AJ Dillon's NFL Draft Stock Update
As the end of the 2019 season approaches, one of the biggest questions revolves around running back AJ Dillon and whether or not he returns to Boston College for his senior year. This year will be the first year he can be eligible to declare for the draft, and logic would say that a big physical back will want to get to the pros and get paid and not risk a needless injury at the collegiate level. He has done almost everything you can do at this level, rushing for almost 4,000 yards, with 35+ touchdowns, it would make sense for him to make the jump.
But if does make the jump where would he land, and how far down the draft board would he fall? AJ Dillon is a different type of running back than we see in the NFL now. He's shown that he can catch the ball, but had the opportunity to be a reliable pass catcher. He's huge at 240 pounds, but how many large backs out there, and how many are taken in the early rounds of the NFL Draft? And how many are successful?
If he does decide to go into the NFL Draft I would project the following backs to go before Dillon (if they do declare):
Jonathan Taylor Thomas (Wisconsin): Arguably the best back in the country, game changer.
D'Andre Swift (Georgia): Has that SEC speed that NFL teams swoon over.
JK Dobbins (Ohio State): Home run hitter, with elite speed.
Cam Akers (Florida State): Better speed than Dillon and better pass catcher.
Travis Etienne (Clemson): If he declares he could arguably be the best back in the draft class. Great vision, has performed against elite defenses. Total package.
Najee Harris (Alabama): Another big physical back who can catch the ball, also has that Alabama allure.
So Where Could Dillon Land?
At this point, given most likely at least six backs in front of him, AJ Dillon looks to most likely be a 4th or 5th rounder if he declares this year. There will certainly be teams out there that could use a power back like Dillon. I could see teams like the Raiders, Seahawks, 49ers, Bills, Seahawks, Dolphins and Texans giving him a chance. The worst thing that could happen is for Dillon to run into an Andre Williams type situation, where he lands on a team where the QB situation is a mess and they just lean on him too hard. A nice balanced offense would be the perfect situation for Dillon