The 2017 NFL Draft begins Thursday, April 27 on ESPN and the NFL Network. As draft day approaches, numerous prognosticators are weighing in on who is going where, and when. Trying to guess where running backs like LSU’s Leonard Fournette will land is nearly impossible. Many predict he’ll be among the top ten players drafted.
Fournette, who enters the draft as a Junior, came into the college game with big expectations as a two-time High School All-American. He committed to LSU in Baton Rouge not far from his hometown of New Orleans. After managing over 1,000 yards his freshman year in 2014, he had a breakout sophomore season, setting single-season school records with 1,953 rushing yards and 22 rushing touchdowns. His 162.8 average yards per game was the best in college football that season. Injuries plagued Fournette’s junior season in 2016 to the point where he even passed on playing in the Citrus Bowl, opting instead to enter the NFL draft and focusing on his workouts.
As for the NFL Draft, some experts predict Florida State’s Dalvin Cook to be selected ahead of Fournette at the running back position. Still, drafting a back remains a gamble. This, regardless of the production of running backs like Ezekiel Elliott, who had a brilliant rookie season in Dallas as the fourth overall pick, or Todd Gurley who went at No. 10 to the Rams in 2015. It comes down to how badly a team needs a running back and if they’re willing to risk a high pick to take one.
Full Name: Leonard Fournette III
Born: Jan. 18, 1995
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana
Height/Weight: 6 foot 1 inch/235 pounds
Team/College: Louisiana State University (LSU), 2014–16
Position: Running Back
Honors and Achievements: Consensus All-American, 2015; USA Today High School All-American, 2012, 2013