David Cobb Player Evaluation

Scout's Dave-Te Thomas breaks down Minnesota running back David Cobb.

David Cobb is an excellent downhill runner, a pounder who runs with a low pad level and shows good leg drive and short area burst past the line of scrimmage. He is not elusive or blazing fast, but does a very good job of climbing up field, gaining at least twenty yards on seven carries as a junior and six more during his senior season.

Cobb is as smart as he is physical. A patient runner who lets his blocks develop, the only issue with his field makeup is that he needs to be more conscious of ball security. He reads defenses well and has a very good feel for cutback and inside rush lanes. He knows how to shift his weight forward after initial contact and lowers his pads well when staying in the backfield to challenge blitzers.

Cobb might lack great long distance speed, but he can generate a functional second gear when he gets in space and is a savvy runner with good hip wiggle and head fake that forces a defensive back to over-commit. He also shows good pick and slide agility that forces the second level defenders to take poor angles.

The Gophers ball carrier comes out of his stance with good spring in his steps, as he stays low in his pads with shoulders squared to navigate through trash. The thing that you notice on film is his ability to generate in-stride quickness when adjusting and changing direction. He has that short area burst, along with the ability to take a side to avoid low blocks.

Cobb is an ideal downhill runner. He shows very good plant-&-drive ability and has the ability to sink his weight and drive through most piles with above average leg power. If a defender tries to give him a side, he easily blasts through arm tackles. He runs inside with good body lean and awareness to pick and slide. He has the ability to bounce outside with a short burst, but he’s not going to win long distance races.

The senior has enough change of direction agility to make second level opponents miss, but is best served as a north-south runner than one who can impact going around the corners. He is much stronger than his weight numbers indicate, especially in the lower body. He shows good spin agility to ping-pong off tackles and does a nice job of avoiding low blocks with a nimble sidestep. He runs with good body lean and works hard to keep his feet churning while lowering his shoulder to drive through an opponent.

Cobb has just adequate quickness getting into his route, but shows good flexibility adjusting to the ball and working his way back when the pocket is pressured. With 39 catches in 38 games, he’s not really used except for dump-offs, but has good body control to adjust and get under the throws when on the move. Still, outside of flares, arrows and comebacks, his route regimen is limited.

NFL Scouting Combine measurables

5-11/229 (4.81 forty)
31 1/4-inch arm length
9 5/8-inch hands
25 reps
41.5-inch vertical jump
127-inch broad jump
6.82 3 cone drill
4.27 20 yard shuttle

Dave-Te’ Thomas is a sports writer, talent evaluator and scouting personnel consultant for a majority of teams in the National Football League. Thomas runs a scouting information service called NFL Scouting Services and produces THE NFL Draft Report, a publication provided by league headquarters to the media in preparation for the NFL Draft.


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