Matt Forte was a second-round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, part of a talented class that featured five running backs taken in the first round. He made an immediate impact as a rookie with the Bears. So he knows good running back prospects when he sees them.
This year’s draft class features two backs — Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott and Alabama’s Derrick Henry — who could be starters early in their careers. Elliott is widely believed to be a top-10 pick, while Henry may be available at the top of the second round or late in the first round.
“Ezekiel Elliott is obviously a top back, Derrick Henry as well, but they both have different styles,” said the Jets’ Forte during a call to promote Verizon’s NFL Mobile app. “I think they both bring something different to the table.Big BoardNewsday's Big Board: Top 100 NFL draft prospects
“Derrick is a very big, large running back, kind of a Brandon Jacobs size-wise type of running back. Ezekiel’s a little smaller but still stocky and a strong runner.
“So they both bring different things to the table. They’ve both got good size and speed. I think Ezekiel, his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield might separate him a little bit from Derrick, but I think they’ll both come in and make an impact early on.”