The 2023 NFL Draft is over and teams are getting comfortable with their new draft picks. The next class of players is getting prepared now for another year of college football. Each position will be analyzed in the coming days. Here is the 2024 NFL Draft prospect watchlist: Running Backs.
Braelon Allen, Wisconsin Badgers
Allen has been the next up in a line of great Wisconsin running backs. He rushed for 1,268 yards as a freshman to go with 12 touchdowns. In 2022, Allen totaled 1,242 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns. His play has led the Badgers to 16 wins over the last two seasons.
If he declares for the 2024 NFL Draft, Allen will be one of the bigger running backs in the class. He is 6-foot-2 and 238 pounds, which gives him great power and contact balance. Allen also has solid speed for his size. While he doesn’t have great elusiveness or receiving ability, Allen can still be a productive running back in the NFL.
Blake Corum, Michigan Wolverines
The Wolverines have had a good rushing attack the last few seasons and Corum has blossomed into a star. He has improved every season he has spent in Ann Arbor, going from 74 to 952 to 1,463 rushing yards through his three seasons on the field. Corum had 18 rushing touchdowns and aided Michigan in making their second-straight College Football Playoff.
Corum will have to show he is recovered from a torn ACL late in the 2022 season during the 2023 season to maintain his draft stock. Corum is quick, with good vision. He has the ability to run between the tackles, but can also bounce runs outside to maximize yardage. Corum hasn’t proven to be a great receiver and could have better breakaway speed.
Donovan Edwards, Michigan Wolverines
While Corum was a Heisman candidate last season, Edwards filled in well after he returned from injury. After rushing for 174 yards in his first season, Edwards rushed for 991 in 2022. He really helped the team out after Corum was lost for the season due to injury.
Edwards has solid size, good breakaway speed and receiving ability. He showed how big of a home run threat he was against Ohio State, with several big runs. Edwards isn’t the most creative runner and also hasn’t carried the full workload yet, but the latter may not be as big of an issue in today’s NFL.
TreVeyon Henderson, Ohio State Buckeyes
Henderson had a good freshman season for Ohio State, but then dealt with injuries in 2022. Over his two seasons, Henderson has 1,819 rushing yards, 340 receiving yards and 26 total touchdowns. He has helped Ohio State win a Rose Bowl and get to the College Football Playoff in his two seasons.
Henderson is quick, but is also a patient runner. He has a solid build to run between the tackles, but is also able to bounce runs outside. Henderson also has proven to be a solid receiver. He can be better in pass protection and add to his route tree to really become a three-down back for the next level.
Raheim Sanders, Arkansas Razorbacks
Sanders had a good freshman season then really turned things on in his sophomore campaign for the Razorbacks. As a freshman, he rushed for 574 yards and five touchdowns. He improved to 1,443 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns last season, as he led the Razorbacks to eight wins.
He has a well-built frame for the NFL level. Sanders has good contact balance and runs right through arm tackles. He has decent vision and quickness. Sanders isn’t the most elusive running back, as he prefers to use his power, and he also lacks breakaway speed.
Will Shipley, Clemson Tigers
Shipley has been a bright spot on the offensive side of the ball for the Tigers the last few years. He rushed for 729 yards as a freshman and totaled 11 touchdowns. In 2022, Shipley had 1,182 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns. He has helped Clemson have two double-digit win seasons.
At Clemson, Shipley has proven to have good size and speed for the position. He can catch and has shown to be a good short yarage back with his solid contact balance. To become an even better three-down running back, Shipley can work on his pass pro, as he can sometimes fail to see where pressure is coming from.
Other Prospects to Watch
Trey Benson, Florida State Seminoles- After starting his career at Oregon, Benson burst onto the scene for the Seminoles last season with 990 rushing yards. He is set to have a larger role out of the backfield this season.
Marshawn Lloyd, USC Trojans- Lloyd is going from South Carolina to USC this season. He averaged over 5.0 yards per carry last season, but that is projected to improve with the Trojans.
Jase McClellan, Alabama Crimson Tide- He has waited his turn and now McClellan will get his chance to shine at Alabama. He has made big plays for the Crimson Tide, but now the opportunity is there for him to carry the load.
Miyan Williams, Ohio State Buckeyes- When Henderson struggled with injury issues in 2022, Williams filled in well. He showed he is a tough runner, who has solid contact balance.
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