Texas A&M Senior
Is able to bounce plays outside with a nice jump cut and can juke a defender on the edge. Is patient, waits for blocks to develop when moving laterally on the stretch play. Shows ability to set up defenders and make the cutback against overpursuit. Shows some ability to run behind his pads between the tackles and finish runs. Will keep his feet moving after contact and able to break arm tackles. Is able to make the move after the catch to make the first defender miss in the open field, and you like his shiftiness in space.
Doesn't have great footwork and he can be choppy when he's trying to change direction and make his cuts. Lacks ideal speed and not a guy that is always going to be the defense to the corner. Doesn't accelerate well. Can be too patient at times when it comes to hitting his hole and letting the play develop.
Gray was a guy that was a backup to the much better Christine Michael at Texas A&M, but due to injuries to Michael over the past few years, he's really been able to take advantage of his opportunities. He's got decent speed and power, but his vision and quickness are his best assets and he really shined at times as a big play threat in Texas A&M's zone blocking scheme. He also worked as a return specialist and is a capable option in the passing game.
2011 GAMES WATCHED:
(9/24) vs. Oklahoma St: 13 att., 35 yds, 2.7 YPC, 13 YAC, 0 TDs; 3 tgt., 3 rec., 9 yds, 12 YAC, 0 TDs
(10/1) vs. Arkansas: 17 att., 95 yds, 5.6 YPC, 30 YAC, 2 TDs; 1 tgt., 1 rec., 3 yds
2011: 11 GP/5 GS, 198 att., 1045 yds, 5.3 YPC, 12 TDs; 31 rec., 239 yds, 3 TDs; 6 KOR, 19.3 avg, 0 TDs
2010: 13/7-200-1133-5.7-12; 34-251-7.4-1; 17-24.8-0
2009: 12/9-159-757-4.8-5; 28-226-8.1-2; 27-23.8-1
2008: 12/0-75-363-4.8-1; 10-60-0; 49-23.9-1
- missed final 2 games of 2011 with shoulder injury, as well as Senior Bowl
Gray is a guy that has potential to develop at the next level. He's a very productive player despite the fact that his skillset never really pops on film. And in that regard he's sort of sneaky good. He's a player that works best in a zone-blocking scheme. And while he breaks quite a few runs at the college level, I'm not sure he has that sort of ability to really be that sort of game breaker at the pro level. He reminds me a bit of Ryan Grant, who is a guy that doesn't really wow you in any area, but is solid in most and has been a solid pro playing primarily behind a zone-blocking line in Green Bay. Gray isn't as big as Grant is, and thus probably is more of a complementary runner at the next level than a potential lead rusher. But he's a guy that can create a little bit, and if he fills out his frame a bit more, I could see him being a competent starter down the road. He'll never be a big-time back, but because he can contribute in the passing game and be a decent rusher he might be able to be a solid 15-carry back for a year or two. But that's probably a few years away, and by no means a sure bet. But I think he can definitely develop into a capable third down back on most teams that is capable reserve that you can give 8-10 touches per game and be happy with his production. As a special teams option on kickoff returns, his lack of ideal long speed probably only makes him a stopgap there, not a guy that really is much of a threat.
Gray can add depth in Atlanta, but he doesn't really add anything to the table that Jacquizz Rodgers already brings. Like Rodgers, he's a player that will fit best in a zone-blocking scheme. His value in Atlanta is really only if the Falcons were to really become more of a zone-heavy/pass-centric offense and was looking to use him and Rodgers in conjunction with one another similar to how the Saints use Darren Sproles and Pierre Thomas. In such a situation, Gray probably is the Pierre Thomas in such an equation, and as a guy that shares the load can be valuable. But he's probably the lesser between him and Rodgers because he's not quite as quick or powerful as Rodgers is. But he definitely can grow into a capable player that can split reps in a committee system here.
Gray is a solid depth option for most teams. But because he's probably more likely to be a depth guy than a potential starter for most teams, he's probably not worth more than a fourth round pick. And that is probably ideally for a zone-blocking team looking for a developmental third down back. There is upside to develop down the road with Gray, but he's more likely to be a great backup than a good starter.
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Scouting reports of the running backs and fullbacks in the 2012 Draft
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