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RB Leonard Fournette, Bucs


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People are overthinking this.  The narrative that Fournette is just a straight line runner is one that has picked up steam for no other reason than because it's picked up steam.  It's like Kim Kardashian being famous because she's famous.

Yeah, the runs where he lowers his head and flattens a DB onto his back get the highlight reels, but that only works because the guys are off balanced because they're worried about him running around them too.

His spin move is wicked.  He doesn't do the big jump cuts that smaller backs do but his cuts are subtle and SUDDEN.  Take for example this run against Ole Miss.  Notice the subtle cut and burst to split the 3 DBs and turn a 10 yard run into a 70 yard run.

Same thing here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MKKnCz8OSc&t=2m56s

That's not to say that he can't do the big jump cut to juke someone out of their shoes, just that it's often not really necessary for him.

To me, the thing I look for most in an NFL RB has always been a guy with a strong lower body that runs through arm tackles without slowing down.  That's where long runs come from in the NFL.  I don't care how many tackles you break, if it slows you down you're done because there are just 5 more guys jumping on you.  It's the guys that run through an arm tackle like it's not even there.  And that is Fournette, and his cuts put him in that position to turn a regular tackle into an arm tackle.

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11 hours ago, steelers1080 said:

Conspiracy theory.  Fournette loves running behind a fullback. 49ers signed Kyle J, a very good fullback to lots of money this offseason.  Coincidence?!?! Probably.

He's more of an H-back. I dont know enough about him to say he can't block, but I do know he wasnt used that way in Baltimore. He was a pass catcher.

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3 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Huh? Hill is not good.

Hill is decent, but the knock on him is his power/explosion/slow feet, all of which Fournette is rather good at.  So if Hill is his floor and Fournette being a better version of Hill then ifsofacto I like the comp as it doesn't bring gaudy expectations with it.  

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12 hours ago, Biabreakable said:

I have some bases of my own or reasons why I don't like Fournette. A lot of it is just being tired of listening to people gush about how great he is.

To me he is a rich mans Jeremy Hill to keep the comparison close to home. He is a lot better than Hill in my opinion, just not really the style of player I am looking for, which is more about ascetics than anything else. I still think Fournette has a good shot to be the best RB from this draft class and likely to have a top 12 season in fantasy at least once within the next three years. 

How would you rank the top 6ish RBs?

Asking for a friend.

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7 hours ago, Zyphros said:

 ifsofacto 

Ipso Facto

Fournette isn't perfect as a RB and people seem to be holding that against him to a very high degree.  I like him as a player and as the holder of the #1 pick in my dynasty league I'll definitely be taking him.

Some people downgrade him for not being able to catch.  Have you actually watched game tape?  Just because the QB doesn't throw him the ball often doesn't mean he can't catch.  He's run routes out of the backfield well and caught the ball over 20 yards down field with ease.  A player not being asked to do something isn't the same as not being able to do it. Is that the crux of his game, obviously not, but he can definitely do it when called upon and should be able to rack up more than 40 catches per year.

Pass blocking, he leaves a lot to be desired, but he is miles ahead of Cook. Dalvin can pretty much only cut block, and during the 2016 season defenders learned that and were able to dodge his blocks regularly. Fournette has the size and willingness to take on defenders.

Defenders in the box.  Last year Mixon saw 8+ defenders in the box on 6% of his carries.  Cook saw 8+ defenders in the box on around 33% of his plays.  Fournette saw 8+ defenders in the box on 67%.  This stat is a bit old, but in 2012 the highest percentage of 8+ defenders in the box against a running back was 42%.  Fournette saw 1/4 more of his run plays face off against 8+ defenders.  And his offensive line was crap. If you watch the game tape they're regularly pushed deep into the backfield just as he's getting the handoff.

Some say it's a negative that he likes running behind a FB.  AP preferred running behind a FB and no one gave him crap about it. It enables the RB to focus on following the FB through the hole, then analyzing the linebacker and d-line approach angles in order to find gaps in the defense.  Instead of reading the entire D, they only have to read the reactions to the FBs block.  This isn't a negative, having a preference is normal for any RB. Leveon Bell likes to work from the Deep I so he has more time to approach the line and pick his lane.

Lots of people look at Fournette as a 1-trick pony.  While I see that as misguided and discounting his pass catching ability, what's wrong with being a destructive downhill runner?  By the time the 4th quarter rolls around, defenses will be beaten and battered. They'll be tired of getting smashed, and he'll be able to grind out more yards.  He has the power to run straight through arm tackles, and when he lowers his shoulder he has the ability to brush off defenders with ease.  This bruising running style could take its toll over the years, but expecting more than 6 years of dominance from a RB is a bit lofty.  You can't plan for injuries, Mixon or McCaffrey could tear an achilles on day 1 and be done. Who knows. 

Injury prone.  Has he been injured? Yes. Does he have a collision-based running style? Yes.  He sustained an ankle injury in 2015 and again in 2016, but numerous medical sources have stated that it's not an inherent problem with his ankle, it was just injured twice. The injury during the 2016 training camp was a high ankle sprain.  This is often a lingering injury that you need to wait for it to heal 100% or when you come back, you'll reinjure it and need to start all over.  He's LSU's star player, and a competitor, so he came back early and reinjured it.  The final time he reinjured it, he shut things down for the season.

Passion.  Some people think he's not passionate about the game since he didn't play in the Bowl game.  They don't seem to question McCaffrey's passion... Either way, playing hurt increases the chances of being hurt worse or getting hurt in another way.  Also, his future was on the line. He had nothing left to prove and he had everything to lose, just look at Jaylon, Lattimore, any prospect who had the chance to be a star taken away by injury.  It wasn't an easy decision, but it was the smart decision to sit.

Here's a breakdown of his play if interested: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27ortq29_UU&index=11&list=PLXsZe81HkbdzBvZNyTnXZ83yrJJ6XYc0-

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4 hours ago, Spike said:

How would you rank the top 6ish RBs?

Asking for a friend.

I have about finished my rankings now but still some players left that I haven't watched yet.

Top 9 RB would be

Tier one

Dalvin Cook
Christian McCaffrey
Leonard Fournette

Tier two

Joe Mixon
Alvin Kamara

Samaje Perine
D'Onta Foreman

Kareem Hunt

Marlon Mack

After this would be tier three guys who for me would be borderline rosterable players for fantasy.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Biabreakable said:

I have about finished my rankings now but still some players left that I haven't watched yet.

Top 9 RB would be

Tier one

Dalvin Cook
Christian McCaffrey
Leonard Fournette

Tier two

Joe Mixon
Alvin Kamara

Samaje Perine
D'Onta Foreman

Kareem Hunt

Marlon Mack

After this would be tier three guys who for me would be borderline rosterable players for fantasy.

 

 

Interesting.  Really like how you have "tiers-within-tiers" breakdowns.  Really like it.

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16 hours ago, Zyphros said:

If this comp was more popular I'd bet there would be more Fournette fans.  If that's who I'm comparing him to in my mind more often, I'm on board. 

I only make the comparison because he is from the same team that seems to recruit RB players who are of a similar style and skill set for their system. Fournette being the most talented one of them so far.

I think Fournette has a similar style and skill set as Hill but that he is much better than Hill at everything Hill does well, Faster and more powerful than Hill is.

I like Fournette more than Eddie Lacy who I still ranked pretty high even though I didn't personally like his game that much. I definitely prefer RB who can make defenders look silly with cuts and elusiveness, but that isn't the only style of RB who is successful for fantasy.

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10 minutes ago, Spike said:

Interesting.  Really like how you have "tiers-within-tiers" breakdowns.  Really like it.

I am just trying to keep things simple. 

That is the part I really am not done with yet though, is which tier 2 players can become tier one players post draft, and which ones do not. I am having a tough time with that part this year.

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10 minutes ago, Biabreakable said:

I am just trying to keep things simple. 

That is the part I really am not done with yet though, is which tier 2 players can become tier one players post draft, and which ones do not. I am having a tough time with that part this year.

For me Mixon is the main guy with Tier 1 upside depending on landing spot.  I also think that Perine could be a tier 1 guy.  This is 100% based on landing spot, but I've seen him mocked to the Steelers over and over and over. If he goes there, he's a 3-down back who will backup Bell, who frequently gets injured.  Perine isn't too much of a catching threat, but he's a solid pass blocker which is very important on 3rd down.  

What do you think about Pumphrey?  I know he probably won't turn into much at the next level since he's so small, but I really want him to do well.

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6 minutes ago, steelers1080 said:

For me Mixon is the main guy with Tier 1 upside depending on landing spot.  I also think that Perine could be a tier 1 guy.  This is 100% based on landing spot, but I've seen him mocked to the Steelers over and over and over. If he goes there, he's a 3-down back who will backup Bell, who frequently gets injured.  Perine isn't too much of a catching threat, but he's a solid pass blocker which is very important on 3rd down.  

What do you think about Pumphrey?  I know he probably won't turn into much at the next level since he's so small, but I really want him to do well.

While I consider all the players in a tier to be about equal, the guys who would move up are the ones at the top of the tier two list for the most part.

Where I get confused about this, or where I got stuck is that I have Mike Williams ranked as a tier two WR prospect. But everything I am hearing tells me he will be a 1st round pick, which should cause him to move to tier one, but I am not really comfortable with that. I already know he going to be drafted higher than I think he should. So it is somewhat baked into having him as a tier two guy already.

I have Mike Williams above Perine, but I tend to agree that if Perine is drafted higher than I expect (3rd to 4th round) I could see him being a tier one guy as well. I don't think that is likely to happen, but it is possible.

The cut off point is around there I think for the tier two guys.

Pumphrey is a player I haven't watched yet. I have heard he is similar to Darrin Sproles? Which is interesting. I note that Mike Clay had him ranked pretty high, I just haven't gotten around to watching him.

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@steelers1080

I will preference(?) my post by saying I have Fournette as my #1 in this years rookie drafts. 

1) Pass Catching: I've had to adjust my perception of what "pass catching back" means. What it really means is can he line up in the slot/out wide and be efficient. And also, can he made 1 to 2 guys miss in open field and have the speed to pick up a big chuck of yards after. For LF, at the minimum we haven't seen catch passes from multiple positions. I also think it's fair to question his sudden change of direction needed for hard breaking routes. Especially, against an NFL Safety or sub package LB. 

2) Pass Pro: Dalvin Cook's performance doesn't directly impact LFs unless we are making draft comparisons but we aren't really since this is the only time it's referenced. We are just talking about LF. Fournette's Pass Pro is can be viewed either way. You can say he has the tools to be good (size and strength) and that he will learn better awareness and technique in the Pros. Or that he was so dominant as a college athlete that he should've shown better on film. 

3) Defenders in the box. I've made the same argument as you but the flip side is that when he breaks through he has a lot of space in front of him. This shows up on film too. A bunch of those huge runs from him happen this way. It isn't necessarily a knock on him but I do think we have to be honest that Fournette did benefit from the over commitment from teams too.

3) Fullback: Who cares? I don't understand why this is being talked about at all. Where did this come from? 

4) One trick pony: This comes into play if you don't believe in his vision and patience, which are somewhat valid criticisms. If this is the case then you're hoping for Ajayi or Howard production rather than you are AP. The floor for LF in this situation is filled with busts but most notable is Trent Richardson (as a Pro not a draftee/college player).

5) Injury Prone: I don't know. How healthy is any RB? More contact equals more damage to the body is the theory here. His shoulders and head seem to be fine so I, personally wouldn't worry but since he looks for contact to much it could be. 

6) Lack of passion: I agree with you 100% on this one. This is just predraft gossip. Is anyone worried that this guy is going to make "business decisions" on the field? No glaring off field issues, no major reports of work ethic or locker room problems. And, like you said with McCaffery, one of the most "high character" guys in the draft skipped his bowl game, so no problem there. 

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52 minutes ago, Biabreakable said:

I have about finished my rankings now but still some players left that I haven't watched yet.

Top 9 RB would be

Tier one

Dalvin Cook
Christian McCaffrey
Leonard Fournette

Tier two

Joe Mixon
Alvin Kamara

Samaje Perine
D'Onta Foreman

Kareem Hunt

Marlon Mack

After this would be tier three guys who for me would be borderline rosterable players for fantasy.

 

 

Where my guy Christopher Carson? :D

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3 minutes ago, Borden said:

Where my guy Christopher Carson? :D

Yeah I will check him out later.. much later. :P

I think I did read your write up on him in your thread, I just cannot recall what you had to say about him at all. It wasn't something that made me say, hey I better go watch this guy. If it was I must have missed it.

My watch list is pretty short this year. I am sure I am missing a bunch of guys.

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1 minute ago, Biabreakable said:

Yeah I will check him out later.. much later. :P

I think I did read your write up on him in your thread, I just cannot recall what you had to say about him at all. It wasn't something that made me say, hey I better go watch this guy. If it was I must have missed it.

