LaMichael James

Draft Losers: San Francisco 49ers

When you’re as close to a Super Bowl berth as the San Francisco 49ers were in 2011, you need to add some impact players in the draft to push you over the top. Unfortunately, the 49ers failed to add a single starter, instead settling for developmental prospects who will do little to help in 2012.

A.J. Jenkins was a reach in the late 1st-round and will take time to develop. His speed may be an asset in certain situations, but he’ll be competing with veterans Randy Moss and Ted Ginn Jr. just to get on the field.

LaMichael James was another luxury pick who will have to fight just to get on the field. He may be nothing more than a return specialist early in his career, an area which was not a need in San Francisco.

Overall, this was a disappointing draft class for a team that had an opportunity to solidify a few holes in an effort to make another deep playoff run in 2012.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2012 NFL Draft, 49ers 5 Comments

All-Overrated “Team”

Here is my pre-Senior Bowl all-overrated “team.” It’s not exactly a full team because certain positions don’t have a truly overrated prospect… yet. Depending on the media’s reaction to the Senior Bowl and/or Combine, players could drop off the list, or earn their way onto the roster in the coming months.

QB Ryan Tannehill Texas A&M
Every year a quarterback or two see their stock inflated due to team needs. Tannehill is this year’s victim.
RB LaMichael James Oregon
James is an impressive athlete with speed to burn, but he isn’t an every-down back.
RB Chris Rainey Florida
Much like James, Rainey is heralded for his speed, but he will be limited to special teams duty in the NFL.
WR Alshon Jeffery South Carolina
There’s no denying Jeffery’s raw ability, but his inconsistency raises a big red flag.
WR Nick Toon Wisconsin
Toon was a productive college receiver who benefitted from Russell Wilson’s prescence in 2011. He’s a 3rd or 4th option in the NFL at best.
TE Coby Fleener Stanford
Fleener is my top rated tight end, but that’s exactly why he’s being overrated. He’s just the best of a mediocre class.
OT Jonathan Martin Stanford
Martin will be a fine pro, but not at left tackle. Anyone who falls for the hype will be moving him to the right side, or to guard, within three years.
OT Mike Adams Ohio State
Adams certainly looks the part, but he’s terribly soft and not especially quickon his feet.
DE Quinton Coples North Carolina
You can put together a highlight real that makes Coples look like a top-five pick… but you can’t find a single game where he shows it from start to finish.
DE Jack Crawford Penn State
Crawford never lived up to expectations at Penn State despite his impressive athleticism.
DT Alameda Ta’amu Washington
Ta’amu has the size to play nose tackle, which boosts his stock significantly, but he may not have the stamina to be a three-down lineman.
LB Zach Brown North Carolina
Brown is an athlete, but he’s undersized and will get pushed around by NFL linemen.
LB Bruce Irvin West Virginia
Irvin flashes elite athleticism at times, but he had to fight for playing time throughout his career due to inconsistent performances.
LB Vontaze Burfict Arizona State
Top-10 talent, undraftable character. Not worth the trouble.
CB Janoris Jenkins North Alabama
See above.
CB Alfonzo Dennard Nebraska
I have a hard time understanding where the 1st-round love for Dennard comes from. He’s a physical corner and his injury prone – a bad combo.
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2012 NFL Draft Comments Off

LaMichael James scouting report

LaMichael James RB Oregon #21
Ht: 5’9″Wt: 185
Elite speed and overall quickness. Exceptional change-of-direction ability. Always a threat to take it the distance. Consistently makes defenders miss; rarely brought down by one man once he’s in the open field. Willing to go between the tackles despite lack of size. Effective receiver out of the backfield; relatively good hands. Gives a decent effort when asked to block. Some experience returning punts.
Vastly undersized. Does not have the build to hold up as a full time starter at the next level. Doesn’t have the strength to shed tackles; once he’s wrapped, he’s down. Has a somewhat reckless running style; doesn’t have great body control once he’s moving at full speed. Skill set doesn’t match what NFL teams want from their feature back. Limited experience on special teams; only 16 career kick/punt returns. Arrested on domestic violence charge in 2010. Missed two games with dislocated right elbow in 2011. Injured left elbow in 2011 regular-season finale. Suffered knee injury in 2010.
James was an explosive collegiate running back, but he will likely be relegated to the role of specialist in the NFL. There’s always room on an NFL roster for a player who can take it to the house on any given play, but his lack of size and strength limits the situations in which he can useful in an NFL offense. ¬†The best recent comparison for James may be Jerome Harrison, who lit up the Pac-10 in 2005 with the Washington State Cougars, but has only been marginally effective in the NFL. In the right offense he can still be a weapon, but will never be the go-to guy.
2011 vs LSU
2011 vs Arizona 


Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2012 Comments Off