[Remember to check the '2010 NFL Draft' section for all stories relating to the draft.]
On paper, the New York Giants running back situation looks like a crowded cabinet where there isn't room to shove in any other pieces.
Is that really the case, however? There are questions about each running back on the roster.
Will Brandon Jacobs ever be healthy for a full season? Is Jacobs still interested, or is he more worried about boxing these days? Even if both of those answers are 'yes,' you still have to ask one more question. Has Jacobs already begun to decline? After three off-season surgeries on his feet and ankles, what will Ahmad Bradshaw be able to contribute? How will Achilles Tendon surgery impact Andre Brown? Can Gartrell Johnson or D.J. Ware actually become important players?
So, all of those questions lead to another one. Why not consider grabbing a running back early in the NFL Draft?
Which, in a long-winded way bring me to California's 5-foot-10, 195-pound running back, Jahvid Best. He is the subject of today's Daily NFL Draft Prospect Profile. Let's take a closer look.
Jahvid Best Scouting Reports
From SB Nation's Mocking The Draft.
Best has showed elite ability with the ball in his hands and has the potential to be a big time playmaker at the next level. His speed and quickness can be a factor from day one and every offense is always looking to add another player that is a threat to score every time he touches the ball. With that said, Best does not have the frame, bulk, or strength to handle every down duty in the league. The lack of ability to break tackles and pass protect are alarming red flags that cannot be overlooked. On top of that, Best suffered a severe concussion and neck injury in 2009 that ended his season early and is will be coming in to the league with some surgery history to both his elbow and ankle. Now if he can be put in to a system where is a change of pace back, his value to a team will be tremendous. But if he is depended upon to be on the field for 30+ plays per game, his flaws will be exploited. With that said, Best has top 10 ability but his weaknesses are tough to overlook and it could bump him down to the middle of the 2nd round.
From the National Football Post, which ranks him even with C.J. Spiller as the best two running backs in the draft.
An explosive stop-and-start athlete, Best has a great first step and gets up to top-end speed instantly out of his break. Is very agile and shifty in the open field and consistently shows the ability to make the first man miss. ... Lacks ideal power at the line of scrimmage and is tripped up too easily by arm tackles. But his natural feel for the game and instincts at the line of scrimmage make him a dynamic runner. ... Overall, he's as explosive and sudden as you can get. I love his natural running instincts and toughness for a back his size. He looks like a big-play threat and true play maker at the next level.
From Walter Football, which is a great site but always seems to remind me of the guy who will never smile no matter what.
Jahvid Best is a great runner of the football, but he isn't a great running back because he lacks some power running the ball and he is a poor pass protector. He has good hands and some very intriguing tools. Best is a great change-of-pace back and should come off the board in the late first to early second round. Running backs are a dime a dozen, so this hurts his draft stock as running backs are often drafted lower than their talent.
Why Best fits with the Giants
Because in many ways Roger Goodell seems determined to turn the NFL into a glorified version of Arena Football, and you simply have to be able to put up points. So, as '57 recently wrote in a FanPost, why not just collect as many offensive weapons as you can? Why bother with defense when those guys aren't allowed to hit anyone, anyway? On top of which, who cares about Best not being a guy who can handle 30+ touches a game? NFL backs don't get that nowadays, anyway, and the Giants are among the teams splitting ball-carrying duties several ways.
Why the Giants should pass
First, because the traditionalist in me says that the despite the Arena Football trend, you still have to play some defense, And the Giants have a lot of defensive holes to fill. Also, despite not having anyone quite like Best the Giants do have an assortment of capable backs to choose from. All they need to do is open some holes to run through.