Carlos Hyde – Ohio State
Hyde is a fourth-year senior from Naples, Florida. He has been used in a rotation the last three seasons and while he may not start the game, he always handles the bulk of the carries. This year, Hyde missed the first three games of the season after being suspended for an off-field issue. Despite missing those three contests, however, Hyde was still able to rush for over 1,500 yards, averaging 7.3 yards per carry, with 15 touchdowns. He also had 16 pass receptions.
Hyde has excellent size for an NFL running back. He is listed as being 6000 – 235. He has quickness and very good balance, but I wouldn’t call him a burner, as Hyde should run in the 4.58 – 4.60 range. Ohio State plays in a spread offense with the running back lined up either as a “pistol” or next to the quarterback. When in the pistol, Hyde shows good initial quickness with a good burst to the hole. When lined up next to the quarterback, the running game is slower to develop, as the back usually takes a lateral step before he moves forward. Personally, I don’t like that style, as the runner does not have a lot of momentum when he gets to the line of scrimmage.
When in the pistol, Hyde has good quickness to the hole and is patient enough to allow his blocks to set up, which permits for the OSU running back to make a cut in the hole and sprint to daylight. Hyde runs low and with power. He is not an overly elusive guy, but he can make a quick cut. He keeps his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage and he attacks tacklers. Hyde has the strength and power to move the pile and gets yards after contact. He’s not a speedster, but Hyde has some long runs on his tape. However, that’s mainly because the holes are there. Still, he runs with good instincts. He is best as a between-the-tackles inside runner, but he does have a burst to turn the corner. Once in the open field, Hyde has demonstrated that he can make one defender miss, but usually not more than that.
In the pass game, Hyde is reliable as a receiver. He is generally utilized on short routes or as a check-down receiver. He has good hands and gets up field quickly after the catch. As a pass blocker, he is willing, but not consistently effective (see Big 10 Championship game). He has to learn to keep better position and use his hands with more effectiveness.
Overall, Hyde has the talent to be a starter in the NFL, but he has some limitations. He would be best utilized in a rotation with a complementary back. His style is similar to Green Bay’s Eddie Lacy, but Hyde is not as violent a runner. He may go in the first round, but I see Hyde more as a solid second round selection.