The Texas A&M Football team’s 2021 season has begun. This year, the Aggies started on a high note, knocking off a strong MAC team in Kent State with relative ease. A&M was favored by just under 30 points and finished off the Golden Flashes by a margin of 31, setting up a promising season.
But one player who didn’t have the impact that most fans and experts were expecting was Isaiah Spiller. Even so, Spiller had a really solid game, rushing for over 100 yards while surpassing his career average in yards per carry.
This was on par with what Rivals expected, as they listed his Week 1 performance as one of the reasons why they believe him to be one of the best runningbacks in the country.
Here’s why Rivals thinks Texas A&M Football RB Isaiah Spiller will be the first ball carrier off the board in the 2022 NFL Draft
Even though Isaiah Spiller didn’t have the explosive outing against Kent State that many were expecting, he’s still on Rivals’ radar, making their list of top runningback prospects for the 2022 NFL Draft. On this list, Spiller landed at the top spot.
The reasoning behind his placement was blunt and simple. Here’s what National Columnist Mike Farrell said.
"“There is no surefire No. 1 running back yet in this draft class like Najee Harris last year but Spiller, with his vision and ability to gain yards after contact, is tops for now.”"
Their small description is true in every way. Spiller likely won’t be a Najee Harris must-have type of runningback, but his value is clear and simple. He’s a classic prototypical NFL runningback — this means that the team who selects him will know what they’re getting out of him. He’s the safe pick.
He’ll also likely be entering the NFL Draft on a relative down year at the runningback position. To put this into perspective, only five runningbacks eclipsed 200 yards in the first week of college football, making it the lowest number in years after the first week of the season.
Still, Spiller’s body of work and football abilities should not be diminished. Against Kent State, he may no have had the flashiest stat line, but he was the team’s workhorse for the entirety of the game. He accumulated 113 yards on 17 rushes and his longest rush only went for 19 yards. It’s hard to phrase this in a friendly way but what I’m trying to say is that he’s an extremely consistent back.
Jimbo Fisher knows what he’s getting out of Spiller. If he wants a burst of speed and big-play ability, he’ll throw Devon Achane into the game, which is exactly what he did against Kent State. Achane rushed 12 times for 124 yards and a pair of touchdowns with his longest run being a 63-yarder.
Expecting a strong game in Week 2 against Colorado would be a safe bet, as Spiller didn’t reach his full potential in the Aggies’ first contest.