Top RBs at the 2024 NFL Combine: Can a Consensus RB1 Emerge From Indianapolis?

The 2024 NFL Draft RB class is wide open. Who could establish themselves as the top back with a strong performance at the 2024 NFL Combine?

When there is a lack of consensus with a position group entering the NFL Draft process, the NFL Combine provides the perfect platform for incoming prospects to separate themselves from their peers in an attempt to solidify their draft stock.

The running back position is certainly among the most undetermined from a prospect rankings perspective, with more than a handful of backs in the conversation for the first back to be selected when the draft rolls around in less than two months.

Here are some of the players to keep an eye on when the running backs take the field at the NFL Combine.

Top 2024 NFL Combine Running Backs

The RB testing numbers are generally subjective to which traits a scout values when analyzing incoming ball carriers entering the league.

If you are in the market for an early down thumper or short-yardage specialist, then a 40-yard dash time may not carry the same weight for that style of prospect compared to a third-down pass-catching specialist in the NFL.

The future group of NFL backs have the option to partake in testing events like the 40-yard dash, vertical jump, broad jump, bench press, 20-yard shuttle, 60-yard shuttle, and 3-cone drill.

After testing and measurements are completed, running backs will take to the field to showcase their talents in various drills, including change of direction, off-tackle reaction, blast read, and running a handful of routes tailored to the position — namely the flat, Texas, corner, wheel, and flair routes — to test their pass-catching prowess.

Braelon Allen, Wisconsin

Perhaps no back is more polarizing entering the NFL Combine this year than Wisconsin’s Braelon Allen, who possesses measurables that looked like they were created in a sports laboratory factory.

His size  — listed at 6’2” and 245 pounds in his junior year — combined with some legit long speed for a bigger back we saw during his collegiate days — clocking in at 20.1 MPH on a 96-yard TD run his sophomore year — could give him one of the most unique prospect profiles at the position entering the league at the young age of 20.

Things I would love to see from Allen at the combine that could elevate his stock significantly would be a time in the low 4.4-second range in the 40, a stellar performance in either the 3-cone or 20-yard shuttle, and him looking comfortable in the pass-catching drills.

Trey Benson, FSU

The Florida State Seminoles were loaded with big-play threats across the entire offensive unit in 2023, but no player was quite as electric as running back Trey Benson.

Many draft pundits are hoping to see his explosive playmaking ability confirmed with a fast performance at Lucas Oil Stadium. Still, he could also improve his stock with a solid outing in pass-catching drills.

Benson is one of the few backs with a true three-down skill set and home run-hitting ability in this class but didn’t have an overly expansive route arsenal at FSU. If he can show reliable hands, hip fluidity, and explosiveness out of his breaks while catching passes, he could help prove he is a potential impact player in the passing game for an NFL backfield.

Blake Corum, Michigan

Speaking of players who weren’t tasked with overly complex assignments as a pass catcher, Blake Corum enters the NFL Combine as arguably the best pure ball carrier in the entire group. His tape and production speak for themselves after excelling in a feature role for a College Football Playoff National Championship-winning team during his final year in college.

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In addition, his explosive runs dropped by a noteworthy margin from 2022 to 2023, which could bring into question top-end speed after suffering a torn meniscus toward the end of his junior season. An impressive time in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine would potentially give him the strongest RB1 case overall simply due to having the fewest weaknesses of any prospect entering the 2024 NFL Draft.

Running Backs Invited to 2024 NFL Combine

  • George Holani, Boise State
  • Dillon Johnson, Washington
  • Jawhar Jordan, Louisville
  • Dylan Laube, New Hampshire
  • Jase McClellan, Alabama
  • Kendall Milton, Georgia
  • Keilan Robinson, Texas
  • Cody Schrader, Missouri
  • Will Shipley, Clemson
  • Jaden Shirden, Monmouth
  • Tyrone Tracy Jr., Purdue
  • Kimani Vidal, Troy
  • Michael Wiley, Arizona
  • Miyan Williams, Ohio State

All the 2024 NFL Draft resources you need — the draft order, the top QBs, the Top 100 prospects, and the full 2024 Big Board — right at your fingertips at Pro Football Network!

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