Eddie Lacy Alabama RB Scouting Report

By: PFC Draft Writer Matt Moore (@Matt23Moore)

Lacy

Eddie Lacy (Via Alabama)

Eddie Lacy is coming off a phenomenal junior season and is arguably the best running back in the whole 2013 draft class. The two time NCAA champion possesses a prototypical NFL running back physique; standing at 6’0’’ and weighing 220 pounds. Lacy spent one year as Alabama’s premier running back in which he was a part of 17 rushing touchdowns, 1,182 rushing yards, and 6.4 yards per carry en route to becoming an All-SEC selection. Lacy capped his final season with Alabama with an impressive 140 yard performance against Notre Dame in the National Championship. After a successful collegiate career, he will be looking to bring his winning ways and productivity to an NFL team.

Strengths

Lacy provides a unique combination of strength and agility. He will punish you when he puts his head down, and at the same time has the capability to juke you out of your shoes. His feet remain running on contact, which will be a huge part of his game at the next level where tacklers are not so forgiving. Lacy’s vision is another thing that really impressed me. He finds the hole quickly and bursts through it. When there is a cut back opportunity Lacy is quick to take advantage and nimble enough to get through the lane. Balance is another one of Lacy’s impressive intangibles. It was evident in college that arm tackles were not going to bring down such a balanced and powerful running back. If you are not wrapping up on Lacy, then you might as well just get out of his way. The greatest part of Lacy is that he is aware of his strengths. “Just being able to be a powerful runner if I need to or an agile runner and make people miss,” he said “with my size, being able to be agile and make people miss, that’s really key.”

Weaknesses

Straight away speed is a large weakness for Lacy. We never really got a full glimpse at his 40-yard dash due to a hamstring injury suffered in training for the NFL combine that caused him to miss both the combine and Alabama’s Pro Day. However, you can often times see in college that Lacy lacks the true breakaway speed of an elite NFL running back. That is not to say that he cannot be a productive running back at the next level, but speed is crucial in the league. The passing game could also be considered one of Lacy’s weakenesses. NFL offenses are obviously making the transition to a pass first philosophy. Lacy is unproven in the passing game. Don’t get me wrong he could be a good screen option, but he does not provide a lot of creativity that NFL offensive coordinators drool over.

Tools

Lacy is coming from an Alabama program that has produced two stud running backs in recent years: Mark Ingram and rookie phenom Trent Richardson. As I previously stated, Eddie Lacy is the ideal build for a running back in the NFL (6’0’’ 220 LBS). Much like his predecessor, Richardson, he is muscular from head to toe. He is big enough to get through a bruising NFL season, while remaining light on his feet.

Character/Attitude

With Nick Saban as a coach, character is something that has been demanded from Lucy for three years now. Lacy provides a lighthearted feel in his interviews, often laughing and joking with the media. He does so while remaining professional and relaxed. Lacy understands the importance of the team and will accommodate to his club’s needs in the future. No major character issues appear prevalent in Lacy, an all-around class act. I also like the attitude that Lucy brings to the running game. He runs with a purpose and is looking to punish smaller defenders.

Passing Game

Alabama liked to use Lacy as a check down in the middle of the field. This paid dividends for the Crimson Tide as Lacy was typically able to make a few people miss to pick up extra yardage. However, the extent of Lacy’s receiving abilities is pretty much limited to check downs, screens, and flat routes as per usual with any NFL style running back.

Running Style

Vision is something that Lacy definitely possesses. He likes to bounce runs to the outside and make people miss at the second level. Often times, Lacy displays a fair amount of patience waiting for sweeps and power runs to develop. In the second level, you really get a good idea of his power and elusiveness. He has no problem lowering his head and muscling through the defense. The spin move is really a trademark of Lacy. He likes to use it in to bounce out a run or sweep off lunging defenders.

Running ability

Outside rushes are really Lacy’s forte. He has great ability to pop out runs and make people miss on the outside with a variety of different moves. That does not stop him from cutting a run back up the middle and using strength to power through defenders. His ability between the tackles is a little less proven, but is not too much of a concern. In goal line situations he has the athletic ability to leap over piles or the brute strength to rush through multiple attackers.

Team Projections

For the first time since 1963 it is possible that a running back could not be selected in the first round of the draft. Lacy is most likely a late first round or early second round pick, but should be the first running back to be picked off the board. A running back has been a missing key for Green Bay for a few years and are probably the most likely to make a move for Lacy. The Steelers will definitely be searching for help in the running game with Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman both showing little production last year. The Chargers may be interested due to Ryan Matthews injury struggles. Inconsistency with Knowshon Moreno with the Broncos could have Lacy packing his bags for Denver.