Grading Each 49ers Selection in the 2016 NFL Draft
Kelvin Taylor, RB, Florida
When I first heard Kelvin Taylor’s name come off the board in round 6, I had no idea that he was son of former NFL running back Fred Taylor. Fred Taylor was a great running back for the Jacksonville Jaguars, amassing 11,695 rushing yards and 66 touchdowns in 13 seasons(he played his last two in New England).
So at least Kelvin Taylor has the pedigree and bloodline that you would want in an NFL prospect, coming in.
But he has an uphill climb to make the roster. Currently, Carlos Hyde, Shawn Draughn, Mike Davis and Jared Hayne all sit atop Kelvin Taylor on the team’s depth chart. It is good to have competition, but as a round 6 selection, it will be difficult for Kelvin Taylor to see playing time in the 49er offense.
Hyde is the team’s workhorse back, and I expect him to receive the bulk of the carries. Draughn proved himself, in the middle of the 2015 season, as a capable backup who is able to run, catch, and block well. Mike Davis was a fourth round pick in 2015’s draft, so he should stick. Hayne is a different story entirely.
The former Aussie Rugby player has a knack for making things happen in space because of his rugby experience. In Chip Kelly’s offense, Hayne will be able to take advantage of open spaces on running back screens, as a third down back and even on some wide receiver screens toward the sidelines.
For Kelvin Taylor, I think it’ll be a tough roster spot to earn, but at 5’10” and 207 pounds, along with his dad’s help, his strength(17 bench reps at 225 pounds) and his speed(4.6 40 yard dash) Taylor may have a chance. Who knows? Mark Dulgerian seems to think he has a fighting chance:
"Taylor has some “grinder” to him and he’s pro-ready thanks to the tutelage of his father. He should emerge from camp as the team’s No.2 or No.3 back"
Overall Grade: C+ or (6/10)
Next: Round 6 Pick No. 38