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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Ray Davis (RB – Kentucky)

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Ray Davis (RB – Kentucky)

FantasyPros will be taking a look at early NFL Draft scouting reports before the Combine in March. Here’s a look at Kentucky running back Ray Davis.

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Ray Davis

Ray Davis (RB – Kentucky)

5’10” – 216 lbs.

Background:

Spent the first two seasons of his collegiate career at Temple, where he immediately stepped into a major role, led the team in carries and finished with a 193-936-8 (4.8) line with 15-181-2 receiving. The team went with a committee-based approach after that, and his output dipped to 78-308-1 (3.9) before he transferred to Vanderbilt. Played somewhat sparingly in 2021 (44-211-1, 4.8), but took over as the team’s lead back the following year and finished with 232-1,042-5 (4.5) and another 29-169-3 receiving. Transferred yet again to Kentucky for this past season, dominating the team’s workload at the position and putting up 186-1,066-13 (5.7) rushing and 29-317-7 receiving as of the time of writing.

Positives:

Has been highly productive in three of his five seasons, including the past two, which both came at the SEC level. Built like a pro power back, with a low center of gravity and thick frame. Runs with good knee-bend. Patient runner with the type of vision you might expect given his experience; recognizes cutback lanes effectively. Has relatively sharp cuts and shows some elusiveness when weaving through the defense. Clean footwork and lateral quickness. Bounces off of arm tackles easily, with impressive contact balance. Gets low and shows good leg drive to finish his runs by grinding out an extra yard or two. Frame and style make him an effective goal line back. Aside from 2020, ball security has been excellent, with just six career fumbles. Has taken just under 350 career snaps in pass protection. Effective receiver who became more of a focal point this year, with the team scheming him looks; very difficult for smaller defensive backs to bring down. Offers a pretty reliable pair of hands.

Negatives:

Spent five years in school and will turn 25 in November. Has over 800 college touches to his name. Overall speed and burst are closer to adequate; will probably be more of a chunk runner in the league, and could struggle to consistently win the edge. Despite his extensive experience in pass pro, results in recent years have been somewhat inconsistent. Ran some wheel routes out of the backfield, but was rarely moved around into the slot or out wide.

Summary:

One of the most polished, pro-ready backs in the class, he has done it all at the college level, and should be able to step right into a running back rotation, or even potentially function as a feature back, given his frame, vision, strength, and passing-down experience. Age, tread, and the lack of elite speed and explosiveness may cause him to slip into the mid-rounds, but I’m relatively higher on him, and believe he could ultimately outperform some of the more heralded backs in the class.

Projection: Round 4

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