It's being reported that running back Alex Green made quite an impression at the University of Hawaii Pro Day on Thursday, "displaying sound hands and smooth cuts as four running back coaches observed." One of those in attendance was Bengals RB coach Jim Anderson, as well as those from the Dolphins, Eagles, and Ravens.
Last year Green led the nation in yards per carry (8.2) while rushing for 1,199 yards and 15 touchdowns in Hawaii's largely pass-oriented offense.
Originally projected as a mid-round pick -- CBS sports ranks him as the 14th best RB prospect -- Green may start moving up some draft boards. He put up a strong performance the NFL combine, where he surprised many with his receiving and cutting ability. He also had a surprising 4.45 in his 40-yard dash, a time that might mitigate some concerns that he's more of an oversized running back/fullback type. Green appears to have raised his stock even further with his strong workout yesterday.
If the Bengals allow Cedric Benson to go, Green might be an interesting guy to pair with the smaller, shiftier Bernard Scott. CBS Sports has this to say about Green:
Big, tough, physical cut-and-go back with a knack for lowering his shoulder and creating contact. Decisive, hard runner who knows where he's going as soon as he gets the ball. Reaches top speed quickly with a quick first step and strong initial burst toward the hole. Keeps his weight forward and feet churning, rarely falling back or losing yardage. Quick feet for a back of his size. Willingly engages defenders along the sideline to earn the extra yard rather than stepping out of bounds. Soft, reliable hands as a pass-catcher.
This hard-nosed style had earned Green the label of a one-dimensional player,but if his recent performances hold true, he may end up being more than a backup type in the NFL. For the Bengals, maybe Green could serve as a 3rd-down counter to Scott's shiftiness, fighting for those tough yards up the middle that always seemed to elude the team last season.