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View Full Version : All-Time best Running Back Prospects, ever?


katnip
10-28-2009, 09:45 PM
Who you guys think was the best rb prospect's ever. I don't care if their all time great or bust. Just curious. I'd imagine most people were in love with Ki-Jana Carter.

And while because he wasn't the strongest, fastest, etc. Curtis Martin was looked at as a average prospect. And he put up HOF type numbers.

CC.SD
10-28-2009, 09:48 PM
#1 Bo Jackson, but he didn't feel like being a Buccaneer.

FloridaSkinzFan
10-28-2009, 09:48 PM
Recently Reggie Bush

yourfavestoner
10-28-2009, 09:51 PM
Earl ******* Campbell and Bo ******* Jackson.

katnip
10-28-2009, 09:52 PM
Just interested in knowing. If Willis Mcgahee never messed up his knee. Was he considered a top-5 in the draft type talent by most public? I was only starting to really like the 'Canes back during the infamous pass interference game.

yourfavestoner
10-28-2009, 09:55 PM
Just interested in knowing. If Willis Mcgahee never messed up his knee. Was he considered a top-5 in the draft type talent by most public? I was only starting to really like the 'Canes back during the infamous pass interference game.

He would have easily been a top 5 pick. Many considered him to be the best prospect in that entire draft (outside of Palmer).

And what is it with great Cane runningbacks and blowing out their knees and losing their explosiveness? Edge, Gore, Mcgahee...Can you imagine if these guys wouldn't have had to transform themselves into power runners? Frightening to think of.

CJSchneider
10-28-2009, 09:58 PM
Mike Ditka thought Ricky Williams was pretty good.

A Perfect Score
10-28-2009, 10:04 PM
Ricky Williams for sure. Peterson should of been one, but those freak accidents made people think he was more injury prone then he really was.

LonghornsLegend
10-28-2009, 10:09 PM
Bo Jackson. /thread

General Zod
10-28-2009, 11:23 PM
Bo Jackson


Can u dig it?

niel89
10-28-2009, 11:49 PM
I read somewhere that there was only 2 RBs that were graded as perfect prospects, Bo Jackson and O.J. Simpson.

TACKLE
10-28-2009, 11:51 PM
I read somewhere that there was only 2 RBs that were graded as perfect prospects, Bo Jackson and O.J. Simpson.

I would really like to see more of OJ. NFL Films rarely shows highlights of him and its almost like they pretend he doesn't exist. For a guy who is considered one of the greatest and most talneted RB's ever to play the game, I'd like to see more film/highlights.

niel89
10-29-2009, 12:02 AM
I would really like to see more of OJ. NFL Films rarely shows highlights of him and its almost like they pretend he doesn't exist. For a guy who is considered one of the greatest and most talneted RB's ever to play the game, I'd like to see more film/highlights.

Yeah nobody seems to care about his playing days anymore. I still love OJ the running back. 2,003 yard in a 14 game season with a 6.0 avg. Damn.

That stride is amazing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AoK_KGz1rHU

RaiderNation
10-29-2009, 12:22 AM
Bo Jackson, Reggie Bush, and Adrian Peterson

wordofi
10-29-2009, 12:29 AM
Reggie Bush is the best in the last 5 years anyways.

7-11
10-29-2009, 12:41 AM
In my time following the draft it's easily Reggie Bush, people thought he was going to revolutionise the position.
Obvious choice all-time is Tecmo Bo.

CashmoneyDrew
10-29-2009, 12:44 AM
Tim Biakabutuka.

No_
10-29-2009, 01:13 AM
OJ, Bo Jackson, Herschell has to be up there, Reggie Bush

wicket
10-29-2009, 02:30 AM
Bo Jackson, OJ and Ricky Williams in that order

MetSox17
10-29-2009, 03:21 AM
Man i can't believe it took this long for someone to mention Herschel Walker. What about Barry Sanders? Dude was absolutely unstoppable at Okie Lite.

tuan33
10-29-2009, 03:32 AM
Well they're talking about prospects. Barry Sanders was a little on the small side so I can see why he isn't included in the best RB prospects ever. But good mention of Herschel Walker. People forget how dominate he was in college. Just absolutely destroyed the competition; Size and speed to dominate. Even though he did fairly well in the pros, he was considered a disappointment considering how high he was rated.

