Breaking Down 5-Star RB Leonard Fournette's Highlight Tape

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst ISeptember 12, 2013

Breaking Down 5-Star RB Leonard Fournette's Highlight Tape

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    Leonard Fournette is the top running back in the country, as the 5-star recruit is perceived by many to be the best player in the nation. He is a 6'1" prospect who carries the ball on a frame that weighs nearly 230 pounds.

    He has great speed and good quickness and flashes elusiveness in the open field. He also can be a load at the point of attack due to his strength, power and ability to drag defenders downfield for extra yards. 

    Using his highlight tape constructed by the Full Ride video team, Fournette's skills warrant an in-depth breakdown.

    Player evaluations are based on review of tape at Scout.comRivals247Sports and ESPNU.

Play No. 1: 0:00-0:13

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    On the opening play of his highlight tape, watch as Fournette initially displays the quickness to get through an alley.

    He gets struck high, but his strength allows him to fight off the defender. He then exhibits the instincts and vision to see that his offensive lineman has not sustained his block and a defender is lurking to seal the alley.

    Fournette alertly and quickly darts back upfield, where his underrated elusiveness, awareness and speed rumble for big gains can be seen.

Play No. 2: 0:13-0:23

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    On this play, the average observer will view it as a good one by Fournette, but in reality this is a rare play.

    His awareness, instincts and peripheral vision come in handy.

    As he laterally shoots into his flare route, he sees the defender has read the play and is on the attack. He keeps his concentration, catches the ball with his hands and uses great lateral quickness to elude the defender.

    Fournette then reaches top speed quickly, which leads to a big gain. The average running back would have either dropped the ball or gotten tackled behind the line of scrimmage. 

Play No. 3: 0:23-0:29

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    An admirable trait shown on this play is how Fournette trusts his kick-out block and then shuffles to elude contact in a subtle but quick manner.

    Another notable element to this play is his pad level while coming through the hole. Watch how he keeps his shoulders low and square, has his eyes up to locate threatening defenders and swiftly gets to the second level.


Play No. 4: 0:29-0:40

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    In the initial phase of this play, Fournette's agility and lateral quickness are shown by him skating away from the defensive end trying to squeeze down the line.

    The next phase of the play is where his great vision is on display. Watch how he slices upfield but sees that his center's opponent has beaten him. Fournette makes the correct decision by cutting left and back to the side where he has more blockers.

    After that, his strength and ability to carry defenders after contact have to impress anyone who sees this clip.

Play No. 5: 0:40-0:51

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    Fournette benefits from great execution by his offensive line. He takes the handoff, his left tackle stands his man up the line of scrimmage, and the extra defender on the flank makes a mistake by jumping to the edges.

    Fournette's good speed, forward-lean running style and open-field stride carry him to the end zone.

Play No. 6: 0:51-1:07

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    Here is another simple but excellent play from Fournette. He makes what appears to be a pre-snap read, as he takes the handoff and quickly races to the edges of the box.

    He gets a good seal block, which allows him to cleanly attack the perimeter, outflank the defense, square his shoulders upfield and use his great speed to score another long touchdown.

    He also carries the ball properly on the right, which is the outside arm.


2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map

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    Fournette is the top player on the 2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map! After going through this breakdown of his highlight tape, it's easy to see why he has the top spot.

    Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns.