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Karan Higdon

Scouting Report done by Mark Jarvis. See all his work at What’s on Draft. Support his work on Patreon.  See the full report here.

Comps – Low/Medium/High

Kedrick Rhodes (Low) – Anthony Wales (Medium) – Ka’Deem Carey (High)

Ability to Create Yardage

Not particularly elusive, which prevents him avoiding most backfield breakthrough. Nasty stiff arm disposes of distant attempts to get to his lower body. Agility is not at the level you expect for a typical change of pace back. Able to slide out of the way with jump cuts and smaller maneuvers, but he won’t plant hard against the grain. Has to play the role of bull in a china shop with most of his runs due to how difficult it is to make immediate adjustments. Likely to struggle creating for himself outside of structure, but will make defenders work for every tackle. Seems out of control at times with his approach, but it’s often the only way he can overcome his flaws. Lateral movements don’t get enough depth to evade contact. Coordination and body control concerns are legitimate.

Speed

Heavy-footed running style doesn’t allow him to turn the corner against linebackers. Average burst through the hole isn’t going to be enough to avoid getting snagged by linebackers. Outside runs are simply not going to be feasible unless he has a convoy carrying him upfield. Big play potential is scarce, not enough juice to get past the linebackers and into the secondary. Unable to erase angles and break free from pursuit. Underwhelming speed through changes of direction; has to gear down to make most of his cuts. Unlikely to see much improvement in regards to athleticism even if he drops weight. Shorter strides and average foot speed prevent him from finding another gear in the open field. Will be run down from behind by athletic linebackers. Pace needs to be more measured.

Power

Usually able to fall forward through tackle attempts despite his frame being on the smaller side. Chiseled body is packed up with muscle; seriously impressive build makes him a much stronger back than he should be. Not a natural pile pusher but he won’t get driven backwards on contact. Drops his shoulders into hits and lays out unprepared defensive backs. Wins the leverage battle but it might not matter as the level of strength increases in the pros. Always gets low when he is preparing for a hit; runs with a good center of gravity and looks braced for every collision. Tendency to dip too far down in search of leverage makes it difficult to stay on his feet through initial contact. More tough than powerful; doesn’t run with the requisite force to have guys falling off of him. Leg drive is hit or miss.

Vision

Decisive when attacking cutback openings. Makes his choices quickly in regards to the lane he selects. Adjustments are usually reactionary; only sets up against what is directly in front of him. Athletic limitations often prevent him from making the necessary movements to get out of backed up running lanes. Can set up defenders in one-on-one situations; has a nice stutter step to throw guys off his trail. Angry downhill running style forces defenders to get after him. No problems with hesitation prior to the hole or overthinking what he’s going up against. Open field running is going to be on tracks for the most part. Takes what is given to him by his blockers. Comfortable working in the hole and playing in tight spaces. Intimidated by runs outside the tackles; one-dimensional approach right now.

Pass Blocking & Receiving

Occasional reps working at the line of scrimmage have not been fruitful. Squares up and puts his whole body into blocks, but it didn’t matter much against Notre Dame’s linebackers when they blitzed. Primarily relied on cut blocks to find his success rather than using a quality punch. Technique is a tad jerky; not precise with his steps. Patience needs improvement; jumps into action too quickly and misses blitzers breaking through late. Lack of production is a receiver matches up with what he shows from a traits standpoint. Both inexperienced and ineffective in route-running attempts. Catch blocker instead of using his hands. No separation ability. Will need to work his way into passing down reps as a pro. May get overpowered.

Categories: 2019, RB
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