Our rookie scouting reports combine film and analytics to provide the best possible predictions for player performance. With the 2023 NFL Draft less than a month away, let’s take a look at the scouting report for Northwestern running back Evan Hull.
Evan Hull NFL Draft Profile
- Position: Running Back
- School: Northwestern
- Year: Senior
Hull was a three-star recruit out of Maple Grove High School in Osseo, Minnesota. After signing his letter of intent to play college football for Northwestern, Hull visited several other programs. In the end, he honored his commitment and enrolled at Northwestern.
As a freshman, Hull was limited to just four game appearances, preserving his redshirt status. His second season was mired by the complication brought on by COVID. Despite appearing in seven games, Hull was less involved than he was as a freshman, carrying the ball just 25 times for 209 yards and two touchdowns.
In 2021, Hull was finally handed the keys to the team’s backfield. He ran it 196 times for 1,009 yards and seven touchdowns, while also adding 33 receptions for 264 yards and two additional scores.
As a senior, Hull’s efficiency on the ground regressed a bit. His yards per carry dropped from 5.1 to 4.1, but he really showed out as a receiver, catching 55 passes for 546 yards and two touchdowns.
Hull played 35 games at Northwestern. Overall, he finished his college career with 488 carries for 2,417 yards and 18 touchdowns on the ground, and 94 receptions for 851 yards and four touchdowns through the air.
Tony Pauline’s Scouting Report for Evan Hull
Strengths: Hard-charging ball carrier who is also super-productive as a pass catcher out of the backfield. Patient, displays terrific vision, and consistently finds the running lanes. Will pick and choose his spots, has quick feet, and bounces around piles or defenders. Displays a burst through the hole, quickly cuts back against the grain, and doesn’t lose momentum changing direction.
Runs hard on the inside, squeezes through the small openings of the defense, and falls forward when tackled. Agile with the ability to turn the corner. Solid pass catcher who immediately gets into routes then uses his frame to shield away defenders. Adjusts to the errant throw, extends his hands, and makes the reception away from his frame.
Weaknesses: Not a sturdy back who picks up much yardage off initial contact despite his size. Brought down at the point by a single defender. Has speed deficiencies.
Overall: Hull was an all-purpose player for Northwestern the past two seasons as both a ball carrier and pass catcher. He was super-productive and projects well at the next level as a third back on the depth chart who can be used in a variety of roles.
Evan Hull Combine Measurements and Results
- Height: 5’10 1/8″
- Weight: 209 pounds
- Arm Length: 30 5/8″
- Hand Size: 9 1/4″
- Bench Press: 21
- 40-Yard Dash: 4.47
Evan Hull’s 2023 NFL Outlook
On Tony Pauline’s Big Board, Hull ranked 200th overall and was drafted in the fifth round by the Indianapolis Colts. With a 3.36 grade, he was Pauline’s RB20 in this class.
Given the shift in the NFL away from three-down backs, there’s a path for Hull to play meaningful NFL snaps, even as a Day 3 pick. The Colts’ ongoing drama with star rusher Jonathan Taylor, who is on the Physically Unable to Perform list, further opens the door for Hull to emerge. Though the Colts say they won’t trade Taylor, his days with the Colts seem to be headed toward an end.
Last year, we saw Dameon Pierce, Tyler Allgeier, and Isiah Pacheco earn lead-back roles. In the 2021 draft class, Rhamondre Stevenson, Kenneth Gainwell, and Elijah Mitchell emerged. While the preceding classes don’t have anyone of note, the past two years show Hull can carve out at least a nice role.
Where Hull has a leg up on past Day 3 picks are with his receiving acumen. Hull was a prolific pass catcher at Northwestern, commanding a 17.3% target share in his final season. His yards per route run ranked third among all running backs.
With Taylor sidelined, Hull has a good opportunity to beat out veterans Zack Moss and Kenyan Drake for playing time. Neither is especially good at this point in their careers but there’s always room for a solid pass-blocking back to earn playing time. If Hull can prove to be a quality pass blocker, he will play quite a bit this fall.
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