Oct. 29, 2011; Los Angeles, CA, USA; UCLA Bruins running back Derrick Coleman (33) runs for a touchdown against the California Golden Bears in the fourth quarter of the game at the Rose Bowl. UCLA won 31-17. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

Detroit Lions Draft Prospects: Derrick Coleman, RB, UCLA

Derrick Coleman, RB, UCLA
Height: 5’11”
Weight: 230 lbs
40 Yrd Dash: 4.50 sec
225 Lb. Bench: 20 reps
Vertical Jump: 36-1/2″
Broad Jump: 10’5″
20 Yrd Shuttle: 4.49 sec
3-Cone Drill: 7.34 sec

The Lions figure to draft a poor man’s Jahvid Best rather than another big back in this weekends draft but UCLA’s Derrick Coleman is one player they brought in for a pre-draft visit so their interest in him can’t be ignored. Not surprisingly, Coleman’s best trait is his power and his ability to pick up the tough yard, like here against Arizona State’s Vontaze Burfict:

Unfortunately, sometimes this is the result:

Guess which linebacker is going to get drafted ahead of the other? Yeah, it’s Kendricks.

The National Football Post’s Wes Bunting sees problems for Coleman’s game as it translates to the NFL level. Here’s an excerpt from his scouting report:

Doesn’t press the line of scrimmage quickly and once he gains a step fails to get up to speed quickly and accelerate into daylight. Isn’t real dynamic in any area of the game and isn’t going to break nearly as many tackles in the NFL as he did in college.

Coleman’s saving grace may be that he was willing and able to contribute on kick coverage units even as he became UCLA’s second-leading rusher during his season as a senior. His efforts on special teams were rewarded by the coaching staff in the way of being named the team’s special teams player of the year and Coleman was also recognized as a second-team All-Pac 12 special teams performer.

Derrick Coleman seems to possess some qualities that can be useful on an NFL roster but it wouldn’t be a surprise if his name is not called from the Radio City Music Hall stage. The pre-draft visit may have simply been a chance for the Lions to get a medical check of Coleman and meet with him in person since he was not invited to the combine. He could be on their radar as an undrafted free agent.

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Tags: 2012 NFL Draft Derrick Coleman UCLA

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