Tag Archives: Darrell Henderson

2019 NFL Draft recap, pick-by-pick: NFC West

    Murray (No. 1 pictured) was often tasked with finding passing lanes behind a mammoth offensive line in school.

 

Arizona

Cardinals

Notable Picks: Two-time executive of the year Steve Keim let the draft come to the team patiently.  It is a big reason he picked up a center who we felt was one of the best overall players in the draft in Gaillard.  He may be able to battle for a backup spot.  Miles was an underrated athlete and collegiate left tackle with a legitimate six-inch punch.  The trade of 2018 first-round pick Josh Rosen to the Miami Dolphins netted the team its second round pick (62nd overall), UMass WR Andy Isabella, and a fifth-round pick in 2020.  Allen is a heck of a football player and may have to provide a presence as an interior pass rusher after the team didn't pick up a true outside rusher in the draft.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (1) Kyler Murray QB/

Oklahoma

17/1st Round Murray’s disciplined pocket approach is complemented by an ability to create once the pocket breaks down.  Whether or not the team did enough to address its offensive line is to debate, but it could be argued that its starting five is already in place.
2 (33) Byron

Murphy

CB/

Washington

24/2nd Round DraftNasty’s top-ranked corner has all of the tools to develop into a frontline starter. For this to be a value pick, he has to develop into at least an immediate starting nickel.
2 (62)

Acquired from Miami in the Josh Rosen trade

Andy

Isabella

WR/UMass 137/3rd Round For better or worse, Isabella’s name will always be associated with Josh Rosen’s in terms of who got the better end of the deal.  In an offense where slot wide receivers have had large degrees of success on fade routes from the slot, Isabella’s speed will put pressure on defenses. He has been inconsistent tracking the ball down the field.
3 (65) Zach Allen DE/Boston College 190/3rd Round Allen gets as many points for batting down footballs as he does putting the quarterback on the ground.  In school he notched 14 pass break-ups, but he also tallied 40.5 tackles for losses. He is a feisty defensive end who excels at playing to half a man. 
5 (139) Deionte Thompson S/Alabama 66/2nd Round Although he is somewhat of a shoulder-block tackler, the 195-pound Thompson rarely runs away from contact.  Injuries clouded his postseason and left scouts wondering about his durability. 
6 (174) KeeSean Johnson WR/Fresno State 175/3rd Round One of the draft’s best route runners, Johnson plays a game that doesn’t rely completely on long speed.  He is adept at changing his speeds to achieve separation at the top of routes.  His ball skills are above average.
6 (179) Lamont

Gaillard

OL/Georgia 51/2nd Round We were bullish on Gaillard’s stock and certainly ranked him higher than most teams.  We like the fact that the former four-star recruit has experience at both OG and OC.  He has finishing DNA as a football player.
7 (248) Joshua Miles OL/Morgan State 227/4th Round Not many 314-pounders notch 36-inch vertical jumps.  This is a mere additive for the former Morgan State left tackle.  He became the first player from the school drafted since Visanthe Shiancoe in 2003 and just the second since 1982.
7 (249) Michael Dogbe DL/Temple 235/4th Round Dogbe translates perfectly as a four-technique DE for the Cardinals and his quick, slippery nature could get him looks at a three-technique position in Bear fronts.  He can play a number of spots in obvious pass rush situations, but he is sound defending the run versus reach or angle blocks.
7 (254) Caleb Wilson TE/UCLA 207/4th Round Mr. Irrelevant has 4.56 speed but limited thump as a point of attack blocker.  He became more willing in this regard as a cross-blocker when at the fullback or U-off position, but he is at his best after the catch or when working the seams of the field.
Collier (No. 91 pictured) had 14.5 quarterback sacks and 20.5 tackles for losses in 42 career games.
Seattle Seahawks Notable Picks: Fair or unfair, this draft may very well come down to a comparison between the team’s first-round pick L.J. Collier and the departed Frank Clark (Chiefs).  It shouldn’t.  GM John Schneider used the trade to pick up a 2020 second-round pick, swapped a third-rounder in 2019, and then traded its own first-rounder (21st overall) to the Green Bay Packers for its 30th pick in the first round and then picked up the 114th overall pick (4th round) and 118th overall pick (4th round).  After that, the ‘Hawks traded the 30th overall pick in the first round to the New York Giants for the 37th overall pick (2nd Round), a fourth-round pick (132nd overall) and a fifth-rounder (142nd overall). They used that fifth-round pick to select Washington LB Ben Burr-Kirven. What did they do with the 37th overall pick?  They traded it to the Panthers to get the 47th overall pick (Marquise Blair) and the 77th overall pick (3rd Rounder).  They used their other draft capital to trade back up into the third round with the Vikings to select Barton 88th overall while receiving the 209th overall pick (Christmas). There were other trades and moves that allowed a team with limited selections to end up grabbing 11 players, but you get the point.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1(29)  L.J. Collier DE/TCU 125/3rd Round Collier was always a flex player for the Horned Frogs, but he arguably turned in his best season in 2018.  His improved play defending the run complemented an improvement when it came to setting up his pass rush moves.  He had two sacks, two tackles for loss and a forced fumble in the 2019 Senior Bowl. 
2 (47) Marquise Blair S/Utah 58/2nd Round It would not at all be a surprise to see Blair employed as a potential cornerback.  We felt as if his fluidity could work at the position, much like the safety the Seahawks took a season ago in Tre Flowers.  Blair, however, is unique in his skill at translating speed-to-power on contact as a tackler.  Will his frame hold up with his violent playing style?
2 (64) D.K. Metcalf WR/Ole Miss 37/2nd Round Metcalf’s lack of production can be attributed to a lack of repetitions due to injuries, some of them fairly major in nature.  When healthy, the former Rebel has demonstrated range, power and tracking skill down the field.  Can he put it all together as a route runner?      
3 (88) Cody Barton LB/Utah 177/3rd Round Although Barton presents a tad bit of stiffness, he often corrects his angles of pursuit.  Barton projects as a Will linebacker.  The former high school DB has awareness in coverage and can contribute in sub-packages.
4 (120) Gary Jennings WR/West Virginia 116/3rd Round The Seahawks continue to load up on wideouts with the uncertain status of WR Doug Baldwin.  Jennings impressed outside the numbers in the postseason after winning for most of his career in the slot with toughness and 4.4 speed. 
4 (124) Phil Haynes OL/Wake Forest 165/3rd Round Haynes competed well at the guard spot after initially playing the right tackle position earlier in his career.  His length will serve him well as a backup at both guard spots initially, but he has starting potential.
4 (132) Ugo Amadi All-Purpose/Oregon 271/4th Round Amadi’s ability to return punts is supplemented with an ability to cover the slot, contribute off the hash and as an eighth man in the box. 
5 (142) Ben

