Bilal Powell Scouting Report


Louisville RB, Bilal Powell (5’11”, 207-pounds)

Competitiveness: Shies away from no contact. In fact, seeks contact out — looking to lay wood on defenders. Never concedes a yard. Legs are always churning and arms are always pumping. Runs with determination, vigor, and passion every time he steps on the field. A fierce competitor that will rally the troops when necessary.

Vision/Patience: Displays excellent vision and patience. Knows how to let blocks and holes develop before accelerating. Picks his holes wisely, choosing the one that gives the best bang for the buck. Doesn’t do a lot of dancing behind the line of scrimmage or in the hole. Once a hole materializes, he sees it, picks it, then hits it.

Agility/Acceleration: Agility is average. Doesn’t have that jump cut that most like in their Running Backs. Lateral movement is good, not great, but elusiveness is below average. Not the type of back to put defenders on ice skates, but can plant his foot and change directions effectively. Acceleration is superb. Can cut and burst with some of the best backs in the nation. Speed is average, but top-notch acceleration allows him a head start to daylight.

Power/Balance: Plays with good pad level, which allows for maximum power upon contact. Dishes out more blows than he receives. Runs with a forward lean, always falling forward and picking up extra yards. Not the biggest back. Has a lean lower body. Will need to add muscle to his frame at the next level. Displays terrific balance, especially after contact. Has the ability to absorb hits and keep going.

Passing Game: Effective out of the backfield as a pass catcher. Uses his hands more often than his body to reel the ball in. Aggressive in pass protection. Shows good pop on contact and sticks with him man until the whistle. Not so great when cut blocking. Needs to work on keeping his head and eyes up when lunging at his target. Will miss because of this technique flaw.

Intangibles: 2010 All Big East selection. 2010 team captain. Carries tripled in 2010 and he took advantage of the opportunity. Put up amazing numbers in 2010 that rival any running back in the nation (229 carries, 1,405 yards, 6.1 avg, 11 touchdowns). Displays outstanding character, as coaches rave about his personality.

Overall Stock: Many people say the draft is weak when it comes to Running Backs. When I look at a guy like Balil Powell, I can’t disagree more. There may not be many Running Backs that warrant a first round selection, but there are many guys like Powell that will be quality guys for teams. The good thing about Powell is that he has a good combination of things that teams look for — short area speed, balance, vision, and toughness. The thing hindering his draft status is that he’s a one year guy. Prior to the 2010 season, he didn’t have much production. Scouts and coaches will be weary of a one-hit wonder. This may cause him to drop towards the tail end of the draft. Nonetheless, the team that takes a chance on Powell may have themselves a diamond in the rough. Had he played for a bigger school and got more carries, he may be known as a top three round guy.

NFL Comparison: Fred Jackson

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