A burner tailor made for any zone run scheme, Abanikanda glides in the open field.
* = unofficial measurement
One of the youngest players in the draft (he won’t turn 21 until October), Abanikanda is an explosive runner with blazing wheels.
He can get to top flight speed in an instant and consistently runs skinny through tight lanes. Once he sees an opening at the second level of the field, it’s extremely difficult for defenders to get an angle on him. One step ahead quickly turns into daylight and six points for Abanikanda.
He doesn’t have high end contact balance or an abundance of creativity, but it’s simply so hard for defenders to get a hand on him. His sprint is more of a glide rather than a train rolling down the tracks.
In the passing game, Pitt utilized Abanaikanda on slip screens where he could capitalize on his acceleration in the open field. He was oddly only targeted 17 times in 2022. This aspect of his game should grow at the next level, despite his pass protection being far from pro ready.
Teams leaning on the inside and outside zone running game will find the youngster from Pitt as an easy scheme fit. When given room, he has the ability to break off chunks that average running backs do not.
A roster with a thunderous power back would be well suited to make Abanikanda their lightning on day two.