Derrick is your typical vertically-challenged running back that has excellent skills to play his position. He might be the most technically sound running back in this draft. He reminds me of Warrick Dunn who was also a short in stature, but technically sound running back drafted at pick 12 in the 1997 draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Derrick understands how to set up blocks and has the vision, quickness and football intelligence to make cuts in the hole and break tackles. Derrick has that unusual skill of not taking the full force of a tackle and falling forward. He is excellent picking up the blitz and catching the ball out of the backfield; he also exhibits excellent football intelligence. Derrick has the hands and the ability to catch the ball down the field and can be used as a slot receiver and impact for his team like Wes Welker does for the Patriots. In a spread offense, Derrick would be a nice weapon and a match-up nightmare for opponents. If you move him around your offense, he will impact and become a core player and a fan favorite for the team that drafts him.
Derrick (because of his size) has to be drafted by the right team, play in the right offensive system and play for an offensive coordinator who is willing to use him in different ways. That's a lot of if's.
In the Super Bowl this year, both cold weather teams' main style of offense was a spread offense. Derrick is an impact player in a spread offense. The Colts & Patriots also use mostly spread offenses...so what's my point you ask?! In the last few drafts, players like Derrick are selected later in the draft because teams think of that size player as just a third down back/special teams player. Derrick would fit that role nicely, but I just think using him all over the offense because of his intelligence and skills is the smart way to get your bang for your buck in selecting Derrick. Teams copy other teams and if you want a spread offense to work, then you need the versatility of a player like Derrick. He is multi-talented and can play more than one position at an impact level. So look for Derrick on Rob's board for where he will be selected. My guess is because of his size, teams will look at him somewhere in the third or fourth rounds; however, if your team runs mostly a spread offense and drafts Derrick at all, consider yourself lucky because this kid will make your spread offense even more dangerous than it is right now. Remember this...impact players can come in any shape or size.
The BS Detector
Drew Boylhart Mar/11