27 Aug Preseason Scouting Notes: Mohamed Ibrahim, RB, Minnesota
Redshirt Junior | 5’10” 215 lbs | Baltimore, MD
A bruising, yet slippery runner with high-end contact balance who lacks home run speed and needs to improve his third down impact
Mohamed Ibrahim came to Minnesota as a 3-star recruit and was thrust into a starting role as a redshirt freshman after injuries to the Golden Gophers’ top two backs. He finished with over 1,000 yards rushing in his starting role, but had his workload slashed last season as his role was cut to part-time. Ibrahim receives a lot of carries on power, duo, and RPO runs and is a slippery, “juke you out in a phone booth” type of back. He’s a stout, thickly built runner with power in his legs and will be the unquestioned starter for Minnesota if they play in 2020.
– High-end contact balance to bounce off tacklers and consistently fall forward due to his low center of gravity, play strength and natural balance
– Elusive player in the open field or in tight spaces due to the suddenness of his jukes, cuts and spins
– Good short-area quickness and burst to plant and go and get from first to second level quickly
– Shows serious lower-body power to drive the pile forward with leg churn and determination
– Does a good job of patiently pressing the LOS to manipulate linebackers before making a decision on what hole to hit
– Good ball security. Carries it high and tight and hangs on in traffic. Has zero fumbles in his collegiate career
– Very tough player who runs behind his pads and plays bigger than his listed 5-foot-10 height
Areas to improve:
– Extremely limited impact as a pass catcher. Only 7 catches for 39 yards across his first two seasons
– Does not have the long speed to be a legitimate home run threat of throw off pursuit angles
– Must prove his durability to increase his stock. With his bruising style, missing multiple games each season does not bode well for his future injury-wise
– While he’s very stout as a pass blocker, he tends to lunge and can get out of position and let blitzers run free when he does so
– Runs his routes with urgency, but they’re not sharp or deceptive to help create separation
– (2019) Missed three games due to a non-contact foot injury
– (2018) Missed three games with an undisclosed lower body injury
Ibrahim projects to enter the NFL as a running back committee member who does his damage on first and second down. His blend of contact balance, elusiveness and patience should make him a fit for either zone or power based schemes, and he could be an ideal short yardage back at the next level due to his ability to push the pile with constant leg drive. Without showing any receiving impact to this point, Ibrahim’s stock will be a limited and he’ll have to prove his third down ability before he can lead a running back committee or become a fully-fledged starter. Expect him to be an early Day 3 selection, with the chance to jump into the Day 2 conversation if he improves as a pass catcher.
What to watch in 2020:
If Minnesota is able to play in 2020, look for Ibrahim to become a well-known name nationally once he takes the starting reigns. He’s the type of back who wears on opposing defenses as the game goes along, and his featured performances back that up. The most important development for his game is clearly his third down viability. If Ibrahim can prove himself as a pass catcher, he has starting running back potential at the next level.