In recent years, many draft-niks have proposed that the NFL exists in a post-running back world. Even in this draft, where at least two high-level talents in Gurley and Gordon have flirted with first round consideration, many are reluctant to entertain the thought of a back going in the first round—until now. Just eight days before the draft, Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson tweeted that former Georgia running back Todd Gurley could go as high as the top 10.
This news comes in the wake of a recent report that declared Gurley medically cleared after his post-combine medical re-check. NFL teams have seemingly gotten over the bad taste of 2012 first round running back pair, Trent Richardson and Doug Martin, and may learn to love a back again in the first round. Of all players to test the waters with, Todd Gurley offers up a curious case. His 2014 ACL tear meant that teams didn’t get to test Gurley’s athletic measurements during the pre-draft process (though he was an accomplished track athlete at Georgia). It also means that teams aren’t at all put off by Gurley’s checkered medical past, which included a nagging ankle injury he suffered against LSU in 2013.
Otherwise, Robinson’s projection suggest that teams aren’t smitten by Winsconsin running back, Melvin Gordon, who came just 41 yards shy of breaking Barry Sanders’ collegiate single season rushing record. Either way, Gurley going in the top 10 certainly throws even more intrigue at the top of the draft. Considering the Mariota enigma, the Cooper vs. White debate, and now Gurley, the draft shouldn’t disappoint early on next Thursday night.