NFL player comparisons for Pittsburgh Steelers RB Najee Harris
By Tommy Jaggi
The Steelers got a well-rounded running back in Alabama’s Najee Harris. Here are his high-end, low-end, and most likely comparisons in the NFL.
For only the second time in the past 31 years, the Pittsburgh Steelers took a running back in the first round of the NFL draft. This is a position that the team has never put a lot of draft capital into. Even Jerome Bettis and Le’Veon Bell – two of the best backs to ever wear black and gold – were acquired for just second-round picks.
Fans clearly have high hopes for rookie running back Najee Harris, and it’s fair to expect big things. Najee was a terrific runner during his college days at Alabama, but who does he compare to in the NFL?
This is one of my favorite pieces every year. Fans want to know who their top draft choices could potentially be in the NFL. After putting in many hours of film study, here are my high-end, low-end, most likely NFL player comparisons for new Steelers running back, Najee Harris:
High-end NFL comparison: Steven Jackson
Every Steelers fan should be thrilled if this is the player that Harris ends up being for the Steelers. Though Steven Jackson never earned honors as a first-team All-Pro player, he was one of the best backs in the business for a very long time.
There are many similarities that Harris shares with Jackson. For starters, both running backs were considered first-round prospects coming out of college, and they had very similar size profiles (6’2”, 230-plus pounds). However, instead of just being bruising backs that charged up the middle of the defense, Jackson and Harris both have an incredible amount of finesse for their size.
What’s perhaps most similar between the two backs is their ability to dominate in every facet of the game – particularly as receivers. Even at his size, Jackson was one of the best receiving backs in the game. In 2006, he earned a whopping 90 catches and 806 receiving yards. In his best-case scenario, Harris could follow a similar path. If he can stay pretty healthy and have a long NFL career, this is a perfect high-end comparison for Najee Harris.