Posted Wed Apr 11th by Christopher Hart
Recent rumors have surfaced that the Denver Broncos may heavily be considering drafting a running back with their first selection in the 2012 NFL Draft.
According to Cecil Lammey (NFL Insider for 102.3 Denver and senior writer for Footballguys.com) — the Broncos front office is impressed with early entrant running back Lamar Miller of the Miami Hurricanes. Lammey cites that the Broncos favor Miller’s big play ability over Boise State RB Doug Martin and feel that he has better rushing instincts than David Wilson of Virginia Tech. Other prospects that fans may have considered of interest to the Broncos, Washington RB Chris Polk and Oregon RB LaMichael James are said to not be viable options for the Broncos moving forward.
In a series of tweet responses to questions and inquiries from fans, Lammey furthers his tidbits by stating that the Broncos brass are comfortable with the value at defensive tackle in the second round and may very well wait to address their biggest need then. Whether or not you agree with waiting to address defensive tackle until later, the idea of bringing in a player like Lamar Miller to pair with Peyton Manning and Co. could reap serious benefits for the Broncos down the road.
Lamar Miller is one of the most electric and explosive offensive players in this years draft. Prior to the Hurricanes 2011 campaign, Miller spoke to reporters from the Sun Sentinel boasting that he would rush for 1,000 yards on the year. Some may say talk is cheap, but Miller backed up his statements with a strong performance rushing for 1,272 yards on 227 carries with 9 touchdowns as a redshirt sophomore. Additionally, Miller caught 17 passes for 85 yards and another touchdown, surpassing 1,300 yards of total offense and a stout 10 touchdowns for the year.
Miller’s time with the Miami program was short-lived. He only played two years for the Hurricanes, starting one and accumulated a total of 1,918 yards and fifteen touchdowns on only 335 carries. With those numbers, Miller sported a hefty 5.7 YPC average in his time at the U — one of the best in college football. The combination of his success in 2011 and a poor senior crop of running backs prompted Miller to declare early for the NFL Draft.
Lamar Miller Scouting Profile
Running Back, University of Miami
(5’11 — 213 pounds, 4.36 40-yard dash)
PROS: Miller is an instinctive runner with superb cutback ability. Has good size with the ability to add more weight to his frame. Explosive runner, with the speed, agility and burst to get to the outside and hit home runs and space. Shows good decisiveness between the tackles. Displays patience on the run, following his blockers well. Despite low catch totals, displays good awareness and hands as a pass-receiver. Youthful back that will turn 22 the day before the Draft with low mileage on his tires. Also poses value as a kickoff returner. Comes from a program known for producing excellent NFL rushers. Ideal fit is in a stretch-zone scheme where he can use his quick one cut’s.
CONS: Not experienced or polished in pass protection. Shows more wiggle and improvisation than necessary and can be tripped up easily. Runs upright and isn’t a guy who will break tackles. Played through nagging shoulder injuries through his past season, which could bring up a concern regarding his durability in the pros. Could be described as a one-hit wonder. Is he mentally prepared for the rigors of the NFL after a limited college experience?
PRO COMPARISON: Clinton Portis (Formerly of the Miami Hurricanes, Denver Broncos and Washington Redskins)
That being said — Trent Richardson is likely the top back on every team’s board this year, but the race for number two comes down to Miller, Wilson and Martin. I have Miller as a Top 40 player in this years draft, but he does not have a first round grade from me. He would have been better suited to go back to Miami and gain one more year of experience before declaring for the pros.
Overall, I think he is a great fit in Denver and would work well as a complimentary back to McGahee. He is a true difference maker at the position and could be the fire Denver needs to have an explosive offense in 2012. Miller has all the tools in the NFL to be a legitimate #1 tailback, but needs refinement and experience in the necessary areas to become an all-around threat. I would not advise selecting Miller at #25, but if the Broncos traded down and accumulated an extra selection or so, he would definitely have great value at the top of the second round.
How would the rest of Broncos nation feel if the Broncos made Lamar Miller their first draft choice?