An Ohio State University
Size: 5'11, 230
Expected Round: 2nd
Strengths: Had an impressive senior year, carrying the team in multiple games. Optimal size and build. Always gets the extra yard or two. True short yardage runner, isn't just a big body. Impressive drive, always keeps his legs moving. Great balance to absorb the hit and keep moving. Breaks arm tackles with ease, tough to bring down in the open field. Quick in and out of cuts. Isn't known for his catching but consistantly shows good hands. Caught well at his pro day. Solid pass protector. Started out in Jim Tressel's pro style offense and adjusted well to running mostly out of shotgun with Urban Meyer.
Weaknesses: Doesn't have many flaws as a runner, but he does lack top end speed which limits his overall potential. Will have to adjust to speed of NFL defenders. Suspended three games after being a "person of interest" in a bar altercation, though the charges were dropped.
What is his role?
Stevan Ridley – 336 of 1,200 (28.0 percent)
Shane Vereen – 291 of 1,200 (24.3 percent)
LeGarrette Blount – 280 of 1,200 (23.3 percent)
Brandon Bolden – 278 of 1,200 (23.2 percent)
Leon Washington – 14 of 1,200 (1.2 percent)
Hyde is a back that can do it all. On the Patriots, he'd likely alternate early down carries with Steven Ridley in the same way LeGarrette Blount did last season. Assuming all backs are fully healthy (and Ridley has the fumbles figured out) the snap percentage would look something like 40-30-30 to Ridley, Hyde, and Vereen respectively. Vereen might get more snaps at WR in this scenario. (As a sidenote, I would love to see the Patriots employ more two back sets in the shotgun with Ridley/Vereen flanking Brady on each side. I think it's a good way for them to get their talent on the field and create mismatches.)
Will it change from year 1 to year 2? This is where drafting a running back makes a whole lot of sense. With Ridley and Vereen entering their contract years and the bulk of free agency over with, the Patriots should target a running back as an insurance plan and also as a way to push their two current starters.
Drafting Hyde would essentially make Ridley expendable and give the Patriots a long term tandem of Hyde and Vereen, which is not to shabby. Hyde would get a year to develop before taking over the early down role full time.
How many downs can he play? Hyde can do it all: run, catch, pass protect. He might not be your best third down guy, but he can get the job done.
Which current player will he beat out? He'll be drafted with the plan of replacing Stevan Ridley or Shane Vereen, but chances are he would beat out Ridley. I think Vereen is just too valuable and versatile for the Patriots to let him go.
What’s his ST value? None. Don't want your workhorse back playing special teams anyways.
Does he have positional versatility? Hyde is purely a running back. Don't see him anywhere else.
Why the Patriots? The more tape I see, the more I think this is a great fit. Coached by Urban Meyer and Jim Tressel, Hyde has played in multiple offensive systems. He's a natural runner that reminds me a bit of Corey Dillon and a lot of Ricky Williams, who Hyde says he models his game after. Hyde also makes sense based on the uncertianty with Ridley and Vereen's contract situations.
Why not the Patriots? I'm seeing Hyde mocked between rounds 1 and 3, so there's a chance he's gone before the Patriots even have a chance to take him. Mike Mayock currently has him pegged as a first rounder.
Verdict I wouldn't want to spend 29 on a running back, but I'm higher on Hyde than some others. He might end up as my BPA at that point. Running back is a sort of hidden need on the Patriots roster and with the wide receiver position looking set, Hyde would give the Patriots another talented offensive weapon. Just imagine the offensive versatility with Hyde, Ridley, and Vereen.
Oh, and Chandler Jones approves:
I like Carlos Hyde from O state... Shows speed and power— Chandler Jones (@Chan95Jones) April 1, 2014
Film Pointers (Northwestern, Michigan, Clemson)
@HuzaifaPatel95 Was about to say, Hyde was tremendous. All phases.— Rich Hill (@PP_Rich_Hill) March 30, 2014
1. Having watched Northwestern all year.....they're not the best tackling defense. But Hyde really dominated the Wildcat front 7 all game, slipping through arm tackles and piling up yards after contact. No need to list plays here--he did this all game long, from the first carry to the game winning touchdown.
2. Good vision, finds holes well. (:54)
3. Willing blocker (1:45)
4. Solid play. Catches the dumpoff, makes two guys miss and gets the extra yardage. (6:06)
5. Helps out the QB and slides forward to give him the throwing angle. It's what you want to see out of a RB out of the backfield that isn't really the go to guy but more of a dumpoff option. Basically, he has a feel for getting open. (8:00)
6. The next play is more of the same. He leaves the backfield and then sits in the open space and picks up the first down.
7. Picked up good yardage as the "closer", when NU knew they would be running the ball.
1. This play shows one of my favorite parts about Hyde's game. He's good at making himself "small" in creases. A lot of big guys just bowl through the hole which slows them down a bit. Hyde can slip through and keep his momentum and balance going forward. (:44)
2. I like that Hyde has spent a lot of time in both pro style and zone read. It might not apply to the Pats, but it's sure to make him appealing to a wide variety of teams.
3. Eddie Lacy spin. (2:00)
4. Not only does he break tackles, but he shows great balance to recover after doing so. (2:25)
5. Nice agility on the outside for his size. (6:33)
6. Big fumble there, but it isn't a problem with Hyde, even with his running style. Only four fumbles in his entire college career. (7:49)
1. It was clear from the beginning of this game that Hyde was going to have to work a little harder than usual for his yards (In relation to NU and Michigan defenses). Guys were in the backfield a lot more than the other two games.
2. A few good blocks on end arounds. (:47) (:57) (1:24) (5:27) (7:53)
3. Nice pass pro. Sack wasn't on him. (2:15)
4. Mistake by Hyde here. From his initial movement it looks like his assignment is to break into the flat, but seeing the double corner blitz he stays back to pass protect and ends up picking up no one. If he stayed his course, Miller might have had an outlet, or one of the rushers might have followed Hyde giving Miller a chance to evade one guy. (2:46)
5. Here's where Hyde will have some trouble in the NFL, especially if he lands on a team without a good O line. The first hole isn't there due to a good read by #34, and Hyde doesn't have the agility to make it to the second option fast enough before it closes. You're usually not asking him to hit that second hole though. (3:14)
6. Just a beastly run. Great power, great balance and great blocking by the O-line on a critical play of the game. Finishes the drive with the touchdown. (6:30)
7. Wow. Great hands catch. (8:00)
8. And another on the go ahead score. (8:23)