Draft 2021 – Pick #7: Jake Funk, RB, Maryland

Player Bio
Funk struggled with injuries at Maryland, but came through as a senior to garner third-team All-Big Ten honors. He ran for 516 yards and three touchdowns on 60 carries (8.6 per) and caught 10 passes for 68 yards (6.8 per) and another score in five games. Funk originally signed with his home-state school after being named the 2015 Maryland Gatorade Player of the Year at Damascus High School in Gaithersburg. He played in all 13 games as a true freshman reserve (29-136-4.7, one TD rushing; 7-42-6.0, one receiving TD; 3-49-16.3 on kick returns) and logged 12 more games as a sophomore backup (27-145-5.4, four TDs rushing; 1-4-4.0, one TD receiving; 9-166-18.4 on kick returns). Funk only played — and minimally produced — in three games the following fall because he struggled with a wrist injury and then tore his left ACL. He played in three games in 2019 (17-173-10.2, two TDs rushing; 4-16-4.0 receiving; 1-22-22.0 kick returns), as well, again tearing his left ACL. — by Chad Reuter

Draft Projection
Round 7/PFA
NFL Comparison
Mike Boone

Funk’s tape as a running back is somewhat average, but his high-level testing (SEE: 40 in the 4.4s, 38-inch vertical leap, 10-foot-2 broad jump) and talent as a special teams cover demon make him worthy of consideration. He’s well-built and plays with pretty good power when the ball is in his hands. He has shifty traits and measurables, but his running style is a little more straightforward. He has more build-up speed than instant burst, which might make him a better off-tackle and outside runner (in plays where he can have a runway to take off). His special teams prowess will be strongly considered, but he also appears to have a potential future as a third-down option. Two ACL tears in the same knee will cause hesitance for some teams, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see him make a roster.

  • Explosive testing at Maryland pro day opened some eyes.
  • Racked up impressive tackle totals on coverage teams.
  • Muscular with dense trunk.
  • Bends and drives through contact to fall forward.
  • Build-up speed can pull away from defenders.
  • Plus separation burst out of routes.
  • Displays good catch focus.
  • Suffered two torn ACL injuries on the same knee (2018 and ’19).
  • Needs to improve pass-protection technique.
  • Wiggle after the catch is just average.
  • Not as much burst through the line as expected.
  • Inconsistent access to sudden-cut quickness along interior.
  • Would like to see better feel for run-lane development.
  • Not overly creative in gaining his own yardage.
Sources Tell Us
“We call him ‘Funky’ in the building. He’s got some natural ability and has a future playing on special teams if teams are OK with the injuries in his background.” — Pro personnel director for NFL team
By Lance Zierlein
NFL Analyst

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