Can’t stop, won’t stop, that’s become the Denver Broncos adage in the 2017 NFL Draft’s third day when it comes to adding elusive speedsters on offense. Coastal Carolina running back De’Angelo Henderson is the newest addition to the group and may be the most intriguing of them all. He’s truly talented.
Henderson is coming off of three consecutive thousand-yard rushing seasons at Coastal Carolina, having finished his career with 64 total touchdowns in 50 games. At 5-foot-7 and 208 pounds, he’s a shorter prospect but has plenty of power to be a running back in the NFL.
Here’s what we saw on tape.
- Short and stocky Henderson is really hard to bring down to the ground as he runs with deceiving power and a low center of gravity.
- He’s a dynamo in the open field with outstanding quickness and jump-cut ability that he uses to constantly embarrass defenders in space.
- His running style is contagious. His combination of power and quickness make him a terror once he has an inch of space.
- He rarely goes down on first contact and is almost always able to break the first tackle or wiggle his way out of it to create extra yardage.
- Runs low to the ground and seeks out contact. He’s hard to locate due to his smaller size but packs a punch.
- Henderson’s a creative runner in the open field, has lots of moves he uses to leave defenders in the dust.
- Has great long speed, can break big runs consistently. Good vision is able to stick his foot and go once he finds an opening.
- Pretty good receiver with 97 career receptions. Uses his elusiveness and quickness at the snap to separate at the top of a route and has nice hands.
- Henderson is small something that will limit his ability as a pass blocker in the backfield. As a third down RB, he has everything you need, but he does need to improve in this aspect.
- Henderson sometimes dances around too much in the backfield instead of sticking to the play and running through his lane.
- He’ll have to be more selective in seeking out contact at the next level as sometimes he’ll be better off running plays out of bounds. He’s at risk of taking a pounding with his running style.
- Too often Henderson pushes runs outside. He has the power to run inside more often collegially. Will have to show he can run inside with consistency at the NFL level.
- Doesn’t have special teams returning experience, likely will have to play in some special teams role as a pro.
- Missed three games because of a shoulder injury his final season. This could have led to him dropping in the draft.
How he fits
In a very loaded running back class, Henderson is one of the more intriguing talents in the group. He’ll be underrated due to his size, but at 208 pounds he’s a load to bring down, especially when he’s able to hide behind his line with his short frame.
He’s an explosive playmaker who can make big plays when put out in space. He’ll also be an intriguing contributor as a receiver.
After having traded away Kapri Bibbs, the Broncos needed a speed back in their backfield, and they got one with Henderson. The depth at the position has also been tested the last few seasons when C.J. Anderson’s gone down, and Henderson provides some insurance.
Henderson is fairly complete, making him a ready-made prospect who adds exactly what the Broncos ground game was lacking.