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2021 NFL Draft: Michael Carter Player Profile

Michael Carter NFL Draft

Michael Carter 2021 NFL Draft Overview

Position: Running Back
Height: 5’8”
Weight: 201 Lbs
School: North Carolina

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Michael Carter 2021 NFL Draft Profile

Carter is one of two running backs that emerged in Chapel Hill North Carolina last season. Although teammate Javonte Williams is getting more hype, Carter is a prospect that deserves some attention too. Carter was a four-star prospect out of  Navarre High School in Florida, where he posted 2,546 yards and 45 touchdowns as a senior. This propelled him into his choice of some upper-level power five schools, he eventually landed in Chapel Hill.
Carter’s dynamic abilities were on display right out of the gate. As a freshman, he led the North Carolina Tar Heels in rushing touchdowns with eight. He continued to build a solid college resume in his 2019 season, he broke the 1000 yard mark and had five total touchdowns. He followed up an impressive junior season by posting 1245 rushing yards and nine touchdowns in his senior year. Carter displayed a dynamic running presence and pass-catching abilities throughout his career at North Carolina. Even in a committee, he managed to put up great numbers and produce at a high clip.
In a weak running back class, Carter has a chance to get drafted higher than some would think. In today’s NFL, pass-catching backs with explosiveness are a hot commodity and this will raise his draft stock significantly. While he has some upside, the concerns with him are about size and translation of his physical play to the NFL.


  • Ball Security, no fumbles in the past two seasons;
  • Bend and agility;
  • Finishes plays with toughness;
  • Has ability to return kicks if needed;
  • Can catch passes out of the backfield.


  • Vision could use improvement;
  • Top-end speed isn’t above average;
  • Gets taken down pretty easily on first contact;
  • Can pass protect, but needs improvement;
  • Likely better suited in a committee, won’t be a lead back in NFL.

NFL Comparison: Wendell Smallwood

Teams With Need at Position: Atlanta Falcons, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets.

Projection: Fifth Round

Bottom Line on Michael Carter

Michael Carter may never be a lead back in the NFL, however in today’s version of the game that doesn’t matter much. Most teams have two or three backs that play a role on the team, and those players are important to the roster. If Carter can niche out a role as a third-down back for a team, he could have a very successful NFL career. However, his ability to earn that third-down role will entirely depend on his ability to improve as a pass blocker. He’s already a good receiver, but he won’t see the field on third down if the coaching staff believes he’ll get the quarterback killed.

A lot of the projections on him are going to depend on the landing spot and he should find a team around round five or so come draft day. If he lands in a good spot, his projection is to be a third-down back for multiple years, something many teams are searching for in 2021.

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