2020 NFL Draft Profile: Utah State RB Gerold Bright
Will Bright be the next Utah State running back to be selected?
Can the scrappy converted RB make it to the league?
Gerold Bright was nothing if not infectiously upbeat and consistent in his time with the Utah State Aggies.
After redshirting the 2015 season, Bright played wide receiver and had mixed success. He clearly showed explosive potential in his limited touches and toughness in his stride. Late in the 2017 season, he changed over to being a running back full time and provided juice to a then-inconsistent offense.
The 2018 season is when Bright solidified his presence as a playmaker. In tandem with his rushing partner Darwin Thompson, now with the Kansas City Chiefs, Bright churned out 888 yards and 10 touchdowns on 141 carries. His strong production helped keep Thompson (and Bright himself) fresh so he could eclipse the 1,000-yard mark that year. Though he may not have been the feature back like Thompson, Bright’s contributions to USU’s offense cannot be understated as he was a key part of the 2018 team’s success.
In 2019, Bright put together another strong campaign by rushing for 921 yards and nine touchdowns on 182 carries. Though the numbers weren’t quite as good as 2018, Bright nonetheless put the team on his shoulders at different times and helped grind out some close games. His best effort undoubtedly came against Colorado State where he seemed nigh unstoppable. Had Jaylen Warren been able to stay consistently healthy, Bright may have been able to hit 1,000 yards for the year.
With the right mindset and a big smile, Bright may yet convince an NFL team to take a chance on him, whether he gets drafted late or not.
Height – 5′ 9″
Weight – 187 pounds
Wingspan – 71 7/8″
Arm Length – 29 1/2″
Hand Size – 9 1/8″
40-Yard Dash – 4.52 seconds
Bright has consistent production and strength in his runs. He can move the pile when needed and he rarely makes mistakes. He also has versatility as a pass catcher, which may widen his appeal to an NFL team looking to add an athlete to their roster. Being unselfish and having a great attitude are excellent attributes to have heading into the NFL Draft.
Bright showed a bad habit in 2019 of trying to make something out of nothing. Regardless of what the defense gave him, he would often try and run around tacklers ran than through them, where he had considerably more success. This leads to his occasional mistakes and makes him predictable to opposing defenses, especially if the offensive line doesn’t play up to its potential.
With his skill set, Bright could very well end up as a seventh-round pick or possibly as a high priority free agent. His good hands make him valuable as a pass catcher if he can consistently produce. Most draft sites have him going undrafted, which isn’t an unreasonable prediction based off of his track record. He’s a bit smaller than prototypical NFL backs. He also doesn’t have the same star power and production of his former teammate Darwin Thompson.
Bright had an outspoken desire to win during his Aggie career. He’ll have to grind and stay patient the same way to get a shot in a rookie camp or tryout.