My watch list is pretty short this year. I am sure I am missing a bunch of guys.

http://draftbreakdown.com/video/chris-carson-vs-tcu-2016/

Go watch him. 37" Vert, 130" broad, 4.58 sneaks him into acceptable range. His Pro Day 3 cone doesn't make sense (7.50) so don't look at that. :unsure:

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Initial impressions of Carson from the above linked game.

He should stick with RB. Not good pocket awareness or accuracy throwing the ball.

He does an alright job reeling in a swing pass. Wasn't able to get much after the catch, but he runs hard. He fails on contested catch downfield and not able to adjust to a pass placed a bit too far ahead of him, that is a catch that would be difficult, but I think a lot of players would execute.

He has some decent change of direction in trash and he breaks some tackles by running with good pad level and power. He has a couple runs where he breaks multiple tackles. which is fun to watch. There is poor tackling going on as well though.

He has a lot of energy and kind of runs out of control at times, but this helps him break tackles as well. I can just see him not being careful with the ball on one of those runs, before he crosses the line of scrimmage, which kind of worried me. I was watching Marlon Mack recently, who is completely fluid with changing which arm he is carrying the ball and this allows him to stiff arm two different defenders, while gaining additional yardage and protecting the football. That was a pretty great example of situational awareness and being able to do multiple things at once. 

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1 hour ago, Biabreakable said:

Because of Cook I was looking at hight draft picks with poor 3 cone times. Cedric Benson was the highest drafted guy I found with a 7.5 which is kind of proof that teams do not care about it.

Except for the fact it was over 10 years ago and CBong was a huge bust for the Bears. But that had more to do with his motivation to smoke weed and be an idiot (contract holdout, attitude, etc.) than his agility scores.

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3 hours ago, Buckna said:

Except for the fact it was over 10 years ago and CBong was a huge bust for the Bears. But that had more to do with his motivation to smoke weed and be an idiot (contract holdout, attitude, etc.) than his agility scores.

Ok.

He was a 5th overall pick Who also had a 7.5 second 3 cone time, At least the Bears didn't care about that in their decision to draft him that high was my only point.

The Bears have a pretty good track record selecting RB as well. Benson might be their worst blunder, and as you say he has other issues holding him back and Thomas Jones was pretty good as well.

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On 4/14/2017 at 4:46 PM, Biabreakable said:

Ok.

He was a 5th overall pick Who also had a 7.5 second 3 cone time, At least the Bears didn't care about that in their decision to draft him that high was my only point.

The Bears have a pretty good track record selecting RB as well. Benson might be their worst blunder, and as you say he has other issues holding him back and Thomas Jones was pretty good as well.

Thomas Jones was drafted by Arizona.

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3 hours ago, Xue said:

Thomas Jones was drafted by Arizona.

Yes and he had injuries and so left there as a free agent. Had a stop with the Bucs and then signed with the Bears in 2004 one season prior to them selecting Cedric Benson in 2005. Thomas Jones played better than Benson and never gave the starting job up to him.

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Quote

The San Francisco 49ers hosted LSU RB Leonard Fournette for a pre-Draft visit on Wednesday.

As the Sacramento Bee noted in its report, "there has been chatter for two months" that the 49ers would take Fournette No. 2 overall. We'd be a little surprised by that, as new head coach Kyle Shanahan has preferred multi-dimensional backs with receiving chops in the past (to say nothing of the fact that San Francisco has bigger needs on its decimated roster). We don't yet know what type of decision-maker new 49ers general manager John Lynch is, however, and Lynch may view Fournette as a franchise-changing talent. We'll find out next week.
 
 
Source: Sacramento Bee 
Apr 19 - 6:54 PM

 

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I've posted this in another thread but figured it is worth mentioning here. This is complete speculation, based on nothing I've heard, but hear me out:

I think Cleveland takes Garrett at #1. The Browns also have several other high picks, giving them maximum flexibility to move either up or down in the draft. While I know QBs are overdrafted and the imperative all teams face in today's in NFL to have a good one in order to be competitive, I would not be surprised if the Browns draft Fournette early (moving up from #12) and take a QB later. NONE of the QBs available are franchise changing. Sure, there are things to like about Trubisky, Kizer, Mahomes, etc..., but none of these guys are going to turn around a franchise. 

If I'm Cleveland, knowing this, the quickest way to become competitive is to build a team that can control the ball, minimizing a weak defense and erratic QB play. Look at what Dallas did last year (and no- I don't think Fournette is as good as Zeke, but it is close). Cleveland has signed some nice linemen and perhaps, are an elite back away from having a strong running game. This keeps the defense off the field and offers a young QB the chance to develop gradually.

