The 2019 NFL Draft has concluded and I’ve decided to take a look at every draft selection by the Los Angeles Rams in detail. I’m sharing my thoughts with you guys on what these prospects did well and what they bring to the Rams moving forward. We covered second-round pick S Taylor Rapp last time, and that can be found here.
Going in order, next up is Memphis Tigers RB Darrell Henderson. Henderson was also a three-year starter in Memphis like Rapp, and he managed to rack up 431 rushing attempts, 3,545 rushing yards, 36 touchdowns, 63 receptions, 758 receiving yards, and eight receiving touchdowns in his college career.
Let’s take a look at the write-up:
Henderson doesn’t create much behind the line of scrimmage. Great fit in a zone blocking scheme. When running outside zone (the Rams ran more outside zone than any other NFL team last year), he shows solid vision, presses the line, and when appropriate, he makes one cut and goes. Good creator at the second level who also possesses breakaway speed. Productive runner from shotgun. Tough and has good balance when absorbing hits. Good hands though he wasn’t used a ton as a receiver. Upright running style. Can drop his shoulder and get physical. Enough speed and burst to reach the edge when appropriate. Solid patience which allows holes to develop. Finishes runs with power delivering big blows to defenders.
Have a look at this play where Henderson is running outside zone. It may look familiar because the Rams’ entire foundation on offense was centered around this running play:
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After getting to watch Henderson, I’m highly approving of the draft pick. He fits the Rams’ running game absolutely perfectly, and that’s exactly why he was the choice of running back in the 2019 draft class. He often ran outside zone in college, so the jump to the NFL (within the Rams’ offense) should only require a small transition. Henderson’s ability will prove to be a major key in allowing RB Todd Gurley to rest long stretches because of his troubled knee. For that reason, that is exactly why I believe Henderson was the perfect addition. He isn’t a change-of-pace back or a “compliment”, he does the exact same things as Gurley does. Henderson is a picture-perfect fit in the zone blocking scheme, and that’ll ensure the Rams will truly have no drop-off when it comes to rotating between RB1 and RB2. Lastly, the one thing Henderson does bring to the offense that they haven’t had yet (outside of tiny spurts last year with RB C.J. Anderson), is the ability to run effectively out of shotgun. Head Coach Sean McVay has claimed he wants to have more diversity in his offense, and having a true running threat even when deploying 11 personnel out of shotgun will do exactly that.
Next up on the docket is Michigan Wolverines CB David Long.