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2021 NFL Draft profile: Running back Michael Carter

The Denver Broncos need a running back to pair with Melvin Gordon. Is Michael Carter the guy for the job?

NCAA Football: Senior Bowl Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

When the Denver Broncos decided to let Phillip Lindsay walk (who then signed with the Houston Texans), they decided to bring in former Minnesota Vikings running back Michael Boone to compete for the spot behind starter Melvin Gordon. However, Boone has spent most of his career as a special teamer so the team might be looking to the 2021 NFL Draft to add more bodies to the position group. North Carolina’s Michael Boone might be the right fit if the Broncos can snag him on Day 3.

Michael Carter — Running Back — UNC

Height: 5’8” Weight: 202 lbs.
Bench: 16 | Arm Length: 29 1/8” | Hands: 9”
40 Yard Dash: 4.50 | Vertical: 34.0 | Broad Jump: 9’11”
Draft Projection: Middle Rounds

Scouting Report

The good
  • An agile/shifty ball carrier
  • Legs never stop churning
  • Nice burst and short range speed
  • Good vision between the tackles
  • Excellent pass catcher out of the backfield
  • Difficult to bring down from low angles
The bad
  • Goes down fast if tackled above the waist
  • Does not have breakaway speed
  • Situational type running back

Game Film/Highlights

Why he fits

I liked what I saw from Carter. He reminds me of a C.J. Anderson type of running back who could complement Gordon nicely in the run game. If the Broncos end up with a guy who is anywhere near Anderson good then they will be a really good shape for a couple of years at least.

When you see how Carter’s vision helps him get through tight windows in the run game, you can see how well he’ll be able to use that ability in the NFL where things are always a fraction of a second to daylight.

Why he doesn’t fit

There isn’t much not to like about Carter from a standpoint of how he would fit with the Broncos and where he might be available on draft weekend. He won’t be asked to be an every down running back, so pairing him with a guy like Gordon it could be a good offensive setup for Denver.

If the focus on offense isn’t going to be running the ball much, then maybe I could see Denver not wanting to waste draft capital on a position they don’t intend to use much. However, with Drew Lock or a rookie at quarterback, I suspect the running game will need to be a focal point regardless.

Final Thoughts

From my view, I think throwing a 4th rounder at Carter is a win-win type situation. He is a physical running back who can sneak through the line for positive yards due to his size and shiftiness.

The biggest positive will be in the passing game. That was an area where Lindsay never fully developed and its an area where Carter excelled in college. Getting Lock or whoever might be the starter in 2021 a reliable outlet to check down to is going to be huge.

What do you think Broncos Country?


Would you like to see the Broncos use a Day 3 pick on Michael Carter?

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