Let's face it- if the Browns take Garrett and then Trubisky, they will still be no better than a 5-6 win team next year.

However, if they take Garrett, Fournette, and then perhaps a QB like Webb in round #2- I think the pathway to competitive play is closer.

It is worthy of note that little to no pre-draft information is linking Cleveland to an RB....that gets my attention, as silence can be deafening during the draft season.

I realize I could be totally off the mark here, but I would not be surprised if LF is in Cleveland next year. 

I actually think is the move that makes the most sense. 

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Bob McGinne spoke with one NFL scout who believes LSU RB Leonard Fournette is "head and shoulders" superior to other prospects at his position.

"He’s a freaking beast," another evaluator said. However, a few of McGinn's sources were not as optimistic. "The more I watched him, he can’t create at the line of scrimmage," said another scout. "The last guy that had that same issue was Darren McFadden." Fournette will be at his best with a coaching staff that understands he will have success with a running game built around him. That sounds obvious, but NFL coaches don't always handle it that way. Fournette how power and straight-line speed.
 
 
Apr 20 - 11:24 AM

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1 hour ago, Ack88 said:

I've posted this in another thread but figured it is worth mentioning here. This is complete speculation, based on nothing I've heard, but hear me out:

I think Cleveland takes Garrett at #1. The Browns also have several other high picks, giving them maximum flexibility to move either up or down in the draft. While I know QBs are overdrafted and the imperative all teams face in today's in NFL to have a good one in order to be competitive, I would not be surprised if the Browns draft Fournette early (moving up from #12) and take a QB later. NONE of the QBs available are franchise changing. Sure, there are things to like about Trubisky, Kizer, Mahomes, etc..., but none of these guys are going to turn around a franchise. 

If I'm Cleveland, knowing this, the quickest way to become competitive is to build a team that can control the ball, minimizing a weak defense and erratic QB play. Look at what Dallas did last year (and no- I don't think Fournette is as good as Zeke, but it is close). Cleveland has signed some nice linemen and perhaps, are an elite back away from having a strong running game. This keeps the defense off the field and offers a young QB the chance to develop gradually.

Let's face it- if the Browns take Garrett and then Trubisky, they will still be no better than a 5-6 win team next year.

However, if they take Garrett, Fournette, and then perhaps a QB like Webb in round #2- I think the pathway to competitive play is closer.

It is worthy of note that little to no pre-draft information is linking Cleveland to an RB....that gets my attention, as silence can be deafening during the draft season.

I realize I could be totally off the mark here, but I would not be surprised if LF is in Cleveland next year. 

I actually think is the move that makes the most sense. 

Not that it's impossible but would this team view the pick as TrentR take 2? I know the FO is different but isn't it the same owner? 

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@Ack88 Good on you for taking a different angle on this. I am however going to disagree. Mostly because of the Browns seemly put heavy value on analytics. 

1) I believe that moving up in the early first is more costly than their team/analytics department likes. I could see them moving down before up.

2) Maybe this is more my opinion than the Browns' but the Cap cost of paying Fournette as a top 5 pick immediately vaults him into the top 10 of all RB contracts, roughly. 

I am not talking about whether or not he's worth it. Just that it's a very expensive move, in two different areas. And the Browns seem to be trying to go in the opposite direction. 

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23 minutes ago, Borden said:

@Ack88 Good on you for taking a different angle on this. I am however going to disagree. Mostly because of the Browns seemly put heavy value on analytics. 

1) I believe that moving up in the early first is more costly than their team/analytics department likes. I could see them moving down before up.

2) Maybe this is more my opinion than the Browns' but the Cap cost of paying Fournette as a top 5 pick immediately vaults him into the top 10 of all RB contracts, roughly. 

I am not talking about whether or not he's worth it. Just that it's a very expensive move, in two different areas. And the Browns seem to be trying to go in the opposite direction. 

Those are all really good points and certainly run counter to the narrative I posted earlier.

If, however, the front office has decided that Fournette's grade is worth it, then perhaps the analytics get pushed aside. The Browns have a ton of picks.

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1 hour ago, Ack88 said:

Those are all really good points and certainly run counter to the narrative I posted earlier.

If, however, the front office has decided that Fournette's grade is worth it, then perhaps the analytics get pushed aside. The Browns have a ton of picks.