Burr-Kirven

LB/

Washington

200/4th Round The former high school track & field runner was often a blur running by his teammates on his way to an FBS-best 176 tackles.  His segmented nature, however, does result in some misses in space.  The former Husky reads the eyes of the QB well in zone coverage. 
6 (204) Travis Homer RB/Miami (Fla.) 170/3rd Round The team values special teams production and it doesn’t get much better than Homer’s 22 career tackles.  In-between running down at the gunner spot or on kickoff coverage, Homer used his 4.4 speed to rush for over 900 yards in back-to-back seasons. 
6 (209)

Compensatory pick acquired via Minnesota

Demarcus Christmas DL/Florida State 254/4th Round There is still a place for Christmas on an NFL roster.  While most point to his lack of sack production, it is worth noting that he broke up 13 passes in his career. 
7 (236)

Acquired from Jacksonville via Baltimore

John Ursua WR/Hawaii 413/5th Round Ursua finished his career with 189 receptions and 24 TDs while averaging over 14 yards per catch.  He has been an effective slot receiver and could add a different element of quickness in the slot.  His injury history is a concern at just 178 pounds.
Bosa, pictured, did 29 reps at 225 pounds at the 2019 NFL Combine and recorded a 4.14 20-yard short shuttle.

 

San

Francisco 49ers

Notable Pick: Over the last three years GM John Lynch has put together a talented roster. His draft picks from this year continue to indicate he is intent on building it through the draft.  Samuel and Bosa are the headliners, but both have extensive injury histories. They need to stay healthy.  If he has as much success with his 2019 third round pick (Hurd) as he had with his 2018 selection (Fred Warner), this draft could land high marks in a couple of years.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (2) Nick Bosa Ohio State 3/1st Round Bosa has all of the tools to become a potent bookend at the DE spot opposite Dee Ford.  We think he will provide matchup problems if aligned on the left side versus the tackles of the Rams, Seahawks and Cardinals. Can he stay healthy?
2 (36) Deebo Samuel All-Purpose/

South

Carolina

69/2nd Round In 30 career games, Samuel scored 32 touchdowns.  There was a marked difference when we viewed him early in the season as opposed to the postseason (due to past injury issues).  He has had injury scrapes in each of his seasons on campus.  If not, he may have been a Top 15 pick. 
3 (67) Jalen Hurd WR/Baylor, Tennessee 97/3rd Round Hurd could have made an impact at the 2019 Senior Bowl, but was unable to participate due to injury. After starring as a running back early in his career at Tennessee, he impressed with his work in the slot at Baylor in 2018.  The big question he faces is whether he can be as effective outside the numbers.
4 (110)

