Devonta Freeman NFL Draft 2014: Highlights, Scouting Report for Falcons RB

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Devonta Freeman NFL Draft 2014: Highlights, Scouting Report for Falcons RB
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Devonta Freeman, RB, Florida State (HT: 5’8¼”, WT: 206 lbs)

Atlanta Falcons

Fourth Round: 103rd Pick

Combine Weigh-In
Height Weight Arm Hand
5082 206 29 3/8" 9 5/8"

nfl.com

Combine Workout
40-Yd dash 10-Yd split Vert Broad 3-Cone Shuttle
4.58 1.59 31.5" 9'10" 7.11 4.26

nfl.com

Positives

  • Elusive and slippery; makes defenders miss in the hole and in space; dodges direct tackles, reducing impact and staying on his feet
  • Decisive runner; is capable of creating his own yards and minimizes losses with a north-south style; does not waste much movement
  • Shows some burst; explodes through the hole and can turn the corner; is capable of creating early separation as a receiver
  • Displays vision and instincts, finding small creases in traffic
  • Good balance; has a very low center of gravity and is a resilient runner
  • Runs with good pad level; can make himself skinny in the hole and lowers his shoulder pads to help him gain additional yards after contact
  • Shifty with good lateral agility and light feet
  • Excels between the tackles; lack of height can actually be spun as a positive as it is difficult to find him in traffic
  • Decent receiver out of the backfield; average receiving production at Florida State, but it fell in line with his usage rate
  • Good ball security, changes the ball to his outside hand and rarely fumbles
  • Had some pass protection responsibility in college, and while his technique leaves much to be desired, he appears to be a willing blocker unafraid of contact that is capable of catching defenders
  • Durable, never missed a game because of injury in three years

 

Negatives

  • Lacks power; does not have the prototypical bulk or lower-body strength; is not a punishing runner and is unable to run through tackles; must continue to add muscle
  • Average top-end speed; is not much of a breakaway threat and tends to play to his timed speed
  • Inconsistent blocker; lacks functional strength and sometimes appears to have trouble locating blocks in space; too often leaves his arms down by his side; pass protection technique requires work
  • Lacks dynamic qualities; does not make explosive cuts, nor does he change gears to rip off huge chunks of yardage
  • Not an ideal short-yardage or goal-line back
  • Never had to fully carry the load at Florida State; exceeded 20 carries only twice during his college career; may be limited to a committee role at the next level; production had been largely average until a junior season in which he had much more talent around him
  • Small for NFL feature back; while lack of height and considerable bulk is not necessarily a knock, it reinforces the complementary back image
  • Had the luxury of playing on one of the nation’s best offenses; ran behind a big, talented line, and opponents had to be constantly concerned about play-action due to a prolific passing attack

 

Rushing Statistics
Year Team Car Yards Avg TD
2011 Florida State 120 579 4.8 8
2012 Florida State 111 660 5.9 8
2013 Florida State 173 1016 5.9 14

http://espn.go.com/college-football/player/stats/_/id/514134/devonta-freeman

Receiving Statistics
Year Team Rec Yards Avg TD
2011 Florida State 22 278 12.6 1
2012 Florida State 10 86 8.6 0
2013 Florida State 15 111 7.4 0

http://espn.go.com/college-football/player/stats/_/id/514134/devonta-freeman

 

Personal Notes

  • First team All-ACC 2013
  • Earned one of six freshman academic awards 2011

 

Ratings Chart

nces.ed.gov

 

Overall

A key member of Florida State’s national championship team, Devonta Freeman experienced a breakout season with an increased role in the offense and a Heisman trophy winner at the helm. With an impressive blend of burst, vision, and balance, he fits into either a zone or man-blocking scheme. Lacking ideal bulk or speed, however, could limit him to a complementary role at the next level. If he is able to improve his pass protection technique he could contribute in an NFL backfield as a rookie.

 

Draft Projection: Third-Fourth Round

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