Photo of Duke Johnson
Drafted By: Browns
  • Round 3
  • Pick 13
  • Overall 77

Combine Results

Grade
5.75 ?
  • 4.54 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 33.5 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 121.0 INCH
    Top Performer

Draft Analysis:

"He really reminds me of Giovani Bernard of the Bengals. They are both built similarly. Johnson is very good out of the shotgun. The one thing on film that sticks out is his explosiveness and ability to turn the corner." -- LaDainian Tomlinson

  • 5'9" Height
  • 30 3/8" Arm Length
  • 207LBS. Weight
  • 9 1/4" Hands

Overview

Selected first-team All-ACC in 2014 and left Miami as school's all-time leading rusher (3,519 yards). Finished 2014 season with 1,652 yards rushing. Ran for 249 yards against Virginia Tech and 130 yards against Florida State. In 2013, selected second-team All-ACC, but suffered season-ending ankle injury against Florida State. Was the 2012 ACC Rookie of the Year and selected second-team All-ACC while rushing for freshman record 947 yards and 10 touchdowns. Set UM single-season record with 892 kick return yards. Rated No. 1 running back in the nation out of high school and won a 5A State Championship at Miami Norland along with draft entrant and Miami tackle, Ereck Flowers. His father, Randy, died from ALS in 2008.


Pro Day Results


40-yard dash: 4.5 and 4.51 seconds
Vertical jump: 35 inches
Short shuttle: 4.16 seconds
3-cone: 6.88 seconds
Bench: 18 reps of 225 pounds

Analysis

Strengths

Explosive burst and plays with suddenness. Elusive in tight quarters. Has lightning in his feet. Has hips and feet to stop and start without stalling. Rare ability on stretch plays to hit cutback lanes that other backs can't get to. Runs with patience and a well-timed burst. Has great feel as zone-scheme, one-cut runner. Changes direction without breaking stride. Courageous runner. Shows no fear when getting downhill. Strong-willed competitor with toughness. Has second gear around the corner and can erase the angles. Gets small(er) through the hole and runs behind pads. Fights through arm tackles. Regroups and balances himself after initial contact. Reads and sets up routes and adjusts to poorly thrown balls.

Weaknesses

Average inside runner, where feel and instincts are concerned. Vision fails him at times when running between the tackles. Won't always see initial hole and will mash turbo button, hoping to power through to second level. At times unwilling to do dirty work in pass protection. Looks for cut blocks rather than squaring up and playing with technique and toughness. Tries to run to daylight once in open field rather than just finishing runs. Hampered by injuries in 2014 and broke his ankle in 2013. Medicals will be combed over. Must improve ball security after fumbling six times over last two seasons.

Draft Projection

Round 2 or 3

Sources Tell Us

"Best outside zone back in this draft and it's not close. I just wish he was a little more willing as a blocker." - NFC running back coach

NFL Comparison

Justin Forsett

Bottom Line

One of the most explosive runners in college football during his time at Miami, Johnson doesn't need much of a crease to make defenses pay. His explosive quickness and elusiveness should help him adapt quickly to NFL speed. His feel and courage as a one-cut runner should earn him instant playing time. Johnson's lack of pass-protection skills and concerns about his durability could force him into a committee situation. He's perfectly suited for a role as a zone-scheme back.
-Lance Zierlein
C
Grade Title
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-8.99 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.50-6.99 Chance to become Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.00-6.49 Should become instant starter
5.50-5.99 Chance to become NFL starter
5.20-5.49 NFL backup or special teams potential
5.01-5.19 Better-than-average chance to make NFL roster
5.00 50-50 Chance to make NFL roster
4.75-4.99 Should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74 Chance to be in an NFL training camp
No Grade Likely needs time in developmental league.

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