What seems like a more likely scenario would be trading down and taking Cook, or taking Mixon in the 2nd.

Fournette will probably go top 8, and the only team I could see trading up for him is the Ravens. It's a bit far-fetched, but I think they love his talent and want Jamall Lewis 2017.

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4 hours ago, Ack88 said:

I've posted this in another thread but figured it is worth mentioning here. This is complete speculation, based on nothing I've heard, but hear me out:

I think Cleveland takes Garrett at #1. The Browns also have several other high picks, giving them maximum flexibility to move either up or down in the draft. While I know QBs are overdrafted and the imperative all teams face in today's in NFL to have a good one in order to be competitive, I would not be surprised if the Browns draft Fournette early (moving up from #12) and take a QB later. NONE of the QBs available are franchise changing. Sure, there are things to like about Trubisky, Kizer, Mahomes, etc..., but none of these guys are going to turn around a franchise. 

If I'm Cleveland, knowing this, the quickest way to become competitive is to build a team that can control the ball, minimizing a weak defense and erratic QB play. Look at what Dallas did last year (and no- I don't think Fournette is as good as Zeke, but it is close). Cleveland has signed some nice linemen and perhaps, are an elite back away from having a strong running game. This keeps the defense off the field and offers a young QB the chance to develop gradually.

Let's face it- if the Browns take Garrett and then Trubisky, they will still be no better than a 5-6 win team next year.

However, if they take Garrett, Fournette, and then perhaps a QB like Webb in round #2- I think the pathway to competitive play is closer.

It is worthy of note that little to no pre-draft information is linking Cleveland to an RB....that gets my attention, as silence can be deafening during the draft season.

I realize I could be totally off the mark here, but I would not be surprised if LF is in Cleveland next year. 

I actually think is the move that makes the most sense. 

I think this is interesting.

As a Vikings fan who just went through a decade of an offensive team being built around future hall of fame RB Adrian Peterson but no good QB aside from 2009, I want to say that having a good RB but no good QB creates a QB purgatory type situation, where your team wins too many games to be able to get a good QB in the draft, but not enough games to win a championship, because you need an above average QB to get to the Super Bowl for the most part. 2000 Ravens perhaps the last example of a team doing it without an above average QB unless I am forgetting one. Bears with Rex Grossman would be another example, they just didn't win the SB.

The Browns already have Isiah Crowell and Duke Johnson who HC Hue Jackson seems to like. This will be the first time in a long time that the Browns will have the same head coach two years in a row.

This years draft is deep at RB, so I definitely think Cleveland may draft one as BPA. I just wouldn't expect it to be Fournette or to be this high a selection, because of the depth at the RB position and the quality of RB players on their roster.

As far as prioritizing positions, it is kind of putting the cart before the horse to invest highly in RB but not QB.

Edited by Biabreakable
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I fall into the camp that Fournette is pretty overrated. Its interesting to me, how high of a pick he is talked about being, after how far RB's have fallen in recent years. As far as caliber of player, not necessarily style, I think Fournette and Derrick Henry are very similar, and while I thought he should have been a late 1st rounder last year, he fell further. I think Fournette should also be a late 1st, but will likely go higher. 

I have Fournette as the 3rd best RB in this draft behind McCaffery and Mixon, though I don't think any of them are anywhere near the prospect Elliott(or  even Gurley) was. I kinda wonder if because he went to Dallas, that people forget how elite he was as a prospect, I think he'd have been great anywhere. Elliott was the best RB prospect of the last decade in my opinion. So the idea of a team trying to follow Dallas' footsteps is a bad idea, because they aren't getting Zeke. 

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15 minutes ago, travdogg said:

Elliott was the best RB prospect of the last decade in my opinion.

This was not the prevailing opinion last year.  The most common I heard was "poor man's Gurley"

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5 minutes ago, tangfoot said:

This was not the prevailing opinion last year.  The most common I heard was "poor man's Gurley"

I tend to stay in my own bubble scouting wise, but that surprises me. I thought he was a superior prospect to Gurley, due to versatility as an excellent pass blocker, and better receiver than Gurley, and Gurley was an elite prospect.

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1 hour ago, travdogg said:

I tend to stay in my own bubble scouting wise, but that surprises me. I thought he was a superior prospect to Gurley, due to versatility as an excellent pass blocker, and better receiver than Gurley, and Gurley was an elite prospect.

