Photo of Andre Ellington
Drafted By: Cardinals

Combine Results

Grade
79.7 ?
  • 4.61 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 34.0 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 122.0 INCH
    Top Performer

Draft Analysis:

"I think pound-for-pound this kid competes as a pass protector, and I didn't see that when I turned on the tape. He's quicker than fast. His foot speed is balanced. His competitive nature all added up to a third-round pick." -- Mike Mayock

  • 5'9" Height
  • 31" Arm Length
  • 199LBS. Weight
  • 9 3/8" Hands

Overview

Ellington has flashed real speed and explosiveness over the past three years when given the opportunity. As a redshirt freshman, Ellington shared carries with Jamie Harper behind eventual top-10 draft pick C.J. Spiller (491 yards, four touchdowns). He played a major role in the offense the first half of his sophomore season (686 yards in seven games) but a toe injury limited him to one carry for no yards over the second half of the year. He had surgery on a ligament tear and fractured sesamoid bone that December.


The 2011 second-team All-ACC pick led the team with 1,178 rushing yards despite only besting 100 yard five times during the year and missing the Georgia Tech contest with an ankle injury (he had surgery after the season). He finished the season strong, however, with 125 yards in the ACC Championship Game win over Virginia Tech and 116 yards on just 10 carries during their blowout loss to West Virginia in the Orange Bowl (all early in the game when the outcome was still in doubt).


Ellington began his senior season with a 228 yard rushing performance against Auburn in the opener. The speedster finished the year with 1081 rushing yards, 232 receiving yards, and 9 total touchdowns, garnering first team All-Conference honors while helping Clemson earn its first eleven win season since 1981.

Analysis

Strengths

Possesses above-average straight-line speed. Attacks the line of scrimmage in one-back formations. Good vision and foot quickness for the cutback, has a burst through the hole and can accelerate away from oncoming defenders. Tough for college safeties to get an angle on. Excellent balance in the open field to cut, put his hand on the ground to stay upright, or even leap sprawling defenders. Runs with some lean for his size, and he lowers his pads pre-contact to get an extra yard. Takes big hits and bounces back up. Tight-ropes the sideline when necessary to maximize runs. Shows the ability to create behind the line of scrimmage when the play side breaks down, and the creativity and knowledge of pursuit angles to set up second level defenders. Shows patience running behind pulling guards and fullbacks, can cut in either direction off the block. Stiff-arm in the open field can be effective in keeping away defensive backs. Very dangerous in space. Good hands to be a threat as a receiver in the flat, over the middle, on screens, and down the sideline on wheel routes. Dangerous kick returner who can slide through creases and explode into the open with quick cuts and pure acceleration.

Weaknesses

Undersized, and lacks great power as an inside back, though he has some lower-body strength and the effort is there when trying to run clock. Does not possess elite agility to elude defenders in space, and can be brought down by glancing tackle attempts. Cuts are not consistently decisive or strong. Pass protection skills are lacking, lays down at the feet of defenders instead of holding his ground. Generally holds the ball high and tight, but upper-body strength is not exceptional so the ball will come out on occasion. Runs with a very narrow base, negating any power he might have.

NFL Comparison

Jahvid Best

Bottom Line

Ellington turned in a second-team All-ACC season in 2011 and first-team in 2012, taking the lead with back-to-back thousand yard rushing seasons. His elite straight-line speed (if only average size) allows him to press the line with authority and accelerate to freedom, yet he still shows patience when following his blockers –- a dangerous combination for opposing defenses. He has been productive and has shown toughness as an inside runner, but his size and limitations in pass protection will likely leave him as a rotational runner in the NFL. Space players with speed are at a major premium in the NFL, though, and he figures to go in the second round of the draft.
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Grade Title Draft (Round) Description
96-100 Future Hall of Famer Top Pick A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
85-95 Immediate Starter 1st An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
70-84 Eventual Starter 2nd-3rd A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
50-69 Draftable Player 4th-7th A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
20-49 Free Agent UDFA A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.

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