Griffin broke onto the scene during his freshman year and was the second leading rusher for the program with 570 net yards, three touchdowns with a long run of 62 yards. He also caught 10 passes for 162 yards, one TD and had a long pass play covering 49 yards.
In other words, this guy can go the distance everytime he touches the ball. He he could be the fast football player in the country, well at least until Devon Allen comes back from the Olympics, so it is no wonder Griffin draws attention from opposing defensive coordinators when he takes the field.
Griffin came to Oregon in January 2015 following a stellar career at McEachern HS in Powder Springs, Georgia. He was one of the top backs in the country in 2014 but was side track with an injury for part of the year. Arriving on the Oregon campus in January 2015, he joined his older brother Ty, who intitally came to Oregon from Georgia Tech as a quarterback, but now is a defensive back.
Headed into fall camp, Taj Griffin is noticiable bigger. He's gone from a very generous listed weight of 175 to 180 at the start of fall camp. Last year he was, what could characterized as a skinny, fast kid, but this August, he has grown into a much more studly frame. In other words, he won't go down when some bigger guy pushes him.
Fast and and strong.
And the scary part, is he's one of four running backs who can also score everytime they touch the ball.
Joining Griffin are Royce Freeman, who could be a Heisman Trophy candidate this year; Kani Benoit, a bit slower in the open field but fast enough to break away and could easily start at a ton of different programs in FBS. Then there is Tony Brooks-James who, in a track meet might beat Griffin, Freeman and Allen in a 40-yard dash.
For Duck fans it is almost mind boggling how talented and good this group is.
Last year as a group they rushed for over 3,500 yards of net rushing, 34 touchdowns and an average of 279.92 ypg rushing. For those wondering, that is bigtime rushing!
Perhaps it should be mentioned that that total also included rushing stats for two other players -- wide receiver Bralon Addison with 84 net rushing yards and two TDs on fly sweeps, or straight hand offs, and another guy named Charles Nelson, who was playing defensive back, slot receiver, punt returner and kickoff return specialist.
Nelson is still on the squad of course. Defensive backs coach @John Neal said about Nelson that Nelson could score touchdowns "catching passes, returning interceptions, running the ball, returning punts and kickoffs."
That's a big endorcement but this year, Nelson is strictly on the offensive side of the ball -- except for returning punts and kicks.
Maybe we'll see Griffin doing some that too?
After all, Nelson could use a break every now and then.
If the need arises, Griffin is ready, willing and able to answer the call.