Not only that, but he didn't have the injury concerns.  Gurley didn't let teams check his knee at the combine and, IIRC, that raised some flags.

I think Zeke was an elite prospect--on par with Gurley, at least.  Zeke wasn't as appreciated in the dynasty community--myself included--but he was outside of it.  

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1 hour ago, travdogg said:

I fall into the camp that Fournette is pretty overrated. Its interesting to me, how high of a pick he is talked about being, after how far RB's have fallen in recent years. As far as caliber of player, not necessarily style, I think Fournette and Derrick Henry are very similar, and while I thought he should have been a late 1st rounder last year, he fell further. I think Fournette should also be a late 1st, but will likely go higher. 

I have Fournette as the 3rd best RB in this draft behind McCaffery and Mixon, though I don't think any of them are anywhere near the prospect Elliott(or  even Gurley) was. I kinda wonder if because he went to Dallas, that people forget how elite he was as a prospect, I think he'd have been great anywhere. Elliott was the best RB prospect of the last decade in my opinion. So the idea of a team trying to follow Dallas' footsteps is a bad idea, because they aren't getting Zeke. 

I don't like the Henry comparison, personally.  On paper it's fine, but Henry never played at his (surprising) timed speed.  Even his detractors concede that Fournette is as explosive as it gets, while that was a legitimate question mark for Henry.  

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On 4/14/2017 at 6:46 AM, steelers1080 said:

Defenders in the box.  Last year Mixon saw 8+ defenders in the box on 6% of his carries.  Cook saw 8+ defenders in the box on around 33% of his plays.  Fournette saw 8+ defenders in the box on 67%.  This stat is a bit old, but in 2012 the highest percentage of 8+ defenders in the box against a running back was 42%.  Fournette saw 1/4 more of his run plays face off against 8+ defenders.  And his offensive line was crap. If you watch the game tape they're regularly pushed deep into the backfield just as he's getting the handoff.

Yeah, I always chuckle to myself when I hear people make a big deal out of the Bama games. "Cons: Struggles when gang tackled while receiving handoff."

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38 minutes ago, Concept Coop said:

I don't like the Henry comparison, personally.  On paper it's fine, but Henry never played at his (surprising) timed speed.  Even his detractors concede that Fournette is as explosive as it gets, while that was a legitimate question mark for Henry.  

I agree, and I do think Fournette is a slightly greater talent than Henry, I was mostly trying to say I would put them in the same, very good, but not elite tier.  Neither of them are elite prospects like Elliott or even Gurley were.

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16 hours ago, travdogg said:

I agree, and I do think Fournette is a slightly greater talent than Henry, I was mostly trying to say I would put them in the same, very good, but not elite tier.  Neither of them are elite prospects like Elliott or even Gurley were.

Are you talking purely PPR leagues? Because then McCaffrey and Mixon would rate out higher. They could see 100 catches per year eventually, whereas Fournette would probably max out around 40-50 catches like AP (just giving an example of a run-first guy, not saying Fournette is the next AP).

The comparisons from the NFL's combine profiles:

Derrick Henry - Brandon Jacobs

Leonard Fournette - Bo Jackson

I'm not saying those will be right or wrong, but that's the league each is in. 

The draft process is too long, when it gets this far into it analysts will nitpick over things that don't really matter. I heard 4 different analysts bash Fournette in different ways, then say he should go top 4 and that he would change the face of whatever franchise takes him. Every player has flaws or worries, but if you look at his game tape he's an elite prospect.  Everyone thought Zeke was the best of his class last year, but a lot of people back then thought Cook and Fournette and possibly Chubb would be better. Zeke landed in the best possible place for a RB and put up crazy numbers. He could and probably will be better this year too, but if that line starts to fall apart due to contracts or injuries, he might fall back to earth.  Also, Cook, Mixon, and Zeke have had off the field issues, Fournette hasn't had any up to this point.

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31 minutes ago, steelers1080 said:

Are you talking purely PPR leagues? Because then McCaffrey and Mixon would rate out higher. They could see 100 catches per year eventually, whereas Fournette would probably max out around 40-50 catches like AP (just giving an example of a run-first guy, not saying Fournette is the next AP).

The comparisons from the NFL's combine profiles:

Derrick Henry - Brandon Jacobs

Leonard Fournette - Bo Jackson

I'm not saying those will be right or wrong, but that's the league each is in. 

