A chat with draft’s top RB Dan Leberfeld

Q)What sets you apart?

Ezekiel Elliott – Ohio State RB: I think the thing that sets me apart is my versatility. I’m a guy that can play three downs. You don’t have to take me off the field.
I value blocking more than anything. I obviously love to run the ball and I think I have great hands out of the backfield.

Q)Who’s the running back that you looked up to growing up and would like to emulate?

Elliott: Marshall Faulk was my guy growing up and that’s who I always emulated my game after. He’s been a mentor to me. We have the same agent.
He’s been a big help to me in this process.

Q)Your blocking, when did you first take that on with enthusiasm. How did you develop that?

Elliott: When I first started playing football I was a fullback. My first job was to block. When I first got to Ohio State I realized I wasn’t going to be the biggest or fastest guy, I was only 17 playing with a bunch of 22- and 21-year old guys, so I was trying to find something that would set me apart.
And that day I realized it was just effort. Not everyone is willing to go out there and play with a lot of effort. And blocking is another thing that
running backs aren’t really willing to do. That’s a part of my game. I really made it important to me to become very good at.

Q)Not a lot of first-round running backs, why are you worthy?

Elliott: I think I’m a guy who’s going to work and work hard from day one and I think I’m a guy who brings a lot of versatility to the position.
I’m a guy who can play all three downs and I think excel in all areas of the game.

Q)A lot of pressure playing at a Ohio State. Did that help prepare you for the NFL scrutiny?

Elliott: I think it did. I think it’s proof to our training from Ohio State. When you go to a place like Ohio State with all that competition, it prepares you for the next level.