A lot of RBs have been run through Kubiak/Gibbs' zone blocking system. Not all of them have been successful. Looking at Steve Slaton, is he more like Quinton Griffin, Tatum Bell or Clinton Portis?
His production was spotty. He had the physical ability to excel, but couldn't put it together. His career reminds me of Wali Lundy.
He had a couple of solid years behind Denver's line. He could hit the home run. I figure he's about the median of the production you can expect from a zone blocking RB.
He defined what it was to be an RB in the zone blocking scheme, with two years of back-to-back 1500 yd seasons. He'd still probably be dominating as a Bronco if Denver didn't need CB help.
One of New Era Scouting's impact rookies . Steve Slaton is a speedy, elusive back that can provide the Texans with that spark plug. Slaton is elusive, has incredible acceleration, and excellent straight line speed. He’s a perfect fit in Kubiak’s zone blocking scheme that requires quick, one-cut-and-go runners. With the Texans already having legitimate weapons on the outside, including all-pro receiver Andre Johnson, they have found the lighting to their thunder. Brown, Slaton, and a healthy Green compose a Texan’s backfield that is versatile: they can hit the homerun, but also have the ability to churn out the tough yards.
So how does Steve Slaton run?
Steve seems to be able to get in and out of his cuts easily. He seems to have good change of direction, and he should have no problem getting to cutback lanes.
From what I understand about zone blocking, there are no pre-defined holes for the RB to go through. Instead, he takes a step and finds a crease to run through. Slaton looks like he has the agility to get to the crease and the power to go through it.
Looking at this picture, I can see why Slaton has fumbled a few times in OTAs. I'm not too worried about it though. Fumbling is one of Kubiak's pet peeves; I'm sure he'll drill it out of Slaton before he takes the field in the regular season.
So back to the question I posed earlier: Where does Slaton fit when compared to Griffin, Bell and Portis? Personally, I think he's somewhere around Bell right now. He carried the load at West Virginia for a time and had solid production. He's got the potential to be like Portis if he can win the starting job from Green and Brown. Reading SOLIS' piece on Slaton, you really get the idea that he can be a great back here in Houston.