• I realize that Samaje Perine won't start over Rob Kelley to begin the year, but I still strongly believe it would be a mistake to think Kelley will win this in the long run. Kelley's current place in the lineup, I would argue, is entirely founded on coach familiarity rather than any sort of demonstrable merit. That familiarity may be valuable to coach Jay Gruden during the controlled setting of training camp, but that comfort would wane in the face of a production shortage, and there's plenty of reason Kelley will see such shortages early and often as his work sample grows.
Kelley finished his Tulane career having never earned a starting role, playing behind all of Orleans Darkwa, Dontrell Hilliard, and Sherman Badie at various points. Despite playing off the bench at a low level of competition, Kelley showed neither efficiency nor explosiveness as a runner, finishing with just 1,270 yards over 318 carries (4.0 YPC). Additionally, Kelley's poor workout numbers means he has no physical tools with which to project any substantial improvement. He ran a 4.68-second 40-yard dash despite running it in a pro day setting, otherwise posting a 110-inch broad jump and 11.82 agility score.
Perine ran a 4.65-second 40 at the Combine, adding a 116-inch broad jump and 11.63 agility score. More importantly, Perine was dominant even as a true freshman at Oklahoma, where playing time and production are much harder to come by than at Tulane. Despite competing for carries against much