Acquired from Cincinnati

Mitch

Wishnowsky

P/Utah 451/5th Round Wishnowsky has a wide repertoire of punts.  From the running rugby-style (which he won’t use) version, he’s executed the now popular hook punt.  We think he can perfect this and some of his other punts from a traditional punting platform, which he executed from on occasion with success.  His highest hang times got up into the high 4-second range, but he was generally capable in the 4.6-range depending on the style of kick. He can also kickoff.
5 (148)

Acquired from Denver

Dre

Greenlaw

LB/Arkansas 186/3rd Round The operative thinking is that Greenlaw will just provide depth as a fourth or fifth LB who could see time in sub-packages.  However, we think he could challenge Malcolm Smith in due time.
6 (176) Kaden Smith TE/Stanford 241/4th Round Smith was one of the best tight ends in this year’s draft at making contested catches on seam passes.  If he can overcome his pedestrian speed to earn a roster spot, he could allow Kyle Shanahan to incorporate some two tight end receiving sets.
6 (183)

Acquired from Cincinnati

Justin Skule OT/Vanderbilt 389/5th Round Skule will have every opportunity to grab the third tackle spot behind Staley and McGlinchey.  He’s probably best suited to backup McGlinchey, who he is nearly identical to in terms of size and quickness.  He played LT as a senior at Vanderbilt, but he did start at RT in school. 
6 (198)

Acquired from Cincinnati via Dallas

Tim Harris CB/Virginia 226/4th Round Harris is a developmental draft pick in the mold of former third-rounders Tarvarius Moore and Ahkeilo Witherspoon.  Moore started two games in 2018 and Witherspoon has quietly started 21 games in two seasons. Harris’ durability question marks overshadowed 4.4 speed and decent foot quickness.

 

Henderson (No. 8 pictured) averaged 8.9 yards per carry for the Tigers in 2018 and scored 25 touchdowns.

 

Los Angeles Rams Notable Picks: Despite not having a first-round pick, many would argue that the Rams got better value than each of their picks in the first three rounds.  We had Rapp ranked lower than some teams and Long earned a second-round grade from us.  Grabbing Gaines in the third round had to feel like a coup for the team.  The pick of Scott in the seventh round was the classic ode to special teams coordinator John Fassel, a future NFL head coach.  Scott was Penn State’s best special teams player in each of the last two seasons.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
2 (61) Taylor Rapp S/

Washington

94/3rd Round Rapp had a chance to go even higher had he put together a better 40-yard dash time (4.7), but he excelled in short area change of direction drills (3.99 20-yd SS, 6.82 3-cone).  On the field, he is a player who carries his pads.  He needs a lot of work timing his breaks when working off the hash marks.
3 (70) Darrell

Henderson

RB/

Memphis

154/3rd Round We spotlighted the explosive Henderson early in the year when he was averaging an insane amount of yards per carry.  In years past, the Rams have had bigger runners backing up Todd Gurley but this is a departure from that philosophy.  Henderson is an underrated receiver out of the backfield (15.5 YPR in 2018).
3 (79) David Long CB/Michigan 79/2nd Round The former high school wideout and U.S. Army All-American displays outstanding competitiveness in man coverage. He didn’t play quite as big as he measured in at during the postseason, but his flexibility is above average.
4 (134)

Acquired from New England

Greg Gaines DT/

Washington

106/3rd Round The nimble Gaines can translate speed-to-power when pushing the pocket and is underrated as a two-gapping force.  Gaines has even stood up to rush from the edge.
5 (169) David

Edwards

OT/

Wisconsin

288/4th Round Edwards has some technique flaws but his hip flexibility and footwork are both adequate.  The light-footed former TE battled through injury in 2018.  He needs to play lower to earn a roster spot.
7 (243) Nick Scott S/Penn State 438/5th Round The pick of Scott in the seventh round was the classic ode to special teams coordinator John Fassel, a future NFL head coach.  Scott was Penn State’s best special teams player in each of the last two seasons.  In 2018, he began to find another gear in pass coverage as well. 
7 (251) Dakota Allen LB/Texas Tech 218/4th Round Allen trusts his eyes and delivers on contact at a violent clip. The two-time team captain overcame off the field troubles to become one of the Red Raiders team leaders. His short area change of direction rivals that of many of the class’ top defensive backs.

Related Images:

Henderson providing early returns for Tigers

Perhaps no running back has made a more indelible mark on college football's first month than Memphis' Darrell Henderson.  The former South Panola High School (Miss.) star has been a factor since his arrival on campus, but this could become a season to remember.

