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Avon Cobourne

RB | (0-0, 205) | West Virginia
By Pro Football Weekly

Notes: Lettered in track in high school and reportedly ran the 100 meters in 10.56 seconds, which in no way translates into his timed speed or playing speed. Redshirted in 1998. Freshman All-American who led the Big East in rushing in '99, when he carried 224 times for 1,139 yards with 10 touchdowns and caught five passes for 63 yards. Second-team All-Big East in 2000, despite missing two games with foot and ankle injuries, and in '01, when he was team MVP. Carried 224-1,018-7 and caught 5-63 in 2000; and rushed 267-1,298-9 while catching 23-124 in '01. Was named first-team All-Big East and team MVP in '02, when he ran 310-1,593-15 and caught 15-146. Right foot injury kept him from participating in workouts at the Combine.

Positives: A powerful runner with a low center of gravity on the move who is quick to and through the hole. Has become even more physical with the ball in the last year and improved his blocking, vision and make-you-miss ability. Has initial quickness and changes direction quicker than you might think, which helped him break a long touchdown at the East-West Shrine game. Protects the ball well and is a willing blocker who has been very productive in a major conference. Is quick to see cutback lanes. Seems to catch well, using his hands, and has lined up in the slot. Durable and reliable, as he rushed 25 or more times in 10 of 13 games last season.

Negatives: Is very short and lacks timed and long speed. Not nearly as fast or explosive as the back he replaced at West Virginia (current Steelers RB Amos Zereoue) but similar in a number of respects. Might not be capable of playing every down because he doesn't offer the home-run threat teams are looking for. Can't turn the corner and might not be capable of running inside in the NFL, where linebackers will also dwarf him in coverage.

Summary: If he were two inches taller, Cobourne would be a highly-thought-of back. Even with a good East-West Shrine Game, he's still trying to prove he belongs. Still, he could be a second-day pick.

* Player biographies are provided by Pro Football Weekly.