Only one running back was drafted in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, and the same thing could happen this year. Alabama’s Najee Harris and Clemson’s Travis Etienne stand out from the rest of the pack, but backs who are selected later on in the draft hav a chance to be impact players as well. Oklahoma State’s Chuba Hubbard is a sleeper worth keeping an eye on. He rushed for 625 yards and five touchdowns last season in seven games before opting out for the year, but led the nation with 2,097 rushing yards the previous season. He averaged at least six yards per carry in each of his first two collegiate seasons and could make. difference at the next level early if he lands in the right spot.
Hubbard is durable and produced at a high level while regularly racking up more than 20 carries per game in his final two seasons with the Cowboys. He’s able to use his vision and agility to cut through clutter efficiently and can be an asset as a pass catcher. It’s unlikely that he’ll get the same workload he had in college at the next level though, so working on pass protection and ball security are a must if he wants to be a key contributor.
— NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein
Mock Draft landing spots
There’s been no indication that any team is targeting Hubbard at this point, but the a few teams with questionable running back situations could take a flier on him in the third round or later. The Arizona Cardinals, New York Jets, and Miami Dolphins could have interest.
Fantasy impact: Rookie year
Hubbard seems destined to be part of a committee in his rookie year, so don’t expect him to be one of the most impactful first-year players. He typically needs a healthy helping of carries to establish a rhythm and get going. He could have a spike in production in some weeks, but it’s hard to see him being a reliable option for season-long fantasy.
Fantasy impact: Career
Hubbard can put up absurd numbers as the top option in a backfield. If he moves out of a backup roll and develops his pass-catching skills a little more, he can be a middle-of-the-pack starter in standard and PPR formats. Finding the right offense with a zone scheme will be key to maximizing his potential, though.