Dynasty

C.J. Prosise and Tyler Ervin Lead the Sleepers in Post-Combine RB Prospect Lab Rankings

The 2016 class sports Derrick Henry and Ezekiel Elliott, two rare examples of highly publicized prospects who are actually as good as the hype. Beyond the two mega-stars, the class is fairly weak but with a handful of intriguing sleepers who could allow you to win your rookie draft in Round 2 or 3.

Using the RotoViz RB Prospect Lab can help you calibrate your expectations for different prospects. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you should draft the prospects in exactly this order, as draft slot and opportunity will also play a key role in early career fantasy value.

To help put these scores in context, I’ve included a similar player from the 2015 class. These players are comps in terms of score only; they are not stylistic comps. I’ve also provided a range of players from the last decade to give a feel for past scoring.

Ages are from Jon Moore’s excellent Rookie Age Project database.

The Rankings

No. 1 Derrick Henry

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Derrick Henry 21.5 247 4.54 7.2 26.3 147.9 1.9 0.7 93

Henry earns the top score in this year’s class and the computer agrees with Matthew Freedman that he should go 1.01.

2015 Comp: Todd Gurley (88)

More comparable players:

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
LADAINIAN TOMLINSON 21.44 221 4.46 6.84 33.55 196.18 2 0.91 100
STEVEN JACKSON 20.44 231 4.55 7.03 26.92 118.85 1.46 3.38 100
DARREN MCFADDEN 20.36 211 4.33 6.86 25 140.77 1.23 1.62 97
MATT FORTE 21.97 217 4.44 6.84 30.08 177.25 1.92 2.67 97
KEVIN SMITH 21.05 217 4.53 6.74 32.14 183.36 2.07 1.71 93
LEVEON BELL 20.88 230 4.56 6.75 29.38 137.92 0.92 2.46 93
ADRIAN PETERSON 21.8 217 4.4 7.09 26.86 144.57 1.71 1.43 86
RAY RICE 20.97 199 4.42 6.65 29.23 154.77 1.85 1.92 86
LATAVIUS MURRAY 21.54 223 4.38 6.81 18 100.55 1.36 2.45 84
MICHAEL TURNER 21.79 237 4.49 7.54 25.83 137.33 1.17 1.58 84

No. 2 Ezekiel Elliott

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Ezekiel Elliott 20.5 225 4.46 7* 22.2 140 1.8 2.1 92

This is as tight as it gets. Logically, we can probably assume that the faster back with more a more extensive receiving background should be the preferred back in PPR formats.

2015 Comp: Todd Gurley (88)

No. 3 C.J. Prosise

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
C.J. Prosise 21.6 220 4.48 7.1 15.7 102.9 1.2 2.6 60

This year’s top sleeper candidate, Prosise shares size, athleticism, and receiving ability with 2015 surprise David Johnson. He doesn’t have the same workhorse background having only transitioned from receiver to RB in his final year.

2015 Comp: David Johnson (63)

More comps:

NAME AGE YEAR WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
MONTARIO HARDESTY 22.93 2010 225 4.49 6.87 21.69 103.46 1 1.92 62
JAMIE HARPER 21.32 2011 233 4.53 7.16 15.15 58.46 0.54 2.69 62
JEROME HARRISON 22.75 2006 201 4.47 6.79 28 172.73 1.45 2.18 62
ANTONIO PITTMAN 21.07 2007 207 4.4 6.84 18.62 94.85 1.08 1.08 62
ANDRE BROWN 22.05 2009 224 4.37 7.35 13.46 59 0.54 2.23 61
RYAN MOATS 21.97 2005 210 4.46 7.22 24 147.83 1.5 1.25 61
CYRUS GRAY 22.02 2012 206 4.4 7.17 18 95 1.09 2.82 58
RONNIE BROWN 23.08 2005 233 4.43 7.12 12.75 76.08 0.67 2.83 58
CEDRIC BENSON 22.03 2005 222 4.62 7.5 27.17 152.83 1.58 1.83 58
TIM CORNETT 21.69 2014 209 4.48 7.01 20.31 98.77 1.15 2.31 57
ANTHONY THOMAS 23.05 2001 229 4.58 7.48 26.09 141 1.45 1.18 55
CARNELL WILLIAMS 22.72 2005 217 4.43 6.95 18.38 89.62 0.92 1.62 54

No. 4 (tie) Kenneth Dixon

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Kenneth Dixon 21.9 215 4.58 6.97 18 97.5 2.4 3 57

Dixon missed the 6.8 three-cone time you’d like to see from a three-down back and has borderline athleticism for a future bell cow. The computer likes his receiving ability, and Jon Moore thinks fantasy owners should as well.

