DEEP FRIED DRAFT
454 attempts, 2572 yards, 25 touchdowns
48 receptions, 563 yards, 5 touchdowns
Today we are going to take a look at one of the best tailback prospects available in the 2018 draft. Saquon Barkley arrived in Happy Valley as a four-star recruit from Whitehall HS in Pennsylvania. He started six games a freshman and broke the Nittany Lion freshman rushing record. As a sophomore, Barkley became one of the best all-around backs in the nation. He had 300 offensive touches and accounted for 1398 yards and 22 touchdowns. It all culminated in the Rose Bowl when Barkley had 30 touches for 249 yards and three touchdowns.
2016: Michigan, Ohio State, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Southern Cal (Bowl)
DFD COOKBOOK RECIPE
I think Barkley is a better East-West runner than he is a North-South runner. This is to not say he is bad at running North-South because he is not. It is really just nitpicking more than anything. The one area where I think he can improve is pass protection. He runs hot and cold in this area.
Saquon Barkley has plenty of speed. This past spring Penn State recorded him at 4.33 in the 40. (Probably more along the lines of 4.40, but still fast) He is also weight room strong with a school record in the power clean at 405 pounds and squatting 525 pounds five times. One of the most important aspects of running back play for me personally is ability out of the backfield. Barkley has really good hands and is an accomplished route runner. He is a decisive runner, planting his foot in the ground and exploding up the field. In the five games I watched, Barkley had zero fumbles. He also has kickoff return ability. The best thing about Barkley to me is his ability in the open field. He had one of the best runs I have ever seen in the Rose Bowl (see the 4:30 mark in this video) against Southern Cal.
Saquon Barkley is one of the best running back prospects I have scouted. There are very few weaknesses to his game. If he stays healthy in 2017 he should easily go in the Top 10 picks next April.