Abram Smith NFL Draft 2022: Scouting Report for Baylor RB
HEIGHT: 5'11 5/8"
HAND: 8 1/4"
ARM: 30 1/4"
WINGSPAN: 6'0 3/8"
40-YARD DASH: DNP
— Good burst to and through the second level.
— Above-average flexibility. Can switch directions and angles with relative ease.
— Flashes impressive power to bounce off tackle attempts.
— Great pass protection awareness and technique.
— Good strength as a pass protector. Regularly stands blitzers up.
— Balance is underwhelming considering his frame. Too often goes down on first contact.
— Not as physical a runner as he could be. Braces before contact instead of running through people.
— Wiggle in space is lacking. Not one to make defenders miss in space.
— Not asked to catch many passes in college. There is a lot to prove in that area.
14 G, 257 ATT, 1,601 YDS (6.2 AVG), 12 TD, 13 REC, 75 YDS (5.8 AVG), 0 TD
— 3-star recruit in 2017.
— Started four games at linebacker in 2020.
— Took over as the starting running back for the 2021 season.
— Set Baylor's single-season rushing yards record (1,621).
— 2021 second-team All-Big 12.
Abram Smith is a thick, explosive running back whose pass protection skills will be as important to his NFL success as his rushing skills.
At 6'0" and 213 pounds, Smith sports a filled-out build that can handle a decent workload. Smith is at his best on zone concepts, allowing him to flow with the play until he feels it's time to cut and go. He shows great flexibility and burst once he decides to turn up the field, regularly slipping through tight areas to get to the second level. Though Smith lacks true homerun speed, he has enough juice to churn out chunk gains from time to time if he gets freed at the second level.
That said, Smith does not quite play to his frame. He rocks a fairly thick build, but Smith too often shies away from contact and struggles to run through tackle attempts with power. He flashes the ability to plow through a defender once in a while, but by and large, Smith's balance underwhelms a little bit considering his size. As he also lacks true home run speed and does not possess much wiggle at the second level, it's tough to find the rushing trait that can separate him from the pack in the pros.
Smith does bring clear passing down value, though. At this stage, Smith is an inexperienced pass catcher, but he did show decent comfort in a limited sample. His real impact will be as a pass protector. Smith shows excellent eyes and discipline as a pass protector, seldom blowing his assignment. He also impresses with good pad level and strength, allowing him to stand up to most of the defenders he is blocking. Smith should be able to handle NFL pass protection responsibilities sooner than later.
Smith may not dazzle as a runner, but he clears the bar. His blend of burst and flexibility will be enough to make him a competent runner. Pair that with Smith's ability to pass protect and it's not hard to imagine a rotational role for him in the league, even if his ceiling is rather limited.
GRADE: 6.3 (High-level Developmental Prospect - 5th Round)
OVERALL RANK: 194
POSITION RANK: RB17
PRO COMPARISON: Salvon Ahmed
Written by B/R NFL Scout Derrik Klassen