Fullbacks; Football's Forgotten Position

Most professional clubs have de-emphasizing the use of the classic fullback in today's modern offenses, often utilizing them for as little as 15% of the offensive plays during the course of a game and or season.

I believe up to five senior fullbacks have a legitimate chance of being drafted on the Sunday portion of this year's draft, but in reality, I did not see a single one that truly excited me with his play during the entire 2008 season. In recent years, I've had the opportunity to scout a number of outstanding fullbacks including Daryl Johnston (Syracuse and the Dallas Cowboys) and Mike Alstott, (Purdue and Tampa Bay Buccaneers), but the late Craig Haywood was in my opinion the perfect fullback. The 5' 11" 280 something Heywood, or as he was affectionately known to his teammates, friends and fans as "Ironhead," was the near perfect fullback. He had the run skills of a halfback, the hands of a wideout (often lining up at X, Z and slot receiver in the Saints "kings" and "queens" sets), and most importantly he was a devastating lead blocker and pass protector. There are a number of fullbacks in this year's draft, who have shown toughness, some can catch, some can block and maybe some can run the football (I certainly didn't see it), but I've got to tell you gang, there are no Johnston's or Alstott's and certainly nobody in this particular group is even close to Craig Haywood. For the record, I personally wouldn't draft any fullback from this grouping, but I believe a number of them will in fact be drafted, but none are likely to make any more than a token contribution to their respective clubs.

Fullbacks

RK Name School HT WT 40 GR
1 Fiammetta, Tony Syracuse 6001v 245v 4.63v 1.56
2 Southerland, Brannan Georgia 6000v 245v 4.72v 1.60
3 Cook, Jason Mississippi 5112v 244v 4.74v 1.69
4 Ta'ufo'ou, Will California 5107v 243v 4.96v 1.77
5 Johnson, Quinn LSU 6006v 246v 4.84v 1.78

Free Agents

RK Name School HT WT 40 GR
Bolen, Brock Louisville 5115v 234v 4.77v 1.90
Lane, Jorvorskie Texas A&M 5116v 297v 5.06v 1.90
Mailei, Marcus Weber St 5116v 248v 4.88v 1.90

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