STRENGTHS - Jefferson has a well-built frame for the RB position. He is a willing and competent pass blocker, as he is quick to diagnose and attack blitzers at the LOS and consistently utilizes strong base and leverage to sustain blocks at the POA. He looks comfortable catching the ball away from his frame and does a solid job of setting up blockers in space after the catch. He showed off his toughness during his game against Fresno State, as he played well while fighting through an ankle injury.
WEAKNESSES - Jefferson runs too upright through the LOS, which makes him an easy target for big hits and leaves him susceptible to fumbles. It also causes him to struggle changing directions fluidly, as he displays a limited amount of short area quickness and agility at the LOS. He lacks the burst to get through tight spaces before they close, and also does not possess the speed needed to take the edge or separate from defenders once out in space. He lacks the power and aggressiveness to be an effective runner inside, and is too easily taken down by ankle tackles.
SUMMARY - Stefphon Jefferson decided to leave college and enter the NFL draft early after a statistically productive 2012 campaign at Nevada, but based on film study he clearly should have gone back to school to refine his game. He isn't an explosive athlete through the LOS and struggles to get through holes before they're sealed, and his upright running style hurts his ability to change directions and break tackles. Without a real NFL skill set as a runner his only real change to make it at the next level is as a 3rd down back, but fortunately for Jefferson, this is where he's at his best. He is smart and aggressive as a blocker, and does an excellent job of beating the free man to the POA and holding his ground with base, leverage and a strong punch. As a receiver out of the backfield he demonstrates solid hands and is an aggressive runner after the catch that patiently sets up 2nd level blockers before running to daylight. If he can learn to run with more forward lean and prove to be of value on special teams he will have a shot to make a roster as a 3rd down back, but Jefferson's athletic limitations will make it difficult for him to make it out of an NFL training camp.