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Scouting Profile: Todd Gurley, RB, Georgia

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Thought I'd try something new this draft season. I'll try to post my personal scouting profile for Projected 1st-3rd round picks that the Colts could possibly draft. This does *not* mean I want the player, rather that I think it's a player the Colts would consider drafting. Today starts with Georgia All-American RB Todd Gurley.


Games watched: 2014: vs Clemson, vs South Carolina, vs Tennesse


The Good: 


Strong, powerful runner who you can expect to finish off every run possible. Definitely the best finisher in the draft. Will excel as a short yardage back. Pure downhill runner. No running east and west. 


Great shiftlessness. With a lot of big backs, you usually don't see the ability to make a man miss to the extent that Gurley does. His elusiveness would lead you to believe that he was 5'9 190 lbs.

          ex. http://gfycat.com/CleanMelodicIncatern

          ex. http://gfycat.com/DarlingImaginaryIberianmidwifetoad


No hesitation in his running. He sees a hole and hits it with authority.


Can make himself small in the hole, able to make the most out of a bad situation. 


Absolutely amazing balance. Very few plays I've seen where an arm tackle or ankle grab sends him tumbling to the ground.


Physically big and strong enough to function as a pass blocker. Only problem he'll have with it in the NFL will be strictly mental. 


Seems competent as a pass catcher. Didn't get many opportunities from what I've seen. Uses hands, and gets head turned up field. Secures ball well. Shown ability to hold onto ball while absorbing a hit:

          ex. http://www.draftbreakdown.com/gif-embed/?clip=253722&gif=AntiqueGloriousHagfish


The Bad:


Tall, lean frame. He's a RB built like a WR. Can he absorb NFL hits with that frame? Steven Jackson was tall, but he was built like a tank. 


Average NFL speed. He's fast enough, but he's not going to be outrunning NFL safeties and DBs on a regular basis. Probably 4.48-4.55 speed. 


Vision? Almost impossible to quantify, but I haven't seen him make many difficult reads.


A lot of production based on talent gap between him and other defensive player. That gap closes in the NFL, he won't be able to consistently get 3 yards untouched before breaking the tackles of two walk-on DBs. That being said.....


...ability apart from oline? I don't know what the general consensus is on the Georgia oline, but man, those boys did work. He would get to the 2nd level untouched an impressive amount of time.


The Ugly: 


Pass blocking? Yuck. I know I said he's physically able to do it, but that South Carolina game was awful. If you're a high-school coach and want to show your player what good pass blocking doesn't look like, put on Todd Gurley's tape vs South Carolina.

          ex. http://www.draftbreakdown.com/gif-embed/?clip=253722&gif=MediumDazzlingEasternnewt

          ex. http://www.draftbreakdown.com/gif-embed/?clip=253722&gif=ImmaculateJadedHapuka

          ex. http://www.draftbreakdown.com/gif-embed/?clip=253722&gif=ThornyPlushConure


Upright running style is a concern. Especially coupled with his tall frame. A lot of times he'll run through a play almost standing up straight. He needs to get lower to gain leverage against NFL tackles. A lot of time shorter backs could get away with it, but not 6'1" Gurley. 


Huge injury concerns. Torn ACL in his final game. Might not be able to play until mid-season. 



I'm one of the many you'll find of the opinion that a RB in today's NFL should not go in the first round, the position just isn't that valuable and good backs can be found later (especially in this draft). Putting that aside, and evaluating him just as a player, Gurley would be one of the better prospects in this draft relative to position.  No other RB comes close to him in terms of physical ability and ceiling. If I was a betting man, I would say that Todd Gurley will be one of the better runners in the NFL by his 2nd season. 


That's not to say he doesn't have his problems. If you are the GM picking him, you have to hope that his ability to power through tackles translates to the NFL. You don't want another Trent Richardson on your hands.


Position Rank: 1

Projected Round: Late 1st-Early 2nd

NFL Comparison: Marshawn Lynch, Seattle

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Very nice write up man. I believe Gurley will be a beast. He should be able to improve his pass blocking too, like you said he has the strength and physical ability. Try to do one on Green Beckham some time.


Will do. I'll probably do a bunch of RBs before I get to WRs, but I'll definitely do DGB. 

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And here's what the evaluators at Scouts Inc,  that's the group headed by Todd McShay, think of Gurley...


Not sure what website had Gurley as a RB built like a WR, but that's not what these guys see.   he's 6'0" and 230.   Hard to see a lean WR out of that....




Overall Football Traits  (Note:  2014 stats not loaded into profile yet)

Production 1  2012 (14/12): 222-1,385-6.2-17   2013 (10/10): 165-989-6.0-10 Career receiving: 53-558-10.5-5


Height-Weight-Speed 1  Has prototypical NFL running back size.  Well-proportioned, with muscular build. Reportedly timed in the low 4.4-second range during 2014 off-season.


Durability 4   In 2013, missed three games (UT, Missouri, Vanderbilt) with ankle injury, and did not appear to be 100 percent when he returned.  Also missed portions of two other games with ankle and hip injuries.


Intangibles 1  Coaches praise his personal and football character.  Has developed into a leader.  No off-the-field incidents to our knowledge.  Ran a 8.12-second 60-meter hurdle for Bulldogs, which was seventh-fastest in school history.  Also ran track for Team USA in Europe during spring and summer of 2011. Pre-Business major.

1 = Exceptional  2 = Above average  3 = Average  4 = Below average  5 = Marginal
Running Back Specific Traits

Competitiveness 1  Runs hard, and churns out yards at end of runs with strength and effort. Above-average ball security. Has lost only two fumbles on 440 career offensive touches during first two seasons (2012-13).


Vision/Patience 2  Can occasionally be a bit impatient and fail to allow blocks to develop. But overall, he is decisive and shows good vision. Doesn't dance; hits hole hard and senses cutback lanes.


Agility/Acceleration 3  Builds speed as he goes, and displays a clear second gear in open field. Has very good top-end speed for size. Takes too long to gather before redirecting, and does not show ideal initial acceleration when planting and cutting.  But in short area (when he hasn't reached high gear), he is light on feet and can quickly make multiple cuts to get through smaller crease. 


Power/Balance 1  Downhill runner. Load to bring down, especially with a head of steam. Will barrel through defenders in the hole. Naturally a high runner, and takes some big shots to body when he doesn't drop pads prior to contact.  But, shows excellent natural power and balance to bounce off tackles and consistently finishes falling forward.  Perfect fit in power-based rushing attack. Compares favorably to Marshawn Lynch (Seahawks).


Passing Game 2  Underrated pass-catcher. Shows natural hand-eye coordination. Does a nice job of adjusting to ball thrown outside frame.  Good acceleration upfield after catch, and is a load to bring down in open field.  In pass pro, has good size and strength to anchor and does an adequate job of getting into position.  Would like to see more aggressiveness with initial contact.  Inconsistent sustaining blocks.


1 = Exceptional  2 = Above average  3 = Average  4 = Below average  5 = Marginal
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I'd love it if we picked up Gurley, but he would be on the Josh Chapman plan this year with the ACL injury.

I don't think he'd be anywhere near ready until December at the earliest.


Maybe with the ACL injury we can pick him up on a bargain if we did.

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Not sure what website had Gurley as a RB built like a WR, but that's not what these guys see.   he's 6'0" and 230.   Hard to see a lean WR out of 


Not really. If I showed you a picture of him and you didn't know what position he was, you would probably say WR.



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