Derrick Locke

Falcons interested in running backs in draft

The Atlanta Falcons are obviously set at running back for 2011 with Michael Turner. However, that hasn’t stopped them from doing their homework on some running backs in this year’s draft class.

It appears as though the Falcons are looking to add a new dimension to their offense in the form of a home-run hitter to compliment the more physical Turner.

Hunter could make an immediate impact

The Falcons have met with (or are scheduled to meet with) Kendall Hunter, Mario Fanin, DuJuan Harris, Derrick Locke and Da’Rel Scott. All five have been clocked at 4.45 or faster in the 40 this offseason.

Despite the fact that running back is well down on the Falcons list of needs, don’t be shocked if they address the position fairly early in the draft. Coming off a 13-3 season, the Falcons are one of a handful of teams with enough in place for 2011 that they can afford an early luxury pick.

A player such as Kendall Hunter, who could be an option in the 2nd round, could immediately become a dangerous weapon on offense and change the way defenses game plan for the Falcons.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Falcons 2 Comments

Patriots looking to add speed on offense

Pre-draft workouts mean different things for different teams, but one team that isn’t afraid to tip their hand is the Patriots. Their draft visits are (surprisingly) often made public, and they often draft off the list of player’s they’ve visited with.

Among the players who worked out for and were lated drafted by the Patriots are¬†Patrick Chung, Darius Butler, Tyrone McKenzie, Brandon Tate, Julian Edeman, Aaron Hernandez, Devin McCourty and Rob Gronkowski. And that’s from the past two drafts alone.

Kendall Hunter could be a 2nd-round option for the Patriots

So far this year I’ve found reports of 21 players that are visiting the Patriots, and there’s one common thread linking most of them: speed.

Among the speedsters that Patriots have shown an interest in are five running backs – ¬†Ryan Williams, Derrick Locke, Kendall Hunter, Jordan Todman and Da’Rel Scott (who had the fast 40 time among running backs at the combine).

The Patriots have also shown an interest in some of this year’s faster receivers, including Torrey Smith, Jeremy Kerley, Cecil Shorts and Randall Cobb. They’ve also visited with Virgil Green, arguably the most athletic tight end in this year’s class.

With such a long list it’s tough to say who the Patriots are targeting at this point, but it’s clear that they’re putting a priority on adding athletes on offense. With four picks in the first two rounds, it’s safe to assume that Belichick will bring aboard at least one more weapon for Tom Brady.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Patriots Comments Off

Derrick Locke scouting report

Derrick Locke RB Kentucky
Ht: 5’9″

Wt: 190

Strengths:
Explosive runner who is a threat to score whenever the ball is in his hands. Has a great burst and gets up to full speed quickly. Small and shifty; tough player to contain once he’s in the open field. Dangerous receiver out of the backfield; a difficult assignment for linebackers because of his speed and explosiveness. Experienced on kick returns.
Weaknesses:
Serious injury concerns. Suffered torn MCL and ACL in knee in 2008. Missed time with shoulder and elbow injuries in 2010. Suffered a broken arm in 2010. Undersized; doesn’t have the ability to be a feature back. Not much of a blocker.
Comments:
Due to his size and injury history Locke probably isn’t the next Chris Johnson, but his explosive running style reminds me of the Titans running back. He’s the type of player that can impact a play just by being on the field, because the defense has to be aware of him at all times. He could be a valuable piece of the puzzle for a team looking to add a new dimension to their running game.
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2011 Comments Off