Ravens' J.K. Dobbins Talks 'Shocking' 2020 NFL Draft Slide: 'It Added Fuel'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJuly 31, 2020

Ohio State running back J.K. Dobbins runs for a 33-yard touchdown against Michigan in the second half of an NCAA college football game in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Paul Sancya/Associated Press

Baltimore Ravens running back J.K. Dobbins said Friday it was "kind of shocking" to watch himself slide to the second round of the 2020 NFL draft in April.

"I don't need any fuel, but it added fuel," Dobbins told reporters. "It was kind of shocking, but I fell to the right team."

The 21-year-old Texas native produced a tremendous career at Ohio State. He rushed for 4,459 yards, added 645 receiving yards and scored 43 total touchdowns in 42 appearances across three years with the Buckeyes.

Although there was no consensus among the running back rankings heading into the draft, the 2019 First-Team All-American was considered a candidate to become the first player at the position off the board along with Clyde Edwards-Helaire (LSU), D'Andre Swift (Georgia) and Jonathan Taylor (Wisconsin).

Edwards-Helaire ultimately earned the honor, going 32nd overall to the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.

Swift (No. 35 to the Detroit Lions) and Taylor (No. 41 to the Indianapolis Colts) followed, but the biggest surprise came when the Los Angeles Rams selected Cam Akers out of Florida State at No. 52.

Dobbins followed three picks later, becoming the fifth running back off the board.

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh praised the OSU standout during an appearance on ESPN (via Dustin Schutte of Saturday Tradition) during the draft.

"Well I didn't love the school he comes from, but I liked everything else about him" Harbaugh said. "He was right there, probably our top-rated running back. Just such an explosive, downhill runner. He has lateral cut ability. I think we added a lot of speed, and he's a big part of that."

Harbaugh's brother, Jim, is the head coach at Michigan, Ohio State's chief rival.

Dobbins is likely to split time with Mark Ingram II during his rookie season. Justice Hill and Gus Edwards will also receive some touches and the offense is headlined by quarterback Lamar Jackson, the most dynamic rusher among QBs, so the rookie's statistical upside may be limited initially.

The Ravens are scheduled to open the regular season Sept. 13 when they host the AFC North rival Cleveland Browns.