BROCK AND SALK

Brock’s Seahawks Draft Profile: Kansas State RB Deuce Vaughn

Mar 28, 2023, 12:52 PM | Updated: Apr 6, 2023, 2:22 pm

Seahawks draft Deuce Vaughn...

Running back Deuce Vaughn of the Kansas State Wildcats on Dec. 3, 2022. (Tim Heitman/Getty Images)

(Tim Heitman/Getty Images)

We’re