By drafting Qadree Ollison in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons have ensured that they will have depth and talent at the running back position.
Qadree Ollison had a great career at the University of Pittsburgh. He became the starter during his freshman year due to James Conner‘s cancer treatment. In 2016 he backed up Conner. He became the full-time starter again for Pitt during his senior year and finished with impressive numbers that caught the attention of the Atlanta Falcons.
By the end of the 2018 season, Ollison had accumulated 1,213 yards on 194 carries. He finished the season with 11 touchdowns and played in every game. He had a very impressive 97-yard touchdown run against the Virginia Tech Hokies that saw him stiff arm a Tech defender to the ground on route for the touchdown.
He finished his career at Pitt with 2,859 yards on 529 carries. He also showed his receiving ability, finishing his career with three receiving touchdowns and 375 yards on 50 receptions.
Ollison’s versatility is exactly what the Falcons need with Tevin Coleman moving on to the San Francisco 49ers. He showed throughout his career that, when given the opportunity, he has the talent to be an every down back.
Given Devonta Freeman‘s injuries over the last two seasons, this pick makes sense for the Atlanta Falcons. While Freeman is a great back, he has had trouble staying on the field. Ollison is durable and, although he is not the most athletic, he is a big body that will add power and depth to the position.
Ollison will most likely not be the starting running back, unless both Ito Smith and Freeman fall to injury. Ollison will most likely be a third down back given his size. He could also be a receiving option out of the back field. Ollison was a great pick for the Atlanta Falcons and he will have a productive rookie season.