Some of you may be thinking “who in the hell is Benny Cunningham?!” and that’s fair. He’s definitely of the Deep Dynasty Sleeper variety. There’s no doubt he goes into Rams training camp this week as a heavy underdog to Daryl Richardson, Isaiah Pead, and trendy rookie Zac Stacy. But Cunningham is plenty talented in his own right and with the right opportunity, could be a very productive NFL running back.
Don’t believe me?
Here’s why you should…a couple months ago I used my Running Back Projection Model to advise caution on Zac Stacy in relation to the rest of the wide-open Rams backfield situation. In the process, Coleman Kelly astutely pointed out that Cunningham should not be dismissed when handicapping the lead runner race. So I did some research and discovered that Benny’s athleticism and college production numbers suggest he could be a stud if he just gets a chance to play.
The main concern with Cunningham has been the torn patellar tendon he suffered midway into his senior season. The good news is, according to the dnj.com article, he’s ready to get back to action:
Cunningham, a former Goodpasture standout, was limited to only drills and non-contact work for precautionary purposes during rookie mini-camp and organized team activities in the spring and early summer due to his torn patella tendon at MTSU last season.
“I feel like I’m in great shape and finally back from the knee injury,” said Cunningham, who earned All-Sun Belt Conference honors as a senior last season despite playing less than half the season. “I just have to see the doctor (Saturday) to get cleared. Then I can show the coaches what I can do.”
Cunningham said Rams trainers are confident he will be cleared for training camp, but a physical with the team doctors will determine that.
You don’t need to go out and roster Benny just yet. But like Alfred Morris last year, if you start to hear some positive buzz out of Rams training camp, or see him taking first team reps in the third game of the preseason, do yourself a favor and grab him before someone else does.
As you do your summer draft prep, don’t forget to check out why I think Lamar Miller will live up to all of the offseason hype, why David Wilson might not, and the potential 10 TD wide receiver who’s still going undrafted.