Dec 31, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Boise State Broncos running back Jay Ajayi (27) runs the ball for a touchdown in the first quarter against the Arizona Wildcats in the 2014 Fiesta Bowl at Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The NFL draft is long over and 2015 may long be remembered as the return of the running back position. Both Todd Gurley out of Georgia and Melvin Gordon from Wisconsin were drafted in the top-15 of the first-round.
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In the 2013 and 2014 NFL drafts, not a single running back was selected in the first-round. Some people thought that the running back position was losing its luster, but this draft has seemingly brought it back. This class of rookie running backs has a limitless amount of potential between them, but that talent goes much deeper than those two backs.
This running back draft class is incredibly deep and it produced a few big-name backs after the two previously mentioned names, as well. Ameer Abdullah, T.J. Yeldon, Tevin Coleman, and Duke Johnson are all big-time players that are nationally known. But there was some serious talent at the running back position in this draft class that weren’t regarded as ‘big names,’ too. Specifically, there are five underrated running backs that could make a difference out on the field as early as next fall.
The names of these running backs are the ones that casual football fans may not recognize, despite the fact that all five could put together impressive collegiate careers. These five back’s professional careers could be just as special to watch, too. I’m not saying that all five of these players will be starters or major factors as rookies in 2015, but all five definitely have the talent to make their mark on their new teams as early as this year.
In recent years, young running backs have made some big impacts on numerous NFL teams and I’m predicting that this trend will continue in 2015. In fact, I’d say this is the best running back class in recent memory so this could be a great year for young backs league-wide.
Did your team draft one of the five most underrated rookie running backs in the 2015 draft class?
Next: 5 Underrated Rookie Running Backs to Watch in 2015