Former FSU Football Star Trey Benson Projected To Have No. 1 Rookie Season Among RBs

Moving on to the next level, Benson could lead the charge for the Arizona Cardinals.
May 10, 2024; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back Trey Benson (33) during rookie minicamp at the teams Tempe Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
May 10, 2024; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back Trey Benson (33) during rookie minicamp at the teams Tempe Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Florida State is no stranger to star running backs, especially in the Mike Norvell era. Players Jashaun Corbin, Lawrance Toafili, Treshaun Ward, and now Arizona Cardinal Trey Benson have all benefited under the tutelage of Norvell and running backs coach David Johnson to help prep them for the next level.

Benson, the most recent running back to make it to the NFL, was drafted in the third round of the 2024 NFL Draft after a monstrous two-year stint with the Seminoles. Chris Trapasso of CBS Sports recently released his list predicting the most productive rookies heading into this season and Benson topped the chart.

If you're asking me, Benson was criminally underrated during the pre-draft process, and my guess as to why -- he wasn't ever the clear-cut workhorse back at Florida State, which, should've been a clear-cut plus on his draft profile. Benson was never the highly-hyped, 250-plus carry wonder like, say, Breece Hall at Iowa State a few years ago. But of course, his lower-than-normal mileage is a positive as he enters the NFL.

What cannot be debated about Benson -- his elusiveness. In his final 300 collegiate carries, across those two seasons with the Seminoles, the pre-transfer Oregon Duck forced 124 missed tackles, which equates to a seismic 41.3% forced missed tackle rate. Using Hall as a reference again, he forced 139 missed tackles on his final 531 totes in the Big 12. Plus, Benson has feature-back size at 6-foot and 214 pounds and home-run hitting 4.39 speed.

He joins a Cardinals backfield led by fellow criminally underrated runner James Conner, and not much else. For as good as Conner was in Arizona a season ago -- over 1,000 yards at 5.0 yards per pop -- he is now 29 with 1,125 NFL carries to his name. Benson is a freakishly balanced, reasonably powerful, and deceptively fast, upright runner who'll be the most productive rookie ball carrier in 2024.

Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports

READ MORE: Two Former FSU Football Stars Named to 2024 NFL All-Rookie Instant Impact Team

Benson was first FSU player to achieve both an 80-yard touchdown catch and an 80-yard touchdown rush, he tied the program record with three 80-yard touchdowns. He had three games with at least three rushing touchdowns, ranking third in program history, and became the sixth player in FSU history to score at least nine rushing touchdowns in multiple seasons.

The 6'0'', 216-pound bruiser rushed for 900 plus yards in both seasons at Florida State amassing 22 touchdowns on the ground and another 371 yards in the air with a score in 2023.

Watch for Benson when the Cardinals take on the New Orleans Saints on August 10 at 8:00 p.m. as the NFL preseason kicks off.

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Tommy Mire


Tommy Mire joined NoleGameday in 2023 as a writer and editor. He initially worked as lead voice at SBNation's Tomahawk Nation and contributes to football, NFL and recruiting coverage. Connect with Tommy on Twitter at @TommyM3III