2015 Comp: Tevin Coleman (59)

No. 4 (tie) Tyler Ervin

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Tyler Ervin 22.2 192 4.41 7.1* 22.6 123.1 1.2 3.5 57

Ervin is a slightly deeper sleeper than Prosise and probably needs a good landing spot to have rookie value. He’s our first back who comes in below 200 pounds, but he’s also our fastest RB at 4.41. He was extremely productive for San Jose State last season, including 3.5 receptions a game. Eric Braun loves Ervin and explains why he’s moving up in the RSI rankings.

2015 Comp: Karlos Williams (58)

No. 6 Devontae Booker

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Devontae Booker 23.6 219 4.6* 7.1* 26.8 126.1 1.1 3.7 55

The times for Booker are approximations, and he could certainly move up with a 4.45 forty and 6.8 three-cone. The older Utah prospect ticks all of the production boxes, especially in the pass game, and looks like a future committee back at worst. Freedman explains why his age shouldn’t bother you.

2015 Comp: Javorius Allen (55)

No. 7 Jordan Howard

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Jordan Howard 21.2 230 4.65* 7.3* 21.8 135 1.1 1.2 52

As Howard opted not to run at the combine, I’ve assumed pedestrian athletic ability. Moore loves him for his early production, but he caught only 24 passes in three years.

2015 Comp: Zach Zenner (54)

No. 8 (tie) Alex Collins

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Alex Collins 21.3 217 4.59 7.3* 20.8 121.3 1.5 1 47

Collins was one of the combine’s biggest losers with a 4.59 forty and 28.5-inch vertical. His underwhelming athleticism confirms whispers that he is the inferior of the two Arkansas RB prospects. I’m still enamored with his 20 TDs against the seventh toughest schedule.

2015 Comp: Jeremy Langford (48)

More comps:

NAME AGE YEAR WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
DARRIN REAVES 20.64 2014 209 4.54 7.07 16.83 77.83 1 2.42 50
MIKE JAMES 21.63 2013 223 4.5 6.93 12.25 51.75 0.5 2.5 49
CHARLES SIMS 23.21 2014 214 4.48 7.16 17.33 91.25 0.92 3.75 49
JERICK MCKINNON 21.5 2014 209 4.41 6.83 16 103 1.2 0 49
KERWYNN WILLIAMS 21.53 2013 195 4.44 7.15 16.77 116.31 1.15 3.46 48
AHMAD BRADSHAW 20.7 2007 198 4.55 6.7 20.75 126.92 1.58 1.42 48
CHARCANDRICK WEST 22.5 2014 205 4.4 7.08 13.18 82.36 1.27 2.91 47
DARREN SPROLES 21.44 2005 187 4.47 6.96 22.18 119.82 1 2.91 46
KENDALL HUNTER 22.3 2011 199 4.46 6.74 20.85 119.08 1.23 1.54 46
MEWELDE MOORE 21.29 2004 209 4.65 7.07 20.56 101.67 0.56 4.33 45
JOSEPH ADDAI 22.68 2006 214 4.4 7.1 14.38 70.08 0.69 1.54 44
JACQUIZZ RODGERS 20.84 2011 196 4.59 7.31 21.33 98.67 1.17 3.67 44

No. 8 (tie) Paul Perkins

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Paul Perkins 21.1 208 4.54 7.2* 18.2 103.3 1.2 2.3 47

Perkins flies under the radar because he doesn’t impress in any one area. He’s probably a long term NFL backup, but keep in mind that his production is solid across the board.

No. 10 Daniel Lasco

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Daniel Lasco 23.1 209 4.46 7.22 17.5 92.9 1.2 2.75 44

Lasco is one of Kevin Cole’s sleepers due to his 4.46 forty. He also impresses with 2.8 receptions per game but will enter the NFL at a relatively advanced age.

2015 Comp: Cameron Artis-Payne (44)

No. 11 Jonathan Williams

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Jonathan Williams 21.9 220 4.6* 7.1* 16.2 91.5 1.1 0.8 32

Take this with a grain of salt as I’ve estimated his athletic results and used Williams’ 2014 numbers from before the injury. He may be better than Alex Collins.

2015 Comp: Mike Davis (35)

No. 12 Kenyan Drake

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Kenyan Drake 21.9 210 4.45 7.04 5.9 31.4 0.2 2.2 24

Due to the circumstances at Alabama, Drake is this year’s trendy limited-production back. With a solid size/speed combo and plus receiving ability, he could end up justifying his draft position.

