Kenjon Barner or Ray Graham Who’s the Better Change of Pace


Something I’ve been wondering about a little bit recently is right now who intrigues you more as a change of pace back at the N.F.L. level. In my very preliminary rankings I have Ray Graham and Kenjon Barner right after each other. Both players are undersized, Barner is listed at 5’11 and 195 pounds by the Oregon Ducks on his bio page, while Graham is listed 5’9 195 pounds on his Pitt Panthers bio page.

Graham is an extremely shifty back who is slippery and reminds people a lot of LeSean McCoy coming out of college. Despite his game-breaker moniker McCoy only ran a 4.5 forty yard dash (at his proday he had no combine forty yard dash) in the forty prior to the 2009 N.F.L. Draft which is not astonishing, and actually is extraordinary average. But it is not his straight line speed that makes McCoy so good it is his agility, his  balance, and his ability to make defenders miss in the open field. McCoy is, perhaps, the league’s best receiving starting running back and that is what Graham’s strength is as a runner.

Kenjon Barner on the other hand is more slender than Graham and quite faster. While we’re in the habit of comparing players to other players who played at the same school–Barner is similar in many ways to recent Oregon Duck LaMichael James, but actually might be faster in a straight line. James ran a 4.45 and 4.41 forty yard dash at the combine and his proday. Barner is an instant game-breaker and could be a player that is used on special teams in the N.F.L. level.

Both players look like dangerous weapons at the N.F.L. level.

Which do you prefer at this early point?