Mark Ingram NFL Draft Scouting Report

 Mark Ingram

5'9", 215 pounds | Running Back | Alabama

Running Ability/Speed: Ingram is the best pure running back in this years draft. He runs with great technique, keeping his stance low and forward while still running "behind his pads". It helps create a smaller target for defenders while maximizing his momentum and speed forward. Ingram isn't a burner with his speed, but he explodes into his second gear as he hits the line of scrimmage and can take the ball the distance if defenders whiff on tackles or take improper angles.

Field Vision:  Ball carrier vision is more than just running behind blockers. Ingram is able to set up his lineman's blocks and make cuts off of them, getting every possible yard out of each carry. Does a good job of seeing the cutback lanes and knowing when to take the ball outside. He rarely out runs his blockers or into them while they are making their blocks.

Balance/Breaking Tackles: Ingram possesses great balance which helps make all other aspects of his game that much better. Being a balanced runner keeps him from falling over downed players when he rushes through the line and bounce off attempted tackles without being knocked to the ground. Doesn't have a great stiff arm, but can cut on a dime and if defenders don't wrap him up, he has a great chance of getting more yards.

Pass Catching/Blocking: The major flaw in Ingram's game is when the offense needs to throw. He doesn't anchor well in pass protection and often times will simply throw a shoulder at the rusher as they close in on the quarterback. Try to pass pro like that in the NFL and defenders will simply bowl over him and run right pass him as he tries to throw his body at them. He has soft hands to catch passes, but doesn't run crisp routes out of the backfield. Most of these faults are fixable through coaching, however, he will still need plenty of reps to perfect it and that could take a while.

Games Viewed: '10: LSU, Auburn, Arkansas, South Carolina '09: VTech, Arkansas, LSU, Florida, BCS Championship

Final word: Ingram has had a very celebrated career in college, but I don't think he will be a running back in the pros in the vein of Chris Johnson or Adrian Peterson. He can be the lead back in a tandem, but doesn't have the all around game to be a solo act. The combine is around the corner and the one thing that could really help Ingram's stock would be running a 4.3 40. This wouldn't push him into the top 10 picks, but his biggest question right now is his top end speed as there are several instances where he was catch from behind by defensive lineman (most notably by Auburn DE Antoine Carter who also knocked the ball loose and out of the back of the end zone in this years Iron Bowl).

Answering that concern could see him go in the Top 15 like Ryan Matthews last year, but that comparison could also work against him. Both running backs that were taken early in the '10 draft (C.J. Spiller and Ryan Matthews) failed to make much of an impact for their lofty draft position and the two most productive rookie running backs from last season were undrafted free agents (LeGarrette Blount and Chris Ivory) as was the Rushing Title holder (Arian Foster). Teams surely took note of this and with the trend to use multiple backs increasing across the league, Ingram's stock will be down despite his talent.

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