2014 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Lache Seastrunk

March 9th, 2014

Baylor’s Lache Seastrunk lacks the vision and experience in the passing game to make an immediate impact at the NFL level (Photo: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

DraftBrowns.com Staff Writer: Justin Higdon

The Browns running back situation seemed promising heading into the 2013 season. Trent Richardson was healthy and supposedly ready to live up to the lofty expectations that came with being the third overall pick in the 2012 draft. But two games into the season he seemed reluctant, and at times incapable of even seeing an open running lane. With an opportunity to cut bait and recoup a first round pick, the Cleveland front office dumped Richardson off on the Colts – a savvy move, but one that left the team with a scrap heap of backs on the roster. The Browns relied on journeymen Willis McGahee, Fozzy Whitaker and Chris Ogbonnaya, and by the end of the season were leaning on practice squad signee Edwin Baker. The position needs an upgrade, but with Kyle Shanahan in town running the offense, it seems likely he will be able to convince the brass that he can turn a mid-to-late round draft choice into gold. In that case, one name who could pique Cleveland’s interest in that area of the draft is Baylor’s Lache Seastrunk.

Lache Seastrunk RB

School: Baylor

Height: 5’9 1/8”

Weight: 201 pounds

Hand: 9 1/4”

Arm: 30”

40-yard Dash: 4.51

Bench: 15 reps

Vertical: 41.5”

Broad: 11’ 2”

Date of Birth: 7/29/1991

Seastrunk was a blue chip recruit out of Texas in 2010, and chose Oregon over major local programs Texas, Texas A&M, and Baylor. After redshirting during his first year on campus, he wound up buried on the depth chart and embroiled in a recruiting scandal centered around a “talent broker” and former Oregon Head Coach Chip Kelly. Seastrunk left the Pacific Northwest and returned to Texas where he settled in at Baylor. After sitting out another season due to NCAA transfer rules, he finally suited up for the Bears in 2012. Over the past two seasons, Seastrunk rushed for 2189 yards and 18 touchdowns while averaging an impressive 7.6 yards per carry. Without much left to prove in a limited role in Baylor’s offense, the soon-to-be 23-year old running back opted to make the jump to the NFL.

Seastrunk is an explosive athlete as evidenced by his impressive numbers in both vertical and broad jumps. The burst is on display when he accelerates out of his cuts. He timed at just over 4.5 seconds in the 40 at last month’s scouting combine, but he appears even faster on tape. Still, that time had to be a bit of a disappointment for a player who some thought would time in the 4.3-second range.

Aside from his athletic testing, Seastrunk will face scrutiny due to Baylor’s offensive system. With the field spread and the quarterback taking a number of shots deep down the field in an up-tempo attack, running backs often have gaping lanes available. Even with these favorable conditions, Seastrunk seems late to recognize the holes, and often comes to an a complete stop behind the line of scrimmage before deciding which way to go. He is so fast out of his cuts that this didn’t pose many problems during his college career, but it’s a recipe for tackles for loss at the NFL level. One of Richardson’s biggest issues in Cleveland was an inability to see the hole, and Seastrunk exhibits some of the same difficulties. In the Big 12, a runner can get away with running into his guard’s back and then bouncing outside, but this won’t always be the case against speedier NFL defenders.

Seastrunk doesn’t appear to have the vision to be an every down back in the professional ranks, but his quick feet and change of direction skills could make him a valuable role player in a committee backfield. However, running backs in this situation need to be able to catch the ball, and Seastrunk caught just nine passes as a sophomore, and zero as a junior. Not a one. There simply isn’t much evidence on tape that he can be a legitimate receiving threat. Seastrunk reportedly caught the ball well in drills during the combine, and his tools suggest he can be an asset in the passing game, but it’s largely a leap of faith. There are other backs available who are more proven commodities in this respect, and that could push Seastrunk down a number of draft boards.

All told, the redshirt junior entry is an upside pick. Will teams sell themselves that he can be more than what he’s shown on tape as a collegian? Had he run a 4.3 at the combine, this would have been an easier sell. Still, he possesses athleticism and quickness that cannot be coached, and these qualities are enticing to most NFL personnel types. A team could convince itself that Seastrunk’s vision will improve and that he can be a capable receiving threat; but that amounts to a lot of projecting, and with other, more complete options available, selecting him before Day Three seems like a risky proposition.

Draft Projection: Fourth or Fifth Round

Game Notes:

Vs. Texas Tech (’12)

  • Good burst and power to the line of scrimmage (LOS)
  • Shows really good patience, quick feet and is shifty in the open field
  • Really nice balance
  • Low center of gravity
  • Doesn’t dance behind the LOS
  • So much speed, can change direction on a dime
  • Stays up after first contact
  • Showing good strength
  • Can bounce outside but doesn’t automatically look to do so
  • Shows a good stiff arm

Vs. West Virginia (’13)

  • Runs straight into the LOS and stops – bounces outside to the left (L) and turns the corner – breaks a tackle and picks up a few yards after contact
  • Runs straight into the LOS
  • Misses a huge running lane to the right (R) and cuts back through a small crease to the middle – races to the outside and down the R sideline (SL) for a long TD
  • Stays back in pass pro and helps out the RT
  • Quick shoulder fake and bursts through the hole for a first down
  • Steps through a tackle at the LOS and picks up a few yards
  • Speed to run wide and turn the corner
  • Can tend to run to a full stop before gearing up to make his move
  • Bottled up to the R and then reverses field and gets tackled for a big loss
  • Stays in to pass protect and goes to the wrong guy – almost misses a blitz pickup

Vs. Iowa State (’13)

  • Bottled up for a loss but never had a chance
  • Tip toes and runs into the back of the RG – makes a little something out of it
  • Hesitates toward the LOS but pushes his way into the end zone (EZ)
  • Comes to a complete stop behind the LOS – tries to jump cut to the right (R) but gets cut down
  • Turns the corner to the L and tries to throw a stiff arm but gets tackled out of bounds
  • Bursts through the hole and makes a slick jump cut to the left – accelerates ahead and steps through a tackle for first down yardage
  • Smooth open field runner with good balance and able to rotate his hips to change directions
  • Can tend to gather himself like a bigger back might
  • Stays on to pass pro and connects on a cut block

Vs. Kansas (’13)

  • Gives some help to the RT in pass pro
  • Tries to turn the corner to the R and gets strung out to the SL
  • Defaults to working his way outside and always seems to think he can turn the corner for a big gain
  • Stops dead at the LOS and accelerates after the first man misses to pick up first down yardage
  • Follows his RG and stops – accelerates and picks up yardage
  • Starts to the outside and then blasts through a cutback lane and makes a move in the open field to get free and race to the EZ – smooth hip swivel to shake the defender one on one
  • Turns the corner and walks the tight rope down the R SL
  • Stays in to pass protect – isn’t going to lay anyone out but slides and gets himself into the right position
  • Runs into the back of his OL and comes to a stop – bottled up for a loss
  • Runs R and reverses his field back to the L – picks his way through traffic and gets a first down – very risky play – looked like a punt return man
  • Such quick feet and can stop on a dime

Vs. Central Florida (’13)

  • Tries to turn the corner to the L and gets strung out to the SL
  • Scoots through the hole and bounces outside – shows quick feet and good balance skipping down the SL and staying in bounds for extra yards after contact (YAC)
  • Excellent speed and quickness bursting through the hole and showing smooth hip swivel on subtle open field change of direction (COD) to pick up extra YAC on a long run
  • Stops at the LOS and makes his way to the L corner – not always decisive enough and will lose yards on these plays in the NFL
  • Follows his block over RG and makes a quick cut back to the middle – sprints ahead for a big gain
  • Gets around the R corner and finishes the run with power to pick up a few extra yards

Tags: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Prospect Profile, 2014 Running Back Prospects, Baylor, Lache Seastrunk, NFL Draft, Prospect Profile

One Response to “2014 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Lache Seastrunk”

  1. I was all for the Browns spending their second rounder on the BRBA. This was before Shanahan was hired. I’m still somewhat intrigued by Hyde at that slot (who wouldn’t be), but ther are two 3rd – 5th rounders I’m more intrigued with because of the value they would represent in a Shanahan offensive system.
    Those would be Charles Sims of West Virginia and Marion Grice of Arizona St. Both are in the 6-0/ 215 range with proven excellent hands. Believe both can run in the 4.4′s also. Both have plenty of upside due to differing reasons outside of their control of not having met their expectations so far. Look into them for yourself. You may be surprised that their names are not being mentioned with the Hydes, Seastrunks and Sankeys.





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