Breaking down the top 2022 NFL Draft running back prospects (Clip)

Breaking down the top 2022 NFL Draft running back prospects (Clip)

NFL Draft Profile: Keaontay Ingram, Running Back, USC Trojans

NFL draft profile scouting report for USC running back, Keaontay Ingram
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#28
Pos: RB
Ht: 5113
Wt: 225
DOB: 10/26/99
Eligible: 2022
Carthage, TX
Carthage High School

Keaontay Ingram
USC Trojans


Pros:

Smith: Ingram plays with a low-pad level for a running back measuring six feet tall. Despite having long legs, he has surprising short-area quickness and contact balance thanks to the low center of gravity he plays with, as well as some active feet. Ingram has a patient approach as a runner and plays behind his pads with his eyes up, scanning for run lanes or oncoming defenders. He has the upper-body build to absorb shots without losing balance and will even deliver a blow from time to time. Ingram has no issue accelerating hard into holes, fearlessly cutting upfield into the traffic. He shows discipline not to bounce runs outside prematurely, although he can be a little quick to cut back. Once he gets into the open field, Ingram shows terrific burst with a second gear that can force defenders to change their pursuit angles quickly. He takes a balanced approach taking on incoming tacklers in the open field, choosing to lower his shoulder as often as he tries to make them miss. When Ingram attempts to avoid contact, he often uses a jump cut or head fake before planting and changing direction. He’s also pulled out a nifty spin move once or twice. Plays with great desire, often seeking to fall forward or rip free of a tackler’s grasp.

Cons:

Smith: While he does fall forward often, it’s typically more about desire than his lower-body power. Ingram will occasionally drive his feet after being wrapped up, but he doesn’t carry defenders or knock them backward at the point of attack. His legs appeared thicker during this past spring at USC, which will help in that regard. Ingram also has little experience being anything more than a check-down option in the passing game. In the rare case a cut was involved in the route he ran at Texas, he doesn’t set up defenders with the angle of his release, and he doesn’t sink his hips and accelerate out of the break. While reps would help him improve in this case, Ingram will likely never be a polished route-runner out of the backfield or split out wide. He’s built to be much better in pass protection, but there is a lot of work to be done there too. Ingram doesn’t play with good spatial awareness relative to his responsibility, whether it’s extending the edge of the pocket or stepping up to fill a void. He often gets too wide helping on the edge and opens up space for players to cut inside of him. Ingram also plays too high and lunges as opposed to sitting down in protection and absorbing the shot with a well-timed punch and suitable leverage. This may be something we see improve in USC’s offense as opposed to the scheme at Texas. Had a bit of a fumbling issue in 2020 but was carrying the ball high and tight by the season’s end. Ingram’s long speed may not offer up much in the way of big plays, as his 10-yard split is likely to be more impressive than his 40-yard time.

Summary:

Smith: Ingram is a top-heavy, long-limbed player with above-average height for a running back at six feet tall. He’s more passionate than powerful as a runner thanks to a slender lower half, and while Ingram does fall forward, he rarely breaks completely free of tacklers. He displayed a versatile running style at Texas, showing the patience, balance, and vision to maneuver in traffic in a gap scheme while also implementing a one-cut approach at times with the burst that will thrive in zone concepts. Ingram is still very raw in the passing game, but his fearless nature and bulky frame should help him settle in on coverage units while occupying a reserve role as a runner who brings a lot of energy to the offense.

Background:

A four-star recruit and All-American out of Carthage, Texas, Ingram finished second on the team with 708 yards and first among runners with more than 100 carries, averaging 5.0 yards a carry as a true freshman. He upped those totals to a team-leading 853 yards as a sophomore while averaging 5.9 yards a run. Still, a bit of a fumbling issue mixed with a hamstring injury opened the door for Bijan Robinson to plant his roots in the backfield, prompting a transfer to USC for Ingram. During his disappointing 2020 campaign, Ingram wasn’t a distraction despite seeing his role diminish. Following fumbles in back-to-back games, Ingram returned with a disciplined approach, carrying the ball high and tight for the remainder of the season. He also took a mature approach during his decision to transfer. He’s known as a high character guy in the locker room and takes his studies seriously. Ingram made the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll twice in his time at Texas while also being named to the Big-12’s Academic All-Conference Team. After majoring in physical culture and sport at Texas, he will pursue a degree in non-governmental organizations and social changes at USC. One of ten siblings, Ingram will be a fourth-year senior.


One-Liners

Smith: Ingram is still very raw in the passing game, but his fearless nature and bulky frame should help him settle in on coverage units while occupying a reserve role as a runner who brings a lot of energy to the offense.

Grades

Current Player Value/Potential Player Value

Smith: 6.4 / 7.6


#28
Pos: RB
Ht: 5113
Wt: 225
DOB: 10/26/99
Eligible: 2022
Carthage, TX
Carthage High School

Keaontay Ingram
USC Trojans


Pros:

Smith: Ingram plays with a low-pad level for a running back measuring six feet tall. Despite having long legs, he has surprising short-area quickness and contact balance thanks to the low center of gravity he plays with, as well as some active feet. Ingram has a patient approach as a runner and plays behind his pads with his eyes up, scanning for run lanes or oncoming defenders. He has the upper-body build to absorb shots without losing balance and will even deliver a blow from time to time. Ingram has no issue accelerating hard into holes, fearlessly cutting upfield into the traffic. He shows discipline not to bounce runs outside prematurely, although he can be a little quick to cut back. Once he gets into the open field, Ingram shows terrific burst with a second gear that can force defenders to change their pursuit angles quickly. He takes a balanced approach taking on incoming tacklers in the open field, choosing to lower his shoulder as often as he tries to make them miss. When Ingram attempts to avoid contact, he often uses a jump cut or head fake before planting and changing direction. He’s also pulled out a nifty spin move once or twice. Plays with great desire, often seeking to fall forward or rip free of a tackler’s grasp.

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