The Senior Bowl is college football’s biggest postseason All-Star game, but now it will not feature one of college football’s biggest stars.
Ohio State Buckeyes running back Carlos Hyde has decided not to participate in the Senior Bowl this Saturday. Why? Well, normally players will choose to skip this game if they are advised by their agents that they won’t be doing themselves any favors by participating. Now Hyde’s only opportunities to show off his skills before the 2014 NFL Draft will be at the NFL Scouting Combine and in individual workouts. He also gave up a chance to answer some questions in a game atmosphere. A good performance in the Senior Bowl likely would’ve made him a first-round lock in the draft. Hyde is projected to be taken late in the first-round anyway, but a great, question-answering performance in the Senior Bowl would have boosted his stock.
Running backs tend to be devalued in the draft as last year there were no running backs taken in round one. Hyde has an opportunity to change that, but without an appearance in the Senior Bowl it is still a question as to whether he will go in the first-round or not. He is considered to be one of the top running backs in the draft, but the bigger question now is if he will be taken late in the first-round like he is projected or early in the second.
Hyde ran for 1,521 yards this season despite being suspended for the first three games for an off-field incident for an average of 138 rushing yards per game. He and Braxton Miller made up one of the most explosive running games in the country. He made a good case for himself in 2013, but if he wants to be a lock in the first-round of the draft then he will have to make sure he performs very well at the combine and in his individual workouts.