Iamcanadian
10-29-2009, 05:45 AM
Bo Jackson, OJ and Ricky Williams in that order

For those who include Williams, you do realize that James was drafted before him so I don't see how he is on the list. Bo Jackson and O.J. Simpson were easily the top 2.

ironman4579
10-29-2009, 08:55 AM
Earl ******* Campbell and Bo ******* Jackson.

I don't know if Earl Campbell would be considered the best RB prospect ever, but he was a damn beast, and one of my favorite running backs ever. Watching Earl highlights is just so entertaining. The guy just destroyed people. I think there's a youtube video if him at Texas basically picking up a Rice defender and carrying him about 5 yards into the endzone.

FUNBUNCHER
10-29-2009, 09:06 AM
I just dusted off an old SPORT mag from '89 in the basement, the 1989 draft issue that was the greatest 1st round draft in NFL history(!!), producing current and future HOFers Barry Sanders, Troy Aikman, Derrick Thomas, Deion Sanders, and Steve Atwater plus a host of guys who were flat out BEASTS in college, ( Nebraska DE/OLB Broderick Thomas, Tony Mandarich, Florida safety Louis Oliver,Georgia RB Tim Worley), and guys who were all-pros and among the best at their positions like Andre Rison, Eric Metcalf, Andy Heck, and former LSU and Cardinals LB Eric Hill.

The measurables for some of these guys were off the charts and guys like Oliver, Hill, Sanders, Derrick and Broderick Thomas and Eric Hill were considered and still are seen as prototype athletes for their positions.

However, there is one RB who came out that year from Florida State who blew my mind as a kid and the reason I used to watch FSU whenever they were on TV.
RB Sammie Smith was chosen with the 9th pick in the '89 draft by the Dolphins. He was 6'2, 226#, and ran a sub 4.4. Even today I think Bowden would say he was the best RB prospect he ever coached. Too bad he liked to toot the nose candy and compounded it by being selected to play pro ball in South Florida.

FuzzyGopher
10-29-2009, 09:10 AM
Eric Dickerson? He broke some of Earl Campbell's college records and was 3rd in Heisman voting. He was also drafted #2 overall. Big, fast and powerful.

stephenson86
10-29-2009, 09:12 AM
here is the earl campbell rice video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7uaPTIkiYSM

quite impressive

Halsey
10-29-2009, 09:33 AM
There was a time when being the starting RB at Penn State seemed to automatically make a guy a top RB prospect. Curt Warner, Blair Thomas, Ki-jana Carter and Curtis Enis were all top 5 picks. Only Warner actually lived up to his billing.

ironman4579
10-29-2009, 09:34 AM
Again. Barry Sanders was considered undersized coming out, so probably not in the conversation, but christ, the guy had some amazing balance and sick cuts. Some Barry from the Okie State days..............

WWxOPSGE8mI

Sniper
10-29-2009, 09:38 AM
Tim Biakabutuka.

I love you.

JebemqUKRwA

Halsey
10-29-2009, 09:46 AM
Since Barry Sanders is a big part of this thread I'm gonna take the opportunity to show people just how awesome his Heisman season really was. I don't feel most people truely realize just how dominant he was.

In an 11 game season he rushed for 2,628 yards. A record that still stands as the most rushing yards in a season, despite the fact that teams play 12 game regular seasons now. If you count the Bowl game he rushed for 2,850 yards in 12 games. Thionk about that for a sec. If he played a 13 or 14 game schedule, as teams often do today, he would have easily gone well over 3,000 yards. Wow.

Here's a link to his game by game numbers: http://sportsratings.typepad.com/college_football/2007/12/barry-sanders-1.html

FUNBUNCHER
10-29-2009, 11:13 AM
Ironman, that first couple seconds of your clip where Barry makes 4 tacklers miss IN THE BOX(!!) about says all you need to kno.w

ironman4579
10-29-2009, 12:29 PM
Ironman, that first couple seconds of your clip where Barry makes 4 tacklers miss IN THE BOX(!!) about says all you need to kno.w

I like the ridiculously fast little jump cut he makes at about 41 seconds. It doesn't look like all that much, but he losses almost no speed when he makes it. That's just crazy.

