NFL Draft 2013: Running Backs Who Will Be Instant Starters

Jeremy FuchsCorrespondent IIIJanuary 25, 2013

Giovani Bernard will start right away in the NFL.
Giovani Bernard will start right away in the NFL.Lance King/Getty Images

Every team needs a running back and there will be plenty available in the NFL Draft 2013. However, which players will be instant starters?

Let's take a look at which running backs have the tools to be starters right away.


Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina

Giovani Bernard is probably the best running back in this class. 

The redshirt sophomore rushed for 1,228 yards and 12 touchdowns. He has a great combination of speed and power and projects as a star at the next level.

Bernard will likely be the first running back selected and could be taken in the first round. Wherever he's taken, his speed and power will allow him to start immediately. 


Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama

Eddie Lacy has had a fantastic career for the Crimson Tide and will continue that in the NFL.

The 6'1", 200-pound back ran for 1,322 yards and 17 touchdowns.

He came to play when it mattered most. In the SEC Championship game against Georgia, Lacy ran for 181 yards and two touchdowns. In the BCS National Championship game against Notre Dame, Lacy ran for 140 yards and a touchdown.

He's a power runner who excels between the tackles and is tough to bring down. His running style will make him a fan favorite and an instant starter in the NFL. 


Joseph Randle, RB, Oklahoma State

Joseph Randle is an explosive running back who was incredibly productive.

In the last two seasons in Stillwater, Randle has scored a remarkable 40 touchdowns.

He's capable of breaking off big runs—he had two over 60 this year. 

The 6'1", 200-pound back has the size and strength to go between the tackles, and the speed and quickness to break it outside. He's the complete package.

Look for Randle to be a second-round pick and to start instantly. 


Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin 

Montee Ball was an absolute workhorse for the Badgers and will continue to be at the next level.

In his career, Ball rushed for 5,140 yards and 77 touchdowns.

He's a bell cow and has a great ability to run through the tackles. He's tough to bring down and fights for extra yards. 

Ball projects a starting running back who can carry the ball 20-plus times and excel in short-yardage situations. Ball may not be picked until the middle rounds, but the team that does select him is getting an instant starter.