Human beings are getting faster, and the trend continues in 2013 NFL draft prospects.
If your favorite team has a need for speed, it’ll have no trouble erasing it this April. Here are the three most explosive playmakers with the ball in their hands in the upcoming class.
3. Giovani Bernard (RB, North Carolina)
Bernard rushed for 1,228 yards on 6.7 yards a pop this season. And despite carrying the football just 184 times, he finished fourth in the nation in runs of 50 yards or longer.
The UNC back is so explosive that Charlie Campbell of WalterFootball.com had trouble deciding if Bernard’s most accurate pro comparison was Chris Johnson or Reggie Bush. That’s not a bad pair of players to be a hybrid of.
2. Denard Robinson (ATH, Michigan)
Robinson was a failure at his primary position this season, but just because he won’t be able to play quarterback at the next level doesn’t mean he can’t be an exciting running back or wide receiver.
He still rushed for 7.2 yards per carry in 2012 and recorded the third-most runs of 40 yards or longer in the country. And as ESPN’s Sports Science will tell you, Robinson boasts more than enough athleticism to continue to make a living using his legs in the NFL.
1. Tavon Austin (WR, West Virginia)
The NFL can’t allow the New England Patriots to get their hands on Austin. If they do, the wideout would give the Pats a younger, more athletic version of Wes Welker.
Austin doubled as a receiving and running threat for the Mountaineers this year. He finished second in the nation in plays from scrimmage of 40 yards or longer—nine through the air and the other five on the ground.
He’ll likely be too valuable at the next level to use as a return ace, but whoever drafts him will definitely have the luxury to do so, as Austin took a kickoff and punt to the house this season.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.