Go_Eagles77
10-29-2009, 12:35 PM
Mike Ditka thought Ricky Williams was pretty good.
So did eagles fans. lol

GhostDeini
10-29-2009, 12:42 PM
The Colts taking Edgerrin James over Ricky Williams has to be one of the smartest picks of all time. They didn't let the accolades and hype get to them and Edge went on to lead the entire league in rushing as ROOKIE. But I gotta go here with Sanders & Peterson as best RB prospects ever. Forget all this Tim Tebeaux stuff, Sanders is the best college player ever and Peterson was the only 18 year old I've ever seen that was ready for the NFL.

Brent
10-29-2009, 12:43 PM
1) Bo Jackson


EjO_QfFYV78

he ran a 4.19 forty at the combine.

FUNBUNCHER
10-29-2009, 12:50 PM
I think that time is more myth than verified for Bo. I don't think he ever ran at the combine, that # is from Auburn, I believe.

If someone has other info, please confirm or deny.

Brent
10-29-2009, 12:51 PM
If someone has other info, please confirm or deny.
http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/2008-02-22-40-yard-dash_N.htm

"That said, Bo Jackson has the best verifiable time at a combine with his 4.12-second clocking at the Louisiana Superdome in 1986." BOOM

FUNBUNCHER
10-29-2009, 12:54 PM
Thanks, Brent. ;)

Brent
10-29-2009, 12:57 PM
Thanks, Brent. ;)
Personally, I cant even comprehend a man that big moving that fast. That's like a goddamn freight train.

FUNBUNCHER
10-29-2009, 01:00 PM
Yeah, it's hard to digest Bo was that fast at 230#. Definition of FREAK.

I like a lot of the contenders in this thread for best RB prospect ever, but it's hard to seriously put anyone ahead of Mr. Jackson.

MetSox17
10-29-2009, 01:01 PM
That had to have been hand timed, cause there's no way in hell he would have run a 4.1 electronically.

nepg
10-29-2009, 01:17 PM
#1 Bo Jackson
#2 Herschel Walker
#3 Adrian Peterson
#4 Barry Sanders

Halsey
10-29-2009, 01:45 PM
Little known truth about Herschel: He was a good pass catcher and had over 500 catches for almost 5,000 yards in the NFL.

9A6-bfEs814

Shiver
10-29-2009, 01:55 PM
Bo Jackson and Barry Sanders baby.

tuan33
10-29-2009, 04:27 PM
That had to have been hand timed, cause there's no way in hell he would have run a 4.1 electronically.

I thought the record was chris johnson with his 4.24 at the combine and that 4.1 was just a myth. Like Galloway's supposed 40 time of 3.9.

vikes_28
10-29-2009, 10:04 PM
I remember Ki-Jana Carter. The guy battled injuries his whole life.

boknows34
10-30-2009, 02:01 AM
Ron Wolf said he gave Bo Jackson the highest grade he ever gave for a RB.

Halsey
10-30-2009, 03:07 AM
I just remembered an elite RB prospect who I haven't seen mentioned yet:

pIcHlUWfpyY

He wasn't in Jackson or Walker's league as a prospect, but he was easily one of the top 10 RB prospects of the last 30 years.

fenikz
10-30-2009, 04:55 AM
JUICE and Bo Jackson

Gay Ork Wang
10-30-2009, 05:08 AM
I thought the record was chris johnson with his 4.24 at the combine and that 4.1 was just a myth. Like Galloway's supposed 40 time of 3.9.
its wasnt timed electronically. Someone like Deion Sanders was definitely faster than Chris

FUNBUNCHER
10-30-2009, 06:28 PM
Halsey, was that last couple seconds of Faulk scoring against USC??

I can't think of two modern backs who physically seemed more similar, yet couldn't be more worlds apart in the NFL. Everything - speed, height, weight, elusiveness - yet Reggie just can't seem to put it all together.
One thing you pick up from that youtube clip about Faulk is he didn't dance and juke all the time like Bush. Yes, he was very elusive, but it was more a one cut to daylight and get up field running style, none of the wasted movement that allows defensive players to close on Bush so easily.

