Zamir 'Zeus' White - RB - Georgia
Welcome to the rookie profile for Zamir White. White was a talented recruit coming out of high school who committed to the University of Georgia. He had a rough start to his career, tearing his ACL before making it to campus and then tearing his other ACL right before he was ready to make his Bulldog debut. Despite his early struggles, he turned in 3 productive seasons with Georgia in their running back by committee approach. Now he has worked himself to becoming a prominent name in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Height: 6′ 0″
Weight: 215 lbs
3-cone drill: DNP
20-yard shuttle: DNP
Vertical Jump: DNP
Broad Jump: DNP
Bench Press: DNP
Zamir White committed to UGA as the top running back in his class and the 176th all-time recruit per 247Sports. Unfortunately, he ended his high school senior season with a torn ACL in his left knee. He was prepared to return for his true freshman season, but again tore his ACL in his right knee this time around. In 2019, Zamir White was once again ready for his college debut as a redshirt freshman, but he found both D’Andre Swift and Brian Herrien in front of him on the depth chart. Despite that, he contributed 428 yards of total offense and was the third running back in Georgia’s running back by committee. With his redshirt sophomore year coming up, Swift was off to the NFL and Herrien graduated. White became the lead back in the running back by committee, sharing the backfield with James Cook, Kenny McIntosh, Daijun Edwards, and Kendall Milton. White led the team in rushing in both of his final seasons and contributed over 800 total yards from scrimmage in both the 2020 and 2021 seasons. His efforts his senior year played an integral part in the Bulldogs’ National Championship run.
With one year left of eligibility, Zamir White decided to declare for the 2022 NFL Draft. So far he has impressed during the offseason and pre-draft workouts. His workouts at the combine translated to a 4.40 40 yard dash (96th percentile), 114.2 Speed Score (95th percentile), and a 121.0 Burst Score (65th percentile) per playerprofiler. Those combine numbers also translate to a 9.82/10 Relative Athletic Score. He proved on the field throughout his collegiate career and through his athletic testing that he is an uber athlete.
Zamir White has a case to be the best pure rusher in the 2022 draft class. He possesses good vision and great burst once he identifies the running lane at the line of scrimmage or in the open field. At 6’0” and 214 lbs, he has prototypical size and the power and contact balance that comes with that size. He consistently fights for extra yards, pushes piles, runs through arm tackles, or bounces off tacklers. For a running back at his size, they will usually struggle with change of direction or elusiveness. That isn’t the case for White as he constantly demonstrated his ability to work through tight spaces and make defenders miss in the backfield or in the open field. And once he gets to the open field, he can turn on the burners that we saw on display with his 4.40 40 yard dash. He provides an explosive or home run threat when he works his way into the open field. Additionally, he provides adequate pass protection, utilizing his physicality and size. Occasionally he lets defenders slip by due to poor form or missing assignments, but that’s an area that he can work on.
The biggest area of concern with Zamir White’s game is his production in the passing game. Throughout his collegiate career, he only caught 17 balls for 132 yards and no touchdowns, never eclipsing a 2.95% target share. Even on tape, he never showed anything that would alleviate the lack of passing game involvement. When targeted he showed body catches and a handful of drops. While he was a shifty runner with good footwork at the line of scrimmage, at times it appeared he was indecisive. Occasionally getting happy feet while waiting for the offensive line to set up in front of him. Additionally, his two ACL tears have to be brought up. We’ve seen three healthy seasons from him that lessen the concerns with his ACL and he has put on display explosiveness and power, showing he hasn’t lost a step. Being so far removed from the injuries, he seems to be in the clear, but the ACLs are still part of his backstory. His future draft capital will tell us a lot of what the NFL and medical teams think about the concern of his previous injuries.
Pre Draft Analysis
Expected Draft Capital- Round 4
White is an excellent pure rusher with clear limitations in the passing game. The passing game involvement he can work on at the next level, and if it does develop, White could become a legitimate force as a three-down running back. Until then, he projects as a 1a in a running back by committee similar to the situation he was in at Georgia. Also, similar to another former Georgia running back’s situation in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, which might be his best-case scenario. The Buffalo Bills would be a good fit for White, working as the lead back with Singletary working in as the change of pace and receiving back. The Atlanta Falcons have been linked to being a running back needy team and White would also serve as a complement to the swiss army knife that is Cordarelle Patterson. Finally, the Miami Dolphins are another running back needy team. Despite signing both Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert, if Zamir falls far enough in the draft he provides a different skillset and a higher ceiling than both Edmonds and Mostert. Plus he would then be on a rookie contract, so if he works out they have an out in Edmonds contract following the 2022 season and Mostert is only on a one-year deal.
Post Draft Analysis
Las Vegas Raiders- Round 4, Pick 17
In the same offseason that the Raiders declined to pick up Josh Jacobs’ fifth-year option, they selected Zamir White in the fourth round of the NFL Draft. It seems like the writing is on the wall for Jacobs, although the door is open to resigning Jacobs if White doesn’t show flashes during the 2022 season. Outside of Jacobs, there is also Kenyan Drake to provide a unique passing down skillset, but also muddies the water for both Jacobs and White and their fit into the system. At the very least, the Raiders sure up their running back room and have protected themselves against an injury to either Drake or Jacobs in what appears to be a running back by committee. With the attention they gave to the offensive side of the ball this offseason, including the Davante Adams trade, it seems like the Raiders’ organization is all-in on building around Derek Carr and making a deep playoff run.
White lands in a crowded backfield where Josh Jacobs has dominated the volume in recent years. Kenyan Drake is also a big part of the backfield as an explosive player and 3rd down specialist. It doesn’t leave a lot of room for Zamir White to find his way right off the bat, but if he can impress the coaches early on, he might be able to secure a role in the committee of running backs. New Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels has demonstrated over multiple years that he likes to employ a running back by committee approach while the offensive coordinator with the New England Patriots. But looking forward, if White does display what he put on film at the University of Georgia this season, he could make a legitimate case for the Raiders to stick with White over Jacobs on a second contract following the conclusion of the 2022 season. In dynasty, White is a home run swing at the end of the second round or top of the third round in dynasty rookie drafts. He has a high ceiling but a low floor to match it. In redraft, it’s probably best to avoid White and wait until everyone gets a better look at what the backfield looks like at the beginning of the regular season and be ready to grab him off waivers if there’s an injury.
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Image Credit: Brett Davis – USA TODAY Sports