JK Dobbins Film Review
J.K. Dobbins did not participate in drills at the NFL Combine and that has raised concerns about his athletic measurables. But that didn't stop me from grinding tape.
And let me tell you, he has a game that is translatable to the NFL. After rushing for over 2,000 yards in 2019, he has cemented himself as one of the top RBs coming into this year’s draft.
The most important part of Dobbins' game, is the single step cut, and it can immediately translate to success in the correct NFL system. This is the exact move that awarded Lamar Jackson the nickname “Juke”. He is a master of the “plant and go” and the most impressive aspect is he immediately accelerates forward after. While he does not have a dynamic lateral skillset, he does have the ability to get to the 2nd level quicker than most because he can accelerate quickly on single plants.
Not all the time, yet… But he quickly diagnoses a lane and gets downhill. He is well above average at recognizing the speed and angles of defenders and adjusting his own speed and angle accordingly. This is great at the collegiate level but NFL players tend to be a bit faster than college kids. Dobbins reacts fast during unexpected encounters with defenders. He is one of the best short-area movers in the class. Dobbins shows unique skills that allow him to win in-gap, and at the line of scrimmage.
3 down skillset
J.K. is a joke when it comes to receiving the ball and running routes out of the backfield. Sike, I’m jk. He is a very versatile receiver who can make plays from the backfield, and on the line of scrimmage. And he has the juice to take it to the house once he catches it. He was used in the slot on occasions and this is something NFL offensive coordinators drool over. He does need work in the pass blocking area. While I did see the “want to” in him as he scanned for defenders, his ability to quickly find where the blitz is coming from, was not the most impressive. But i'm sure, no matter his landing spot, he will have a more than capable RB coach to get him up to speed.
J.K. Dobbins has enough speed to not run at full speed, then run at full speed when he needs to. The deception factor he plays is great in the open field and it's one reason why he will be breaking off long runs at the next level. He uses this speed variance to perfection as he accelerates after defenders take a bad angle. I noticed this on several occasions in the open field.
I have already mentioned, pass blocking isn't his strongest skill. But he shows the willingness to do it, and that gives me optimism. He will get better. He is above average at this point in his career and it's not necessarily a concern, but more of an observation. Something that i am slightly concerned with is the fact the Ohio St. offense seemed to be a key reason for some of his success. The threat of a read option, pretty sound offensive line, and zone blocking scheme constantly gave Dobbins a lot of room to work with. Going to a pro style offense could mean for an initial drop off in rushing production.
J.K. Dobbins is a future 3 down NFL running back but I don't see him stepping right into a full time role without the right landing spot.He is as smooth of a receiver as he is a runner.