Dameon Pierce Scouting Report: 2022 NFL Draft Prospect
University of Florida Gators, RB, #27
5′ 9″, 219lbs
40 time: 4.44-4.5
Dameon Pierce NFL Draft Profile
Pierce attended Bainbridge High School in Bainbridge, Georgia. As a 4 year starter for Bainbridge, He totaled 6,779 rushing yards and 92 TDs in his career, including two receiving touchdowns. He led his team to a 8-4 record his senior year and a berth in the 5A State Playoffs. Although they ultimately lost in the second round. Coming out of the Class of 2018, Pierce was ranked as the 8th running back in the country, according to 247Sports. He received many offers, including scholorships from Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, and Georgia, but decided to take his talents to the University of Florida.
For his entire tenure, Pierce played in a running back by committee. Although not a work-horse every down back, Pierce saw action in all but one game in all four years. Even though he was splitting carries, he averaged 5.5 yards per carry in his career.
In 50 games, he racked up 329 rushes for 1,806 yards and 23 TDs, 13 of which came in his senior season. Adding value to his game, he also is very useful out of the backfield. In his college career he tallied 45 receptions for 422 yards and 5 TDs.
Dameon Pierce Strengths
At 5’9 220lbs, you could assume that Pierce is just a big bruiser. However, to my surprise, he is an above average athlete in all facets of the running game. First, let me talk about his athleticism. He displays excellent quickness and agility. To compliment that, he is also very powerful with a very strong lower body. Pierce can cut on a dime and make people miss or run them over. Defenders never know which tool he will use to try to make them miss. He also has above average vision. Pierce can find little creases or backside openings. His foot quickness paired with his vision allows him to be in sync with his eyes and make sudden changes of direction to daylight. Because of his low center of gravity and ability to make people miss in multiple ways, he is a nightmare to bring down.
During his time at Florida, he was often one of three in the running back rotation. The Gators had a speed back who would be used in outside zones and the passing game. They also had a bruiser who was used in short yardage and gap schemes. Finally, they had Pierce who was used in both ways. He has the ability to be used in multiple ways. He can use his athletic ability in a zone scheme, his power and strength in a power scheme and his hands out of the backfield. Pierce is deceptively good at catching the ball and makes a great safety value or check down. On top of that, he showed an uncanny ability to pass protect during the Senior Bowl. He is a do-it-all guy that can be coached into whatever a team needs.
Dameon Pierce Areas of Improvement
Homerun vs. Next Play
This is crucial for his development: knowing when to go down. You can never fault a guy for good effort and playing to the whistle. However, there is a smart way to go about it. The problem I see on Pierce’s tape is that he can try too much at times. The way he makes people miss, he gets juke happy. Instead of playing for the next play, he tries too much and lets defenders rally. For instance, it will be 2nd & 7, he will have a 6 yard gain and try to juke three people to get that extra yard instead of knowing 3rd & 1 is better than a turnover or taking a huge hit. He tends to start playing hero ball. Avoiding unnessesary shots will help extend his career, especially at the next level.
If you were to just look at the stats, you could say Pierce has good ball security. He only had two fumbles lost over his collegiate career with nearly 400 touches. But, when you take a closer look at the film, there are some things he needs to clean up. First of all, there are too many times where he runs with the ball on his inside arm. He needs to make a habit of switching it to his outside arm to shield it from defenders. Secondly, the hero ball he plays will put him in bad situations. With the way NFL defenders have adopted the “Peanut Punch”, now more than ever ball carriers need to be aware of EVERYONE around them. The ball should be the main concern. Pierce needs to learn the subtleties that keep the ball in his offense’s possession. The things he got away with in college will be taken advantage of in the NFL. Simple habit changes will go a long way.
Dameon Pierce Draft Stock
He is ranked in the top ten of running backs on most big boards. After a stellar senior year at Florida, he shined at the Senior Bowl. He put in work all week during practice and definitely turned some heads. I am looking forward to seeing how his workout at the Combine will boost his stock. The biggest question that needs to be answered is his speed. He has average game speed, but if he can show out with a time in the high 4.4s or low 4.5s, he can really boost his stock even further. I project that he will be a round 3-5 guy that will become, at the very minimum, an excellent 3rd down back.
The one person that jumps out to me when watching Pierce is Clyde Edwards-Helaire. They are nearly identical in size and play style. They can be used in multiple ways and the ability to catch out of the backfield, the ability to make people miss with both agility and power, and the vision in a zone scheme are practically the same. Another DraftDive analyst, Ken Noble, sees a lot of Frank Gore’s game in Pierce.
Final Thoughts on Dameon Pierce Scouting Report
Pierce can be a weapon at the next level in multiple ways. His quickness, agility, good vision and excellent strength coupled with his pass catching ability make him a do-it-all kind of running back. He can be used in a variety of ways and cause confusion for a defense because they will not know how he will be used. If he can clean up some of his habits, I see him having a stellar career in the league.
Dameon Pierce Scouting Report Analyst-Austin Cundiff