The 2017 RB Sweet 16: (3) Christian McCaffrey vs (14) Kareem Hunt

The RotoViz Running Back Prospect Sweet 16 Tournament matches the top incoming prospects in a head-to-head March Madness style format. Various RotoViz writers break down each match-up with the winner moving on to the next round.

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(16) Stanley Williams vs (17) Christopher Carson

(2) Dalvin Cook vs (15) Donnel Pumphrey

(3) Christian McCaffrey vs (14) Kareem Hunt

McCaffrey has been a workhorse for one of the top football programs in the country. He disappointed slightly with his weight (202 pounds) at the Combine but still had a productive weekend, running a 4.48 in the 40 and posting an astounding three cone time of 6.57. After finishing as the runner-up in 2015 Heisman voting, McCaffrey could potentially go in the first round of April’s draft.

Hunt came in just outside the top 10 RBs in version five of the RotoViz Scouting Index and has been a favorite of #DraftTwitter. He compiled almost 1,900 yards and 11 TDs this past season at Toledo.

McCaffrey v Hunt

Matthew Freedman – Christian McCaffrey: I like Hunt as a big guy who was productive in college and should be easy to acquire, but McCaffrey is young, athletic, productive, and versatile. There’s no contest here. Having said that, I’m also not sure I want to pay the price to acquire McCaffrey in rookie drafts. He probably won’t be cheap.

Anthony Amico – Christian McCaffrey: I’m a McCaffrey fanboy, and I don’t care who knows it. He was a workhorse at Stanford and caught at least 37 passes in each of his final two seasons. While a 4.48 forty at 202 pounds isn’t ideal, it’s sufficient given his production and outrageous agility.

Matt Wispe – Christian McCaffrey: I like Hunt as a contributer in the NFL, but after McCaffery starred at the combine, he looks like a potential superstar. Paired with his record-setting college production, McCaffrey deserves to be drafted within the first five rookie picks.

Blair Andrews – Christian McCaffrey: Hunt is an intriguing prospect who was productive as both a runner and a pass catcher. But, for as good as Hunt was, McCaffrey was better, both in raw production and market share. Hunt also had a poor showing at the Combine, turning in a sub-100 Speed Score.

Heith Krueger – Christian McCaffrey: Hunt looked intriguing initially with a fairly impressive track record of production at Toledo, but his combine measurables were abysmal. McCaffrey is coming out of Stanford with even better production numbers against tougher competition. He’s the easy choice here.

Jordan Hoover – Christian McCaffrey: Hunt was underwhelming at the Combine, which is a shame, given his impressive production profile – 0.44 career msRUYDS. I still like Hunt at his likely depressed price point in upcoming rookie drafts, but for the purposes of this tournament, I’m going with McCaffrey.

Scott Smith – Christian McCaffrey: As someone who is a Hunt fan, I was very disappointed in the 4.62 forty Hunt put up at the combine. That possibly could have been saved with some solid agility score numbers, but unfortunately Hunt did not complete those drills. None of that would even matter against McCaffrey. The total sum of Hunt’s production in college fails in comparison to what McCaffrey has put on tape and on paper. McCaffrey may be the one player that film and stat gurus alike can get behind. Production, workout metrics, and film that pops, McCaffrey may be hard to beat in this tournament.

Shawn Siegele – Christian McCaffrey: McCaffrey is already a borderline top-five fantasy back.1

Final Results

While the staff still liked Hunt’s production even after a poor Combine, he was simply no match for the young and dynamic McCaffrey. It’s early, but McCaffrey looks like one of the favorites in this tournament given his agility score and workhorse history. He moves on to face the winner of Samaje Perine and Brian Hill.

More on these prospects: 

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  1. Amico’s note: Face-melting emoji  (back)
By Anthony Amico | @amicsta | Archive

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