NFL Combine RB analysis

Here's a more intense look at the running backs and fullbacks who performed at the combine on Friday and Saturday of last week. Only nine of the 32 invitees performed in front of scouts at the RCA Dome.<p>

USC's Justin Fargas blew everyone away. He is fast, but watching him jaunt the 40 yards on the sidelines you could also see the power in his legs. After running so well Fargas did not take part in any of the drills.

Quentin Griffin also looked good running and catching the ball. Oklahoma's explosive little back displayed great footwork in all the drills, immediately cutting back through the cones and missing the tackling dummies. He also caught the ball well.

LSU's Domanick Davis ran a little slower than expected but was sensational catching the ball and looked like a natural receiver with strong/soft hands.

Stanford's Kerry Carter displayed surprising speed and excelled during the drill segment. He does not move like a 230-plus pound back.

The best fullback far and away was Chris Davis of Syracuse. A terrific athlete, Davis drilled fast, caught the ball well and was diving for receptions all day. He displayed a lot of tools.

Nick Maddox is more quick than fast, offering excellent footwork and having a solid overall session.

For as slow as he runs, Jeremi Johnson can really play when he puts his mind to it. Athletic, the big fullback effectively caught the ball in drills and really moves around the field nicely. Too bad he wastes his talent.

Several did not fare as well.

Brandon Drumm worked hard but is a marginal athlete with no speed and hands of stone.

Ovie Mughelli made a bad choice by not running (he was booed yet again) and possibly a worse choice by taking part in the drills. His hands were terrible and he lacked any balance when used as a pass receiver.

Tom Lopienski worked hard but please … what the heck was this guy thinking by not running the 40? Is taking part in a pro day at Notre Dame going to give him a better chance of breaking 5.00?

Derek Watson did not run with great balance nor does he show the great footwork. He also plays a little slow but to his credit did a fine job catching the ball. We spoke with him at length on Thursday and actually found him to be a polite young man.

Former Alabama ball carrier Santonio Beard is not a smooth, fluid back that can immediately cut it back and had difficulty catching the ball all day.

Final notes: Earnest Graham missed the combine after having surgery on his small right toe. .... Many in attendance doubt Ahmaad Galloway will return as the MRI results on his injured knee with torn ACL and MCL ligaments were not favorable.


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