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Senior Bowl Standouts: RB Edition

The team headed down to Mobile, AL for the Reese’s Senior Bowl and now we will break down the best of the best at each position. George Reed (@GeorgeReedFF) and Jarod Gray (@JarodGray) covered the RBs and those that stood out to them.

Evan Hull, RB, Northwestern
Evan Hull looked great on day 1 of practice and by day 3, nothing had changed. His size, speed, balance, and vision were constantly on display. He was nicknamed “Aquafina” because when he runs, it’s as fluid as water. Watching the 7-on-7 drills and the 11-on-11 drills, rarely has the 1st defender been able to bring him down. Hull has a 3-down skillset that should garner a lot of attention at the next level. On the 3rd day of practice, he clocked in the fastest speed of any running back, 19.78 MPH. By the end of the 3rd practice, Evan Hull was clearly the best running back on the National team. The one area he struggled with was 1-on-1 blocking.

Northwestern RB Evan Hull At Practice During The Reese’s Senior Bowl

SaRodorick Thompson, RB, Texas Tech
Thompson was called in to replace Roschon Johnson after he broke his hand. Thompson looked like a player that had missed time from practices and team meetings on Wednesday. He spent extra time with Washington Commanders running backs coach Jennifer King. I felt like Thompson spent day 1 feeling things out, doing the individual drill, the 7-on-7 drill, and the 11-on-11 drills basically going through the motions. He looked a lot like the players looked on day 1 of practice. On day two, Thompson popped. Throughout the practice, he showed solid balance, good vision, good hands, and quick bursts. He looked fantastic. In 1-on-1 blocking drills, he squared off against Daiyon Henly and shut him out. In 7-on-7 drills, Thompson burst through a hole for what would have been a touchdown. In 11-on-11 drills Thompson had not 1 but 2 receiving touchdowns. His first one was on a bootleg where QB Malik Cunningham hit him for an easy TD. Two plays later, on a scramble, Cunningham hit Thompson in the back of the endzone for touchdown number 2.

Texas Tech RB SaRodorick Thompson Putting In Work At Practice During Reese’s Senior Bowl

Chase Brown, RB, Illinois
Chase Brown is an enigma. He’s chiseled out of granite. He has the prototypical running back size at 5”9’ and 215 pounds. He doesn’t shy away from contact and makes plays that leave you wow’d (see where he obliterated Riley Moss for a touchdown). He also has fumbled the ball, been really bad overall on individual pass protection, and has had numerous dropped passes during individual drills and 1-on-1 drills. During 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills, however, Brown looks like a completely different running back and one of the best RBs in Mobile.

Illinois RB Chase Brown During Running Back Pad Drills At The Reese’s Senior Bowl Practice

Cameron Peoples, RB, Appalachian State
Cameron Peoples was not impressive at the Senior Bowl. He had some of the worst pass-pro and was beaten multiple times. He fumbled on some 7-on-7 drills. His build is thick and he looks like and unfortunately moves like a tank. Peoples needed to show out this week to help his draft stock, but he showed out in the wrong way.

Roschon Johnson, RB, Texas
Roschon Johnson looked good in pass protection during Day 1 drills and had a few plays where you could see that he had the juice. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see much from Roschon Johnson. Roschon broke his hand on the first day of practice.

Tyjae Spears, RB, Tulane
Spears showed up, showed out, and was clearly the best running back invited to the Senior Bowl. There were concerns about his weight, but those concerns were silenced when his official weight was announced at 204 pounds. Every time Spears touched the ball, you would get “oohs” and “aahs” from the stands. There was definitely a buzz around Spears from the fans, the media, and the NFL team reps. From embarrassing defenders on 1-on-1 drills to shutting down 7-on-7 practice and making the entire defense do push-ups, to long runs and receptions out of the backfield, Spears can do and did it all. Spears should be considered amongst the best running backs in the class.

Tulane RB Tyjae Spears Putting On A Clinic At The Reese’s Senior Bowl Practices

Eric Gray, RB, Oklahoma
Sooner RB Eric Gray (5’10”; 215 lbs.) came into the Senior Bowl with a little bit of noise and he did not disappoint by any stretch of the imagination, earning the RB Practice player of the week voted on by his peers from the RB group of the American team. Gray had 1,366 rushing yards and 229 receiving yards with a 6.4 yards per carry this past season. Gray turned heads all week, which was hard with as much love as his American teammates McIntosh and Spears also having very productive weeks. Gray probably won’t be selected in the first round but he helped his draft stock rise from a day 4 to a possible late day two pick.

Georgia, RB, Kenny McIntosh
There was some hype around Kenny McIntosh coming into the Senior Bowl and I believed he lived up to it. After going down with cramps on day 1 of practice, he came back on days 2 and 3 with a vengeance. He has great hands, good vision, and doesn’t shy away from contact on pass protection drills. He looked shifty on several plays. McIntosh broke several big plays during 7-on-7 drills and 11-on-11 drills.

Chris Rodriguez, RB, Kentucky
Rodriguez is a bruiser. He was the best pass blocker between the American and National teams. Rodriguez runs a little top-heavy but possesses decent footwork and balance. He can catch the ball out of the backfield, but it’s not something he excels at. He breaks through tackles and is not easy to bring down.


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