PFF Rankings: RB Kenneth Gainwell sits in top-3 amongst all NFL rookies
Just six weeks into the NFL season, rookie players have already started to make their mark on the league.
Ja’Marr Chase now has the second-most receiving yards through six games in NFL history, rookie tackle Rashawn Slater hadn’t given up a sack all year up until yesterday, and Micah Parsons is wreaking havoc on defense for the Dallas Cowboys.
The 2021 draft class has been nothing short of spectacular early on and the Eagles have some promising players of their own. Pro Football Focus recently released their top-graded rookies through the first five weeks of the season, with the Eagles 5th-round pick sitting firmly in the top-3:
PFF overall grade: 80.1
“Gainwell has certainly lived up to his pre-draft billing as the best receiving back in this rookie class. He’s caught 14-of-18 targets for 122 yards through five games. He’s even been flexed wide or in the slot on 16 of his 63 pass routes.“
Kenneth Gainwell is currently 10th amongst all rookies in all-purpose yards.— Victor Williams (@ThePhillyPod) October 7, 2021
149 players were drafted ahead of him. pic.twitter.com/R2DYX9LznP
The only two players ranked ahead of Gainwell were LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah of Cleveland and Kansas City center Creed Humphrey. Drafted out of the University of Memphis after opting out of the 2020 season, Gainwell has carved out a consistent role on the Eagles’ offense.
“My preparation during the week is on going in and getting in whenever my name is called and being ready,” Gainwell said via the Cherry Hill Courier-Post. “Once they know they put me in I feel like I can go to work.”
Nick Sirianni’s uninspiring playcalling has done little to help the run-game in Philadelphia, but Gainwell’s pass-catching ability allows him to continue to see the field. He and Miles Sanders can be a productive, long-term tandem if given the chance.
Mandatory Credit: AP Photo | Terrance Williams