Vision: Illustrates good vision for the most part. Does a good job of reading leveraged defenders to direct the most efficient path. Also knows how to lead linebackers into blocks to create space. Versatile with his pace/decision making. Is usually decisive but demonstrates patience when needed. Would like to see him run through open holes with more urgency and conviction. Always looking to create on his own and will minimize his gains because of it.
Burst and Long Speed: Burst is unimpressive. Doesn’t possess the optimal “0 to 60” acceleration. Often runs at lackadaisical pace in order to be methodical with his movements. Can actually jolt forward a good amount when jump cutting. Just doesn’t carry much momentum that translates to speed when doing so. Long speed is adequate. Needs room and time to reach his top gear but can break plays open if he gets there. Looks noticeably slower when running laterally.
Contact Balance and Power: Contact balance is solid. Rarely goes down after first contact and has natural feel for getting his body in the optimal position to slip out of tackles. Also understands how to bounce out of scrums to find space. Utilizes frame and sturdy lower body to run with power as well. Can deliver a blow to defenders to clear his path. Forward lean is evident but would like to see him fight for extra yards when getting help up by tacklers. Adequate in short yardage situations, yet not his specialty.
Elusiveness: Extremely elusive. Deploys a variety of ball carrier moves in the open field that make him extremely hard to get down. Cuts and jukes are nuanced with head fakes and stutter steps that mislead defenders. Utilizes spin moves, stiff arms, and hurdles as well. Illustrates a natural ability to make defenders miss. However, doesn’t possess enough juice to be overly dynamic in space.
Change of Direction: Loose hips and feathery feet allow him to change directions with ease. Especially when running vertically. Has no trouble of redirecting his path when getting to the second level. Lateral range is impressive.
Receiving Ability: Wasn’t much of a factor as a receiver at Penn State. However, skill set translates relatively well to the passing game. Possesses optimal stop and start quickness to expand his route tree. Might struggle getting open against more athletic linebacker due to his lack of explosiveness.
Pass Protection: Okay in pass pro but will need to improve. Too eager to escape the pocket to become a receiver. Would like to see him be more vigilant when scanning the LOS.
Best Trait: Change of Direction
Worst Trait: Burst
Best Film: University of Illinois (2018)
Worst Film: Michigan (2018)
Miles Sanders is an elusive runner with excellent change of direction skills. If he could improve his receiving/pass protecting skill set he might be a be able to earn a featured role at the next level. However, because he doesn’t possess top end burst and isn’t a true battering ram, so he is probably best suited in a committee. A change of pace role would be ideal. He is most effective in vertical concepts, preferably inside zone. But is capable in outside zone if called upon.