Tennessee senior running back Montario Hardesty is coming off a career season in which he rushed for 1,345 yards and 13 touchdowns after a largely subdued five-year stint with the Volunteers. He offers a unique combination of size, speed and versatility coming into the 2010 NFL Draft.
- Deceptive speed: ran 4.49 seconds in the 40-yard dash
- Versatile: quality receiver out of the backfield
- Size: well-built at 5-foot-11 3/4, 225 pounds
- Capable of beating linebackers to the edge
- Good vision to find cutback lanes
- Breaks tackles well
- Solid, willing blocker - not going to "wow" anyone but gives a good effort
- Two-time team captain, considered of high character - great teammate
- Agility and balance - nasty spin move and shows good effort to bounce off would-be tackles
- Ball security
- Understands complex routes and can be flexed out wide
- Runs a bit tall
- One-year wonder?
- Not particularly elusive
- Average straight-line speed - not a home run threat
Expected draft placement
All of the knocks against Hardesty are minor. More or less, these so-called weaknesses are just ways of describing the type of player he isn't, and that's not a bad thing. If a team is looking for a midround value - perhaps a steal - Hardesty is fresh with only one year of extensive play despite being a five-year back. Hardesty is one of our favorite "sleeper" backs in the draft. He has the tools to be a full-time starter in the NFL, and in the right situation, he could have a starring role for many years.
Hardesty will likely be drafted in the late second round or by the end of the third.
About Cory J. Bonini
Cory is KFFL's General Manager. In late 2002, he joined the KFFL staff as a research analyst and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1996. A member of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, as well as Fantasy Sports Writers Association, Bonini has been featured in print, on radio and on scores of websites. Bonini co-hosted Big Lead Sports on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio from 2011 to 2012.
Bonini was recognized with the 2010 Best Article in Print Award from the FSWA and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. In '11, he finished first overall in the FSWA NFL experts challenge that featured 60 of the industry's best competitors.
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