Implications after West loaded up on RBs

NFC West teams loaded up on halfbacks (as opposed to pure fullbacks) during the recently completed 2013 NFL draft.

The division selected six of them, two more than any other division selected.

2013 NFL Draft: Halfbacks by Round Range

A quick look at how the six could figure into their teams' plans:

  • Second round, 62nd overall: Christine Michael, Texas A&M. Michael heads to the Seattle Seahawks as the third back behind Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin, with a chance to challenge Turbin for the No. 2 role initially. Michael provides longer-term insurance for the position, but he could be talented enough to get carries as a rookie.

  • Fourth round, 131st overall: Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina. The San Francisco 49ers plan to give Lattimore as much as one full season to complete his rehabilitation from a career-threatening knee injury. Lattimore factors into the 49ers' longer-term plans at the position, possibly as a replacement for Frank Gore down the line. There will be no rush to get him on the field in 2013.

  • Fifth round, 140th overall: Stepfan Taylor, Stanford. The Arizona Cardinals already have Rashard Mendenhall and Ryan Williams, but both have had injury problems. Taylor, the career rushing leader at Stanford, provides immediate insurance at the position. His credentials as a power runner could make him a candidate to handle short-yardage duties. Durability has been a strength for Taylor, differentiating him from Mendenhall and Williams. Coach Bruce Arians values three-down backs. He considers Taylor one of them.

  • Fifth round, 160th overall: Zac Stacy, Vanderbilt. The St. Louis Rams plan to use Stacy in committee with Isaiah Pead and Daryl Richardson. Stacy is heavier and stouter than the others. He appears better suited for handling a workload on early downs and in short-yardage situations. Stacy could wind up getting more carries than any of the other rookie backs in the division.

  • Sixth round, 187th overall: Andre Ellington, Clemson. The Cardinals expect to keep four running backs on the roster, giving Ellington a very good chance to stick as a change-of-pace back with big-play potential and value in the return game. The Cardinals said they weren't planning on drafting another back, but they thought the value was strong and that Ellington provided a style the other backs on the roster did not provide.

  • Sixth round, 194th overall: Spencer Ware, LSU. Ware was a halfback for the Tigers, but he has also played fullback. The Seahawks expect the 230-pound Ware to push veteran fullback Michael Robinson. They value Robinson as a lead blocker and for his contributions on special teams. Ware would be the better runner of the two.