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Player Profile: Michael Carter

Michael Carter is an intriguing prospect heading into the 2021 NFL Draft

Height: 5’8”
Weight: 199 lbs
School: North Carolina
NFL Comparison: Giovanni Bernard

Why you’re drafting him…

This dude might bring a new meaning to the word “explosive”. He’s got tremendous burst and breaks off chunk play after chunk play. He carried the ball 156 times in his senior year for 1,245 yards (that’s EIGHT yards PER CARRY!) and nine touchdowns. Believe it or not, he had more rushing yards than his highly sought-after teammate, Javonte Williams, in both 2019 and 2020. He also was effective in the passing game, grabbing 25 balls for 267 yards and two additional scores. He’s a natural pass catcher and is capable of a crazy level of acceleration that you’d like to see on routes out of the backfield. He may be a bit on the smaller side, but his burst is elite, he’s extremely agile and the versatility he has as a runner/receiver could make one great addition to a lucky NFL roster

Needs to improve…

First thing I’m going to knock about Carter is obviously his size. With that being said, he’s going to have a hard time out muscling defenders at the next level. His contact balance is about what you’d expect for a guy of his stature, which means he’ll have to work twice as hard if he wants to withstand tackles in the NFL. He likely won’t be a workhorse at his size, but there’s still plenty of value that he can add to a team. My biggest red flag with Carter is his pass blocking. Carter’s bread and butter is likely going to be his pass-catching ability, but if he gets blown up as a blocker, they’re not going to trust him on third downs. This is something that he can work on but will take some time to get down, so I’d expect a slow start for him. On the bright side, I think he’d fare well as a receiver in two-back sets or even lined up in the slot on occasion. Like I said, he’s an excellent pass catcher and seemingly knows what he’s doing wherever he is lined up. I imagine coaches will figure out a way to get the ball in his hands sooner or later

Prediction for 2021 NFL Draft…

Carter won’t be drafted to be a team’s RB1, but I do imagine he lands with a team that’ll put him to work immediately. He’ll likely be a late third-round pick but does have the potential to fall to day three. The most likely landing spots for him include Tampa Bay, Atlanta, Jacksonville and New England. I’m predicting that Michael Carter will be the fifth back selected in the NFL Draft

Dynasty fantasy football spin…

Based on the landing spots above, I’d be AMPED if Carter ended up in Atlanta. The Falcons are searching for their next running back after the Todd Gurley experiment failed miserably. If he can get his pass blocking up to par by week one, Carter would factor in immediately as their guy on third down. Given the competition on that roster, I think Carter would also enter the conversation for first and second downs as well. He’s likely a late first-round pick in dynasty rookie drafts, but his stock will depend entirely on landing spot. I’d say the ceiling would definitely be with Atlanta, where I’d expect him to go somewhere between 1.08 and 1.12. However, landing in a crummy landing spot could push him back to the early second round

Check out Zach Hicks of Stampede Blue break down Michael Carter with the guys on the Loaded Box Podcast (Carter discussion starts at the 14:40 mark of the episode)

Back to complete list of 2021 player profiles

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