Ben Melana – Running back
Melana can be a tough guy to evaluate because he isn’t a bell cow type running back. He plays in a rotation. With the offense that Texas A&M runs, the RBs don’t get a large number of carries. Still, Melana is an effective back and a solid prospect.
He doesn’t have great size at 5’9" - 195 but he has a solid build and plays with strength. He has very good initial quickness and gets to the hole quickly. He runs with lean and has power. He shows patience and instincts as a runner and has the ability to make a quick cut in the hole. He is a good, cutback type runner. While he doesn’t seem to have top breakaway speed, he has a burst when he finds a seam. He is effective both inside and outside and because of his lean and power, he consistently gets yards after contact. He showed tough inside running skills in the Alabama game and was effective in short yardage.
Melana is a willing and consistent pass blocker who will face up a pass rusher. On the game’s opening play he showed his run block ability, taking out a linebacker. He is used in the passing game and displays good hands. He is used mostly on short routes and check downs and will line up split out at times. He is an effective route runner.
I don’t see Melana as a high pick but he can be an excellent mid round pick who should be a good pro. He has the tools needed to be effective at the next level.