Devine Ozigbo: Fantasy Scouting Report
The 2019 NFL Draft has running backs of all shapes, sizes, and production levels. In this draft, there may not be a better size adjusted athlete than Devine Ozigbo. In fact, in a recent interview with Devin Ozigbo, by Justin Melo, he stated: “If I had to compare myself to a running back, however, I think I run like Arian Foster.” Ozigbo went on to lament about Foster’s ability to string together moves as a bigger running back. In this report, I will be going over Devin Ozigbo.
Devine Ozigbo: Arian Foster 2.0
- School: Nebraska
- Height: 5’11
- Weight: 233 lbs (32.49 BMI)
- D.O.B: 10/2/1996 (age 22)
Ozigbo came into Nebraska as a three-star recruit out of Sachse High School in Texas. At the time, Ozigbo had 24 college offers. Of those 24, Ozigbo visited both two colleges (Nebraska and Iowa State) before committing to Nebraska. Ozigbo ran track in high school as well (100 Meter).
Ozigbo’s college career was a roller coaster. At no point in his four years at Nebraska did Ozigbo come in as the starting running back, but each year, by either injury or superior play, Ozigbo ended the season as the team’s leading rusher. Furthermore, Ozigbo showed the ability to work in different schemes as Nebraska transitioned from a pro-style offense to an RPO based offense which was run out of the shotgun. Tom Novak Award in 2018 “best exemplifies courage and determination despite all odds in the manner of Nebraska All-America center Tom Novak.”
Part of the reason Ozigbo has been successful in two different systems in college is his vision and patience to allow what’s in front of him develop. In a recent interview, Ozigbo said “I played in two very different offenses. My first few years there, I played in what you would call a pro-style offense. It taught me a lot about how to read defenses which helps prepare me for the next level. They obviously call it a pro-style offense for a reason. It helped get me acquainted with how things may work in the NFL. We then made a change to more of a spread offense. That’s what I believe the NFL is shifting towards now. I learned about zone reads and I had to catch the ball out of the backfield more frequently. It all came together nicely.” This versatility and ability to absorb information will serve Ozigbo well as he transitions to the next level and learns his new team’s offense.
Extremely strong in his lower body. Initiates contact with oncoming defenders. Uses his burst and fluidity in his cuts to take on defenders using advantageous angles. At the end of runs, when Ozigbo has gotten to top speed, it takes multiple defenders to bring him down. Even when those defenders meet him, he uses body flexibility and leverage to gain more yardage.
Receiving Game Experience
This may seem small, but Ozigbo only has 64 total college targets. Ozigbo does flash signs of being able to run routes and being useful in the passing game. Overall, he does not have the track record you want when trying to project a three-down running back to the next level.
#Nebraska RB Devine Ozigbo Pro Day Results (per source):
• HT: 5-11
• WT: 233
• 40: 4.54
• Vert: 37”
• Bench: 19 reps
All 32 teams were represented.
— Jordan Reid (@JReidNFL) March 7, 2019
Devine Ozigbo measured in BIG and his size adjusted speed score is around 110. This would have given Ozigbo the second best running back speed score at the 2019 NFL Combine. What is even more impressive,
In the 2019 NFL Draft, there is no “blue chip” running backs like in years past. You can poke holes in all of the top guys and play the guessing game with all of the later drafted running backs. Fortunately, Ozigbo has put enough on film and in testing to warrant a team taking a shot on him on Day 2. Working even more in Ozigbo’s favor is his team-first approach and propensity to seize opportunities when given the chance. Ideally, I would prefer to see Ozigbo play in a zone-based running scheme. His sharp cuts and initial burst would make him an ideal fit.
Devine Ozigbo is my favorite mid-round rookie running back of this class. His combination of size-adjusted athleticism, production, and tape are all key indicators I look for in target running backs in my rookie drafts. What makes Ozigbo’s even more exciting is his workhorse size profile. If he does end up landing on Day 2 of the NFL Draft I am planning on drafting him in the mid-second of rookie drafts.