2021 NFL Draft Profile: Khalil Herbert

Herbert's varied skill set and size should help him claim a spot on an NFL roster

Teams looking to give their backfield a boost will have plenty of running back options to choose from in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft, including Khali Herbert. Here's a look at what teams like and have some concerns about when it comes to taking a chance on the former Virginia Tech and Kansas back.


(This profile is one of 230 featured in the Athlon Sports 2021 NFL Draft Guide. With in-depth scouting reports on the top prospects, position rankings, and more, no source will have you better prepared for draft day. Click here to get your copy.)


Khalil Herbert Draft Profile


College: Virginia Tech
Class: Sr.
Height: 5'9"
Weight: 215


Strong Points

A slashing one-cut back with good size and a no-nonsense style, Herbert had a breakout season in 2020. He has a sturdy build and shows good burst once he plants his foot. He finds creases and gets to the second level, where he maintains top speed while angling away from linebackers. He has good balance through contact and finishes well. He flashed potential in the passing game, and he proved adept at snatching the ball away from his body. He’s a willing pass protector as well.


Weak Points

Herbert lacks the kind of long speed to hit the home run against NFL athletes. He doesn’t show a lot of violence at the second level; he’s more of a churning runner once he gets through to the linebackers, either angling away or falling forward rather than thrashing through tackles.



He might never be a true featured runner, but he should be a complementary back in a wide-zone running scheme, and his passing-game skills could lead to an expanded role.


Final Grade: 3rd/4th round


2016 8 44 189 4.3 3 5 38 0
2017 11 120 663 6.0 4 8 38 0
2018 12 113 499 4.4 5 9 39 0
2019 4 43 384 9.0 2 1 -1 0
2020 11 154 1,182 7.7 8 10 179 1
Career 46 474 2,917 6.2 22 33 293 1


Athlon Sports 2021 NFL Draft Guide


(Top photo courtesy of hokiesports.com)

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