Through three games, he is averaging nearly 14.5 yards per carry while leading the nation in rushing yards (521).  He is also tied for second in the country with six rushing scores.  The added strength he put on this offseason could explain some of his early season success (https://www.commercialappeal.com/story/sports/college/memphis-tigers/football/2018/08/04/memphis-tigers-football-darrell-henderson-mike-norvell-aac/858753002/).   Over the course of the last three seasons, DraftNasty has gotten the opportunity to see Henderson play live on three different occasions.  Here are some of the attributes which make him such a difficult player to get on the ground.

CONTACT BALANCE

Some of Henderson's best moves come in-between the hash marks setting up second and third-level defenders.  To get there with ease, he runs with a center of gravity low to the ground that allows him to bounce off would-be tacklers.  This becomes evident on the team's outside zone (stretch) run game principles versus force defenders.

Henderson (No. 8 pictured) ended 2017 with five consecutive 100-yard rushing performances.

The patience that he shows in allowing his offensive linemen to reach block defenders creates cutback lanes for him back into the middle of the field.  In the clip pictured to the left, he forces UCF free safety Tre Neal to overrun a tackling angle that results in a 30-yard touchdown scamper in the 2017 AAC Championship Game.  Neal weighs 215 pounds and Henderson -standing 5-foot-8- checks in around the 205-pound mark.

SPEED-to-POWER/YARDS AFTER CONTACT

Henderson gets to full speed in a hurry once he hits the accelerator button.  A combination of lower and upper body power allows him to run through tacklers.  Versus Georgia State last Friday, he buckled freshman safety Chris Bacon once he burst through the line of scrimmage.   Later in the first quarter, Bacon overran Henderson on a top-down angle as Henderson displayed his ability to stop-and-start with relative ease on an outside stretch play.  It resulted in a 54-yard touchdown that showcased his game-breaking speed.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Since arriving on campus, Henderson has showcased capability on special teams.  Although he has just four tackles in the course of his career, three came during his freshman campaign in 2016.  On his 18 career kickoff returns, he has averaged 22.5 yards per return with one score.  Overall, this is not an area (special teams) to expect to see him in much during the year, but he will show up as a kickoff returner and punt cover guy in big games (see 2017 AAC Championship Game).  As seen in the picture , he runs with passion as a kickoff returner.

HAND-EYE COORDINATION/VISION

Vision is one of the top characteristics many college recruiters identify at the running back position.  Aside from the outside zones, the Tigers used a combination of weakside one-back powers in 2017.  The team would pull its backside guard and tackle while blocking down with the center, guard, tackle and tight end on the front side of the formation.  When they did, it was Henderson's job (from an offset shotgun alignment) to find a crease and get vertical quickly.  They also employ him at the Wildcat quarterback in the shotgun to add an insert blocker on outside runs.  His cutback ability shines on these types of schemes.

As a freshman in 2016, the team used him on wheel routes from the offset running back position.  In these instances, he's shown the ability to snag passes away from his frame (3rd and 6, Cincinnati '16, vs. 3-cloud defensive look).   They also occasionally use him in the screen game to the weakside of their formations away from speed motion (by the Z-WR) to the strong side.  Versus Georgia State last Friday night, he lined up at  the No. 2 slot position to run a quick out in the team's Empty Gun Spread Trips Left formation.  Henderson averages 11.5 yards per reception for his career (53 receptions, 6 TDs).

BALL SECURITY

Despite 319 touches in three seasons, the eighth-leading rusher in Mississippi high school history has fumbled just twice during his time in school.  He holds the ball high and tight to his frame and rarely allows it to swing loose from his frame.

AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT

Despite the ball security, Henderson does have a tendency to run as a left-hand dominant runner.  Even when he is running to his right he is most comfortable with the ball in his left hand.  Take a look on the picture to the right.  Henderson is running a right kickoff return towards the right sidelines versus UCF in the 2017 AAC Championship Game with the ball high and tight in his left elbow.  While he is also able to jump cut and make defenders miss with sudden stops in momentum, he carries some tightness in the lower body.  As a tightly-wound athlete, he has to pay increased attention to flexibility moving forward.  He was unable to play in the 2017 Liberty Bowl versus Iowa State due to an undisclosed lower body injury.

Regardless, the former 2014 Mississippi Gatorade Football Player of the Year has increased his production at a time where the Tigers are transitioning from All-AAC quarterback Riley Ferguson to former Arizona State quarterback Brady White.  In three games, White has thrown 10 touchdowns to just one interception.  In his own estimation, Henderson is a big reason the transition has been so smooth.

"I love it," White said, when asked about having Henderson lined up behind him. "It makes my job easy. You just hand the ball off and watch him run to the end zone. It's been a huge help to have that guy in your backfield." (--https://gotigersgo.com/news/2018/9/14/football-henderson-white-lead-tigers-past-georgia-state-59-22.aspx)

---By: Corey Chavous, DraftNasty Staff Reports