And best prospect is all about a player's combo of height/weight/speed/elusiveness, not necessarily who is the most overall talented RB. Faulk had everything you'd want in a RB except superior height and weight.

Besides Faulk very soon is going to have a bust enshrined in Canton.
Bo Jackson and Herschel Walker will not.

iowatreat54
10-30-2009, 06:49 PM
Yes, well Canton has nothing to do with who was the best prospect coming out of college. They don't put you in the Hall of Fame for being a good prospect. So, the fact that Faulk will be in it and not Jackson does not mean he was a better prospect coming out.

FUNBUNCHER
10-30-2009, 07:24 PM
Yes, well Canton has nothing to do with who was the best prospect coming out of college. They don't put you in the Hall of Fame for being a good prospect. So, the fact that Faulk will be in it and not Jackson does not mean he was a better prospect coming out.

Huh? My point was at the end of the day, what you do on the field matters more than measurables. There are several great college RBs prospects who for whatever reasons never amount to great pro football players. Having great potential is just that - potential.

Whether or not it ever ever blossoms into outstanding play at the next level has more to do with a player's intangibles, (toughness, intellect, emotion) than his height/weight/speed.

It's unfair because Jackson's career was cut short by injury, but the fact remains he never approached the player Faulk was in the pros.

Halsey
10-30-2009, 07:26 PM
Well, it does look like USC, although keep in mind USC hasn't always been loaded with elite defensive talent year after year like they are right now. USC in the 80's and 90's kinda went through a couple of down decades by their standards.

I agree that Faulk looks similar to Bush in college in that video. It's funny that he had to go to SDSU to play RB. He was a great college back from the moment he hit the field. Talk about college scouts for major programs missing out...

and whether or not someone goes to the HoF has nothing to do with how good a prospect they were. Emmitt Smith was not even close to an elite prospect.

Here's some other elite RB prospects we haven't mentioned:

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dj3fm8lxBf4 (couldn't find a good vid of Allen in college)

FUNBUNCHER
10-30-2009, 07:41 PM
As a lifelong Skins fan, if Marcus Allen was dying of thirst on the side of the road, I would not offer him a drop of water!!!

That's still one of the sickest runs I've ever seen and at the time nearly brought me to tears. That's when you knew that SB was OVER. I think everyone on the Skins D had a shot at Allen on that play, and it still didn't matter. Where was Darrell Green??

40 times and game speed are not the same.

And George Rogers is someone most people forget about, but in his day he was the prototype; great vision, over 6'2, and speed. I believe he had a little bit of a coke problem too in the NFL that derailed his career.

Dorsett is still on my personal top 5 RBs I've ever seen play.

iowatreat54
10-30-2009, 07:45 PM
Huh? My point was at the end of the day, what you do on the field matters more than measurables. There are several great college RBs prospects who for whatever reasons never amount to great pro football players. Having great potential is just that - potential.

Whether or not it ever ever blossoms into outstanding play at the next level has more to do with a player's intangibles, (toughness, intellect, emotion) than his height/weight/speed.

It's unfair because Jackson's career was cut short by injury, but the fact remains he never approached the player Faulk was in the pros.

Yes, and the point of the thread isn't who had the best career out of prospects, it's who the best prospect coming in was.

So the fact that Faulk succeeded/performed better in the NFL is completely irrelevant in this thread. That was my point.

bigbluedefense
10-30-2009, 07:54 PM
Ernie Davis was the greatest RB prospect ever.

Read up on him. It was a sad story. RIP Ernie Davis.

Never played a game, but is still in the Brown's HOF.

bigbluedefense
10-30-2009, 08:02 PM
Just thinking about Ernie Davis and Jim Brown, maaan, what the heck happened to the Browns?

They had such a rich history, such a proud franchise. And for the last 30 or so years, theyve been anything but.

The last time they were good, Marty Schottenheimer was the coach and Bernie Kosar was the quarterback.

That was a looong time ago. I hope the Browns bounce back. That franchise has too much history and pride to be in such a bad rut.

MetSox17
10-30-2009, 08:42 PM
I remember when Kelly Holcomb took them to the playoffs.

Vox Populi
10-30-2009, 08:49 PM
Just thinking about Ernie Davis and Jim Brown, maaan, what the heck happened to the Browns?

They had such a rich history, such a proud franchise. And for the last 30 or so years, theyve been anything but.

The last time they were good, Marty Schottenheimer was the coach and Bernie Kosar was the quarterback.

That was a looong time ago. I hope the Browns bounce back. That franchise has too much history and pride to be in such a bad rut.

Isn't there a movie about Ernie Davis now?

the decider13
10-30-2009, 09:19 PM
He wasn't the best, but Billy Sims definately needs a mention in the top 10 RB prospects. Dude was a BEAST.

Shane P. Hallam
10-30-2009, 09:26 PM
Easily Bo Jackson. But honestly, Ki-Jana Carter was right up there for me. The guy was mind boggling in the way he played. If it wasn't for injuries/the team he ended up on, he could have been amazing.

BamaFalcon59
10-30-2009, 09:30 PM
Erik Dickerson not getting enough notice here.

BRAVEHEART
10-30-2009, 09:33 PM
Reggie Bush

roscoesdad27
10-30-2009, 10:39 PM
Man i can't believe it took this long for someone to mention Herschel Walker. What about Barry Sanders? Dude was absolutely unstoppable at Okie Lite.

walker yes, barry no....in terms of being a prospect barry didnt have the measuarbles to be in the uber elite...if he came out the same year these guys did he would surely have been drafted behind them.

bo, walker, bush, peterson, mcfadden

Vox Populi
10-30-2009, 10:56 PM
walker yes, barry no....in terms of being a prospect barry didnt have the measuarbles to be in the uber elite...if he came out the same year these guys did he would surely have been drafted behind them.

bo, walker, bush, peterson, mcfadden

If Barry doesn't have the measurables how does Bush... and McFadden, while he is one of the fastest guys with decent size thats timed in to go along with his college production isn't close to Bo, Walker, Bush or Juice. Bush was probably the most hyped prospect ever, and I don't blame anyone, Bush was adding a new clip to his highlight reel every time he touched the ball in his Junior year at SC. I'd put Bo at number 1, Walker at 2 and Bush at 3 in terms of prospects and the media attention that they got based on what I've experienced, read and learned (Only really experienced Bush as a prospect, not old enough for the others), and then probably O.J. after that.

Since I started following the draft though...

Bush > Peterson > McFadden

CashmoneyDrew
10-30-2009, 11:39 PM
On a side note, can anyone find me video of Billy Sims drop kick on a defensive player?

BamaFalcon59
10-30-2009, 11:39 PM
RunDMC, in his junior and senior seasons combined, put up 3,500 rushing yards/ 30 rushing touchdowns/ 300 receiving yards/ 2 receiving touchdowns/ 200 passing yards/ 7 passing touchdowns/ 1 return touchdown.

He did this in the SEC while splitting carries with a fellow future first round pick in Felix Jones (2,200 yards rushing, 18 rushing touchdowns, 300 yards receiving, 3 receiving touchdowns, 8 yards a carry, 3 kick return touchdowns in his final two seasons combined).

Bo, in comparison, had 1,786 yards rushing (17 touchdowns) in his senior season along with 73 yards receiving. 830 yards as a frosh, 1,200 as a sophmore, 500 as a junior. He averaged more yards per game in his top season than did McFadden, and averaged more YPC. But DMC was superior in receiving, passing, and kick returning. The rushing differences were small, especially considering how many carries DMC would have gotten without Felix Jones there. Not to mention the SEC now adays is rather beasty, and DMC/ Felix Jones carries that Arkansas team when everyone knew what was coming (not sure about AU in 1985).

Production was not an issue for McFadden.

CashmoneyDrew
10-30-2009, 11:42 PM
Darren McFadden left after his junior year BamaFalcon. I know it was probably just a slip-up but just reminding you in case.

the decider13
10-30-2009, 11:44 PM
walker yes, barry no....in terms of being a prospect barry didnt have the measuarbles to be in the uber elite...if he came out the same year these guys did he would surely have been drafted behind them.

bo, walker, bush, peterson, mcfadden

This is a crazy time gap leaving out guys like Carter, Sanders, Thermal, Sims etc. I really can't see DMC being a better prospect than any of those 4.

Sims and Carter were both number one overall picks, keep that in mind.