Going into the combine in Indianapolis this month, it was suspected that Gibbs would excel in the athletic drills. And to say that he met those lofty expectations would be an understatement. Gibbs looked like the second coming of Alvin Kamara blazing a stunningly fast 40 time (4.36) and cleared 33.5” on the vertical jump. During field drills, he displayed loose hips, quick feet, an explosive burst, and reliable hands. Gibbs could sneak into the back half of the first round in April and should be off the board no later than the end of round 3.

Chase Brown / Illinois

5095 / 209 / 10” hands

Chase Brown had a fantastic last season at Illinois, finishing second in the nation with 1,643 yards rushing. Brown may lack great size but he has a solid, athletic build and a good set of tools – 4.43 40-yard dash, 10’7” broad jump and a 40” vertical jump. Possesses explosive qualities and a sudden burst. He exhibits loose hips and light feet. Brown could be a difference maker at the NFL level. He should be drafted late on day 2 or early on day 3 in April.

Disappointing Performance

Tavion Thomas / Utah

6000 / 237 / 9.2” hands

Thomas was solid during his field drills and his inside running skills are already NFL quality. And it should be noted that his performance during the timed and measured tests were what about expected of him (4.74 40-yard dash, 30” vertical, 9’ 10” broad jump). It is just in a draft class loaded with top-end RB talent, Thomas’ pedestrian numbers will likely leave him undrafted, although his power will be tantalizing to teams that like to feature the inside running game.

What? Guess I Need to Watch More Film…

Roschon Johnson / Texas

6000 / 219 / 9.5” hands

Bijan Robinson’s teammate, Roschon Johnson, proved why, as a career backup, he got invited to the combine. Not only does Johnson offer excellent size for an NFL RB, but Johnson offers NFL-level skills and attributes, with little wear and tear, to intrigue teams. Johnson recorded a very good 40-yard dash time for his size (4.58), reached 31.5” on the vertical jump, and a 10’ 2” broad jump. Johnson runs with a good forward lean and is capable of moving the ball between the tackles and gaining tough yards.

(Jahmyr Gibbs / RB / Alabama)


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