2015 Comp: Josh Robinson (17)

Other comps:

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
CORRELL BUCKHALTER 22.15 226 4.53 7.08 9.64 68.18 0.64 0.45 27
ALFRED MORRIS 22.99 219 4.63 7.01 19.58 98.83 0.75 1.25 27
THOMAS CLAYTON 22.44 218 4.63 7.28 16.75 80.5 0.75 2 26
SPENCER WARE 21.12 228 4.62 7.07 8.55 33.36 0.09 1.64 26
JUSTIN FORSETT 22.23 194 4.62 6.96 23.38 118.69 1.15 1.69 24
LACHE SEASTRUNK 21.44 201 4.51 6.81 14.36 107 1 0 24
RYAN WILLIAMS 20.75 212 4.59 6.96 11 47.7 0.9 0.6 23
CEDRIC HOUSTON 22.53 225 4.61 7.28 13.92 77.31 0.62 1.23 23
BARON BATCH 23.05 207 4.5 7.03 13.62 62.77 0.38 2 21
LEONARD HENRY 23.9 206 4.57 7.11 16.73 130.18 1.45 2.27 19
CHRIS RAINEY 23.85 180 4.36 6.5 14.25 71.75 0.17 2.58 16
LEON WASHINGTON 23.36 201 4.42 6.96 8.82 39.09 0.27 2.27 15

Small School Special

NAME AGE WT FORTY CONE ATTS YPG TDS RECS SCORE
Marshaun Coprich 21.4 207 4.47 7.26 24.7 151.3 1.8 1.4 65

The Lab isn’t meant to handle small school players, but Coprich’s score is impressive nonetheless. Braun explains what he has in common with Ahmad Bradshaw.

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By Shawn Siegele | @ff_contrarian | Archive

Comments   Add comment

  1. He does slightly, although I may have been too generous in estimating a 7.0 considering he opted out. (My thought was that the fast, strong pass-catching backs may opt out of the 3-cone since it can probably only hurt them as a good time is already assumed.)

    If he'd participated and run a 6.8, he would have leap-frogged Henry with a 94. If you assume a poor time of 7.3, his score falls to 89.

    Basically, a prospect as big, young, fast, and productive as Elliott is pretty immune to minor dings.

  2. How says:

    Isn't it a bit worrying that Henry had fewer receptions than any of his comps (generally A LOT fewer receptions)? And before you tell me that we don't know that he's a bad receiver, since he just didn't get the opportunities in college, here are the past 5 lead backs to play for Alabama:

    Yes, Henry outperformed the lot of them on the ground, and yes Henry's 40, size and explosiveness line up remarkably well with Brandon Jacobs's numbers (6'4", 267 lbs, 4.56 40, 37" vert, 118 broad, 7.54 3-cone, 4.49 shuttle, as compared to Henry's 6'3", 247 lbs, 4.54 40, 37" vert, 130 broad, 7.20 3-cone, 4.38 shuttle). Okay, Henry had much better broad jump and agility scores, but he was also 20 pounds lighter. Okay, and yes, Trent Richardson had the best receiving production in college, but how were we supposed to know one of the great RB prospects would suck so much?

    My point is this: I think we have a good enough sense of how Alabama runs its offense to be able to judge its running backs' receiving output. Also, Henry had lackluster receiving production after the departure of uber-prospect Amari Cooper.

  3. I think that's all very much the case. In this instance Henry's size probably works against him - in terms of the all-important receiving ability - and that's something not captured by the RB Prospect Lab which sees bigger as always better. I'll be making that argument in an update to my 5 Most Overvalued Prospects list.

    But I do think Henry makes a tremendous standard league pick or early MFL10 selection.

  4. As I mentioned in my Henry piece, I think that we are making a mistake if we assume that because Henry has never caught a ton of passes, that he never will, or that (even more egregious) he is not capable. Henry amassed almost 400 college carries this year. Asking him to also shoulder the receiving load is probably a little much, especially when you consider that Alabama does a great job with developing guys who can contribute on third downs. In fact, if you consider what Alabama RBs have been able to do in the NFL over the last few draft classes, it may even be likely that Henry possesses some receiving chops.

    Whether or not he actually gets that opportunity is an entirely different discussion, but I would honestly be surprised if Henry got chances as a receiver and failed.

  5. Aggs says:

    Is Prosise's 3-cone a concern? I'm starting to really like him as a prospect.

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