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SI All-American Candidate Dylan Merrell Highlights and Evaluation

Dylan Merrell is a running back prospect from Alpharetta High School in Alpharetta, Ga. Merrell is an SI All-American candidate.

Prospect: Dylan Merrell
Status: SI All-American Candidate
Vitals: 6-foot-1, 179 pounds
Position: Running Back
School: Alpharetta (Ga.) Gadsden County High School
Committed to: Duke
Projected Position: Running Back

Frame: Lean with solid length and wide shoulders. Good definition with a flat chest and straight lower base. 

Athleticism: Ran a 4.53 short-shuttle and 4.65 40-yard dash in Spring 2019. Also posted a vertical jump of nearly 32-inches. A bounce-style runner with good lateral quickness and agility to slide, chop and get vertical. Decreases pad level well to obtain solid quickness out of his cuts. Average contact balance when challenged. Displays above-average long speed to perform chunk runs.

Instincts: Prefers to work on edges/perimeter. Appears to possess solid run instincts and shows to have good peripheral vision to see outside creases. Solid decision-maker on second-level with fairly quick mental processing. 

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Polish: Currently stations often in shotgun alignments and executes mostly man and gap-scheme run concepts. Holes are defined when asked to punch inside. Screen action is his main participation in the passing game. Possesses a lean frame that needs to add mass and strength in order to improve contact balance. He also possesses an average open-field elusiveness. Will need to expand offering to contribute in the passing game. 

Bottom Line: Merrell is an interesting prospect, as he has the frame of a change of pace back, but that isn’t necessarily his whole game. Though he’s not the most powerful runner, Merrell could fit better in an offense that features more man-scheme and gap-scheme run concepts than zone-blocking concepts.