Wisconsin running back Jonathan Taylor has widely been regarded as a “tier 1” prospect, assuming he enters the 2020 NFL draft, with Georgia’s D’Andre Swift and Clemson’s Travis Etienne most commonly grouped together.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean Taylor or any running back will wind up in the first round. It’s considered a deep draft for running backs, a position that’s been devalued in recent years as the league moves toward pass-first offenses. However, the depth at positions like wide receiver and offensive tackle could push players like Taylor down the draft.
But if a RB winds up going in the first round, Taylor 5-11, 219) stands as good of a chance as any of them. His production alone is impressive. Taylor rushed for 2,003 yards this year – his second consecutive 2,000-plus season — and a career-best 21 touchdowns. He also caught 26 passes for 252 yards and another 5 TDs.
His three-year totals are staggering: 6,174 yards and 50 TDs rushing, 42 receptions for 407 yards and 5 TDs receiving.
Jonathan Taylor gettin' his squad ready 😤 pic.twitter.com/aEzrxMdrQi
— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) January 1, 2020
Walter Football’s latest Hot Press report surveyed nine NFL team sources about what round Taylor could wind up going. Six of them pegged him as a first-rounder, while the others said he could wind up in the second.
“Most thought that Taylor would go in the first round, but he could slide because teams decide to address another position without as much depth as they feel they can still land a good running back on Day 2,” Charlie Campbell of Walter Football writes.
Taylor, the No. 31-ranked prospect in the latest Fanspeak-Steve big board, is also expected to test well at the Combine.