The draft process is too long, when it gets this far into it analysts will nitpick over things that don't really matter. I heard 4 different analysts bash Fournette in different ways, then say he should go top 4 and that he would change the face of whatever franchise takes him. Every player has flaws or worries, but if you look at his game tape he's an elite prospect.  Everyone thought Zeke was the best of his class last year, but a lot of people back then thought Cook and Fournette and possibly Chubb would be better. Zeke landed in the best possible place for a RB and put up crazy numbers. He could and probably will be better this year too, but if that line starts to fall apart due to contracts or injuries, he might fall back to earth.  Also, Cook, Mixon, and Zeke have had off the field issues, Fournette hasn't had any up to this point.

I wasn't talking fantasy at all, I meant strictly on NFL talent and value. i think both McCaffery and Mixon will have more value to their NFL teams than Fournette. 

Both of those comparisons are awful. I don't know how anyone can see Bo Jackson from Fournette. Fournette has nowhere near Bo's speed, agility and possibly not even power. Bo was a true freak of nature, and no RB in the last 20 years had as much natural talent as he did. The difference from Bo to Fournette is bigger than the difference from Fournette to Dont'a Foreman..

On the other side, Henry is a lot quicker and more versatile than Jacobs was. Jacobs wasn't especially talented, but had good stats, because those Giants teams had very good o-lines. He was often outperformed by the likes of Ahmad Bradshaw and Derrick Ward, let alone by Tiki Barber.

Fournette is a very good runner, probably the best in the draft this year, though certainly not on AP's level, but he's so far behind in in the passing game, that I honestly think a team is making a big mistake if he's a top-20 pick. Especially when you can likely get a better player at a more important position, and then come back a round later and get a better RB in Mixon. 

I must have missed it last year, but apparently people were WAY too low on Elliott, because I saw nothing to suggest any of Fournette, Cook or Chubb were on his level.

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People always freak out whenever somebody is compared to a HoFer (or even somebody that just had a good season)... The same level of criticism levied against Fournette I've heard made against LaDainian Tomlinson, perhaps even more so (one dimensional, didn't catch passes, etc...).

I don't get how anyone can think Elliott is a better runner than Fournette... production is predicated on talent, not the other way around.

 

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I'd be willing to bet that if Cook or McCaffrey or Mixon was at LSU they'd have a similar number of catches to Fournette. The QB play was terrible and there were hardly any plays called for him to run routes.  When he was asked to run routes or catch down field, he did well.  It's not like he has bricks for hands like some RBs. He catches with his hands away from his body.

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1 hour ago, chinawildman said:

People always freak out whenever somebody is compared to a HoFer (or even somebody that just had a good season)... The same level of criticism levied against Fournette I've heard made against LaDainian Tomlinson, perhaps even more so (one dimensional, didn't catch passes, etc...).

I don't get how anyone can think Elliott is a better runner than Fournette... production is predicated on talent, not the other way around.

 

Elliott is the more well rounded runner.  He's got better vision, balance, and he's more patient.  He doesn't really have any holes, unlike Fournette.  That said, when Fournette has the ball and room to run--he's a different animal.  And that's really saying something, because Zeke is plenty explosive himself.  Even Gurley doesn't measure up here.  

I think the knocks are valid on Fournette, if slightly overblown.  I just think his strenghts will make him a force despite them.  And I don't think he's one dimensional.  He's a hands catcher and has shown promise in pass protection.  I think he's got a solid shot at becoming a 3-down back.  

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32 minutes ago, steelers1080 said:

I'd be willing to bet that if Cook or McCaffrey or Mixon was at LSU they'd have a similar number of catches to Fournette. The QB play was terrible and there were hardly any plays called for him to run routes.  When he was asked to run routes or catch down field, he did well.  It's not like he has bricks for hands like some RBs. He catches with his hands away from his body.

Thats a huge reason I am not concerned about this shotgun vs fullback production argument.  People dont understand how bad the passing game at LSU got the last few years.  

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2 hours ago, steelers1080 said:

I'd be willing to bet that if Cook or McCaffrey or Mixon was at LSU they'd have a similar number of catches to Fournette. The QB play was terrible and there were hardly any plays called for him to run routes.  When he was asked to run routes or catch down field, he did well.  It's not like he has bricks for hands like some RBs. He catches with his hands away from his body.

He had a 16.7% drop rate last year.

https://www.profootballfocus.com/draft-pff-scouting-report-leonard-fournette-rb-lsu/

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  • Faust changed the title to RB Leonard Fournette, Bucs

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