The Cleveland Browns may be in need of a backup running back with Kareem Hunt's latest run in with the law. Here are three mid to late round backs to keep an eye on in the draft.
Pundits often classify the running back positions as a dime a dozen. And its hard to argue that line of thinking is incorrect. Players such as Kareem Hunt, Le'Veon Bell, Alvin Kamara, Phillip Lindsey and James Conner were all mid or late round NFL draft picks.
The Cleveland Browns now may just be in the unfortunate position in which they have to use one of their draft picks on a running back now that Kareem Hunt's status for next season is up in the air. Here are three mid to late round running back prospects to keep an eye on.
No. 1: Anthony McFarland Jr., Maryland
Anthony McFarland Jr. surprised a lot of people when he decided to declare for the NFL draft last December. The redshirt sophomore struggled with injuries last season in route to posting 614 yards on the ground and eight touchdowns.
His redshirt freshman season was much better. Fully healthy, he ran for 1,034 yards while averaging an impressive 7.9 yards per carry. He also almost single-handedly beat Ohio State that season rushing for 298 yards and two touchdowns in a 52-51 overtime loss.
The five-foot nine-inch, 198 pound back is extremely shifty and illusive while possessing excellent breakaway speed.
Ranked No.9 on Scott Wright's draftcountdown.com running back rankings, McFarland has a chance to be day two selection in the third round but a lot of that will be determined by how he tests during the offseason.
No. 2: Michael Warren II, Cincinnati
Michael Warren is an exciting prospect coming from the University of Cincinnati. Warren rushed for 1,265 and 14 touchdowns last season as a red shirt junior. That comes after rushing for 1,329 yards and 19 scored as a red shirt sophomore.
Warren leaves the Bearcats second all time in rushing touchdowns with 34. He posses great size for a running back at 5-foot 11 inches tall and 222 pounds in weight. He is considered a true all-purpose back as he can both run with power to get the tough yards but also has been able to breakaway from defenders in the open field. Here is a good example of this from the 2018 season:
Warren is ranked No. 17 on Scott Wright's rankings. He should easily fall to-day three of the draft and could be a steal in the later rounds.
No. 3 Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Vanderbilt
Ke'Shawn Vaughn is a former Illinois transfer who had two back to back 1,000 yard rushing seasons in his two years at Vanderbilt. With 21 career rushing touchdown at Vandy, Vaughn has a knack for finding the end zone.
Vaughn leaves Vanderbilt with a very impressive 6.4 yards per carry average and is also a threat out of the backfield in the receiving game having 66 career receptions for 648 yards. He also has excellent speed while having been clocked at a 4.43 40 yard dash time.
Garret Price of Dynasty Nerds is on the Vaughn train, calling him one of the best backs in this draft class:
With very good speed, acceleration and vision, Vaughn would look to be a good target in the third to fourth round area of this draft and could make an NFL general manager look very smart in selecting him.