Now, he isn’t a real gifted straight-line guy and isn’t going to run away from too many defenders at the second level, but he displays a good initial burst out of his breaks, is a more dynamic/shifty athlete than his frame would suggest and possesses the type of package that makes me think this guy could be a potential bell cow type back in the NFL."
“The coaches told me it’s a definitely a decision to make, but right now the only thing to think about is finishing the season with this next game and the bowl game after that,” Leshoure said, via DailyIllini.com.
Illinois head coach Ron Zook admits the topic has been brought up and has advised LeShoure to be wary of NFL agents. “It’s a little different year for a lot of reasons. Obviously I don’t want to get into all that, but what’s going on in the NFL, it’s a little bit different,” Zook said. “I’ve talked to him about it a little bit. We will sit down and talk about it, but that’s the thing that everybody wants to talk about the future.”
The Champaign, IL native currently ranks as one of the top-five running backs eligible for the draft, according to the NFL Draft Bible. In terms of when an official decision could come, LeShoure seemed unsure.
“I haven’t quite sat down and weighed the pros and cons out yet, but getting my degree has always been something I’ve wanted to do, especially with my mother in the background preaching that.” Leshoure said. “I haven’t come to any conclusions or made any decisions.”"
Put up big numbers against tough Big 10 defenses, has only one game this year with less than 75 rushing yards... Illinois has put some good running backs into the NFL recently (Pierre Thomas, Rashard Mendenhall)... One of the few backs in this class that has the potential to be a true workhorse... This is his first season as a starter so he will come to the NFL without much tread on his tires... A complete running back, isn't flashy, but is the type of player who can carry the ball a ton, and contribute on passing downs.
Negatives: Top-end speed is just average... Really has only had one great season thus far... Often tries to break the big play rather than settle for a short gain, is prone to some negative yardage plays... Broke his jaw in 2008 after an altercation with a teammate at Illinois... Conditioning was a concern in the past... Takes most of his handoffs out of the shotgun in Illinois spread option offense."
LeShoure plays with a high-pad level and would be better suited getting his shoulders and frame lower and less upright. It could be a product of Illinois' average offensive line, but he sometimes tries to make things happen on his own without reading or following his blocks. This poor vision isn't something that can necessarily be coached but it can be improved via repetition and understanding of the play calls.
LeShoure is flying up draft boards but there are a lot of underclassmen running backs with a ton of talent.
He currently projects as a third to early fourth round pick in the 2011 NFL Draft with first to second round potential in 2012."
Again: Drafting Running Backs in the top 2 Rounds is bad medicine, in my view. But if you insist on that, I would strongly recommend you call on a Smasher of Mikel LeShoure's Caliber.
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