Predicting Risers & Fallers at the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine
By Jerod Brown
Derrick Henry-Running Back-University of Alabama
Remember when I said the Scouting Combine can be called the ‘Underwear Olympics?” That’s because nobody is wearing pads. Everybody participating is sporting tight athletic gear that emphasizes their muscular physique. Football, however, is played with pads on.
In the case of Alabama running back Derrick Henry, it might be a disadvantage to participate without padding. Henry will stand out in the running back group. He’s 6’3” and over 230 pounds.
In the College Football Playoff National Championship game, Henry stood next to the New Orleans Saints’ running back Mark Ingram and, well, there was a slight size difference.
Henry is currently one of the top running backs in this draft class. That opinion likely won’t change much regardless of what happens at the Scouting Combine. However, Henry possesses a skill set that isn’t exactly suited for position specific drills highlighting agility and change-of-pace movements.
Put pads on Henry and he is a load to take down. He’ll excel in the NFL as an in-between the tackles runner that gets downhill fast and falls forward easily for extra yards.
When competing in jerseys with agile running backs, Henry will look a step slower in all of his movements. That’s not to say that Henry isn’t a good player, or that he won’t find a home in the NFL. He will. And he could still easily go in the first two rounds of the 2016 NFL Draft.
But, in an environment where some prospects will stand out against one another, Henry will be on the short end of the stick. Give him an alley to run through, and he’s one of the top prospects in this draft. If you expect him to make cuts behind the line of scrimmage, you’re asking him to do something out of his range.
Draftbreakdown.com has plenty of videos on Henry and his game against Wisconsin was a good indication of his strengths and weaknesses.
Henry will stand out at the Scouting Combine when he gets measured but he’ll stick out in positional drills. For that reason, he’ll see his stock fall just a bit leading up to the draft.
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