#34, Albert Young, RB
(5082, 207, 4.48-4.60) Iowa
Notes: Born 2/25/85, in Moorestown, N.J., where he attended Moorestown High School and was coached by Frank Paris and Russ Horton. Rushed for 2,180 and scored 32 touchdowns senior season. Concluded his prep career as the all-time leading rusher in South New Jersey with 5,411 yards despite missing a few games in his junior year with a sprained MCL. Parents are Darlene Young and Carson Miller.
College: Redshirted in 2003 after breaking his fibula during summer workouts. Played in 2 games (starting one) in 2004; rushed 27 times for 92 yards (3.4 avg.) with 2 touchdowns and caught 2-22, before suffering a torn ACL in his right knee which required surgery. Came back to start 11-of-12 games in 2005; led the Big 10 in rushing 249-1,344-8 (5.4 avg.) and caugh 24-244 (10.2 avg.). Started 11-of-13 games in 2006; rushing 178-803-7 (4.5 avg.) and catching 30-225-1 (7.5 avg.) while missing two games with a strained left MCL. Fully healthy as a senior (2007), he started all 12 games and rushed 206-968-6 (4.7 avg.) and caught 23-212-1 (9.2 avg.). Rushed for 3,173 yards on 660 carries (4.8-yard avg.) and 23 touchdowns, while catching 79 passes for 705 yards (8.9 avg.) and 2 TDs in four seasons with the Hawkeyes. Had a career-best 202 yards rushing on 38 attempts against Northwestern in 2005. One of three juniors selected to 2006 Leadership Council. Health and Sport Studies major.
Pro: Signed by the Vikings as an undrafted rookie free agent following the 2008 NFL Draft.
Reportedly ran in the 4.5-second range during his Pro Day workout.
Positives: Productive runner-receiver when healthy. Bleeds yardage. Well-built and strong for his size. Built low to the ground with excellent balance. Tough and determined. Good vision, instincts and ability to pick a hole and dart through small creases within the defense. Productive receiver in the passing game with soft hands. Can pick up the blitz on pass protection. Good effort as a blocker.
Negatives: Lacks great size and does not show much magic or true breakaway speed. Lacks explosiveness and cannot pull away from pursuit. Drops some passes. Hasn't been utilized in the kick return game or on special teams. Durability is a concern.
Summary: A good training camp running back who faces a numbers challenge to crack the Vikings roster, but he could easily compete for a spot on the practice squad if he performs well during training camp.
What they said:
"One of just three Hawkeyes in the history of the school to rush for over 3,000 career yards, Young's best attribute is that he's got a well-rounded skill set since he's also a solid receiver and has shown good technique as a blocker in pass protection." - Ed Thompson, Scout.com
"Free-agent value. Makes yards. Good quicks to the hole and lateral cutting ability. Has quick feet and good backside vision but is short in stature and lacks the juice to run away from people, second- and third-level people. Possible late selection." - Tom Marino, Scout.com
"We're guys that are able to do everything. In that aspect, our games are comparable. But that's about it. He's elite. He's the best back in the league, to tell you the truth." - Young, on comparisons to Brian (Eagles) Westbrook
"[His] best season came as a sophomore, when he appeared to run more decisively and competitively than he has the past two years. Could warrant a chance in camp." - Nolan Nawrocki, Pro Football Weekly
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