RB Pierre Strong Jr., South Dakota St.

5’11” – 207 lbs. – 4.37

Four-year starter who rushed for over a thousand yards in every season except 2020 (nine games.) Has an adequate build for a pro change-of-pace back. Demonstrates nice clean footwork and makes sharp cuts coming out of the backfield, most often on outside zone runs and tosses out of shotgun formations; overall vision/choices with the ball were pretty good during the games reviewed. Galloping runner with the speed and explosiveness to hit home runs when he finds an opening. Was also a wildcat weapon, with a few passing touchdowns. Production looks like it was inflated, having been able to run through some massive holes. Not the type of back who’s going to make something out of nothing in the backfield. Run power is limited; struggles to break tackles or make defenders miss in the hole. Would like to see more physicality and leg drive to finish runs; doesn’t fight for extra yardage or fall forward as consistently as most of the other top backs in the class. Ball security has been an issue. Usage in the passing game was very basic (simple  route tree, never reached 200 yards in a season.) Has a relatively high amount of tread relative to some of the other top back prospects as a fifth-year senior with almost 700 career touches. Could be a dangerous weapon in a zone scheme that clears big holes for him to hit, but will struggle if teams rely on him to pound the rock between the tackles and create for himself.

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