Would Memphis running back Darrell Henderson be a fit with the Chicago Bears?
As the Chicago Bears head into the offseason running back will certainly be a position that they need to watch. After missing out on Kareem Hunt, the Bears will likely look to upgrade from Jordan Howard via the draft.
Darrell Henderson is an interesting player who has outshot expectations from high school to his career at Memphis. Henderson was the Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year but was a bit under-recruited before being named a first-team All-American as a Senior at Memphis. The accomplished running back enters the NFL draft with a chance to make waves. What are his strengths and weaknesses and should the Bears take a shot?
Big play ability. Darrell Henderson brings strong lateral quickness, and balance. The combination gives him a great juke move that maintains speed upfield while he cuts. Henderson does a strong job of setting up blocks and using a quick cut to burst into the second level. He is a bit shorter and can almost be lost in the backfield where he is one cut and go.
Patience and understanding in the second level with quick cuts can lead to big plays in an instant.
While he was not used often, he showed well with the ball in his hands as a pass catcher and also showed burst and big-play ability in the screen game.
His weight will be a big question as he heads into the combine, as he is shorter, but not quite compact enough to consistently bang between the tackles. He will have to put on NFL muscle but does not have elite speed either. Questions will emerge in pass protection.
While he is elite in eluding tackles, he can struggle in breaking tackles. Henderson can find power when he gets going but lacks tackle-breaking strength in short areas.
The vision. lateral cuts and big-play ability are what a Matt Nagy running back looks like. The question would be whether or not he could fall to the Chicago Bears pick. Henderson is a senior and while the pass protection questions will linger, Kareem Hunt had questions in pass protection as well, but Nagy took a chance on him in the draft.
Like Hunt, Henderson came from school and like Hunt, he averaged over 8 yards per carry. Could Darrell Henderson be Matt Nagy’s version of Kareem Hunt for the Chicago Bears?