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In the next installment of my 2016 NFL rookie class, we will explore the one year running back wonder Notre Dame’s CJ Prosise.   This converted wide receiver certainly turned heads this year with a thousand yard rushing season.  I viewed his games against Clemson, Massachusetts, Georgia Tech, USC, and Temple to get a well-informed idea of what this athlete will bring to the next level.cjprosise

RB- CJ Prosise, Notre Dame 6′ 220 lbs.

Cons: Because this is Prosise’s first year as a running back, he runs higher than the back should.  I believe this is more due to his rawness as a between the tackles runner than indicative of how he will play the position.  This also causes him to bounce more runs outside because the athlete is more comfortable in wide open spaces.  The back has issues picking up his feet which causes him to get caught up in the trash near the line of scrimmage on occasion.  There were a few times Prosise got caught flat-footed when the defensive line got initial pressure off the snap.  He tends to take ten yards or so to get to full speed, which might work well in college, but will need to improve in the NFL.

Pros: Due to his size, Prosise is no scat back.  He has good power/lean which helps running between the tackles, especially in short yardage situations, while always keeping his legs churning/falling forward.  Keep in mind, the back does not create space on his own, but is excellent at following his blockers to daylight.  The runner has great vision and loose hips which help him set up defenders on the next level with spins, stutter steps, shoulder shakes, jump cuts, and stiff-arms.  This one-cut and go back doesn’t give much to hit getting small in the hole.  Prosise always seems to be one step ahead by moving laterally with explosiveness and occasionally hurdling people in his way.  His quick and balanced feet make him hard to grab in open spaces.

As a pass protector, Prosise steps up and meets the rusher quickly, but can get overpowered.  His true gift is as a receiver out of the back field or spread out in five receiver sets.  The back has soft hands and runs various routes including a devastating wheel route.  He screams into the flat in a hurry and tracks the ball well in the air.  The runner does not give up on plays fighting for extra yardage and has a nose for the end zone.

Outlook: Sure Prosise is a bit on the raw side as a running back, but he has some great athleticism.  It is that part of his game that reminds me of Arizona’s David Johnson aka DJ Two.  Johnson played a lot of receiver and h-back as well in college.  I am excited to see where he goes in the NFL Draft as I have him a top eight rookie runner option. Thanks for reading.

You can follow me on Twitter @AndrewMiley or at the site @Dynasty_Blitz. 

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2 Comments

    • @OlingerIDP
    • Posted February 19, 2016 at 1:50 PM
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    Well said, sir!

    • GPT
    • Posted February 23, 2016 at 3:13 PM
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    Thanks for continuously cranking out the offseason magic!

    Waiting for next year in football Siberia…


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