April 28, 2007

Ohio State RB Antonio Pittman

Round Four - Pick 107
Ohio State RB Antonio Pittman
5'11 - 207 - 4.40 - 21 years old

Another early entrant into the draft, Pittman came as the result of a trade up in the early fourth round. We thought they were going after Pittman's teammate, QB Troy Smith. Pittman likely becomes the third runningback behind McAllister and Bush, given his fourth round draft status. Pittman is good value and drew third round ratings from many scouts.

Pittman is a smaller back who plays like a power back, running with some elusiveness but more often using his well-chiseled frame as a plow. Runs a little high, especially outside. Ran a 4.40 at the combine, but he doesn't play that fast. Also ran a speedy 6.84 three cone agility drill. Also had a 35.5" vertical and 16 presses of 225 pounds.

The kind of patient, balanced runner that becomes a star in Denver. Didn't mind being third fiddle on an offense behind Smith and WR Ted Ginn.

He is also experienced as a safety valve receiver. Must improve his pass protection abilities if he is ever to get on the field. Improved in Ohio State's program but needs to take his game, and his devotion to a new level. Another Akron native, like Andy Alleman, and was an All-Big Ten runningback. Had 1331 and 1233 rushing yards in the past two years in a big-time program.

Not the highest-effort player you will find, that should change with the Saints' college-style teaching coaching staff. Knicked up every year, including a hamstring injury that limited his preseason in 2006 and a lingering turf toe injury through his senior year of high school in 2003. Still, he played very tough and was durable enough to be one of the more successful runningbacks in school history.

Other options at 107: Utah DT Paul Soliai, South Florida LB Stephen Nicholas, Cincinnati CB John Bowie, Penn State LB Tim Shaw, East Carolina WR Aundrae Allison, Delaware TE Ben Patrick, Ohio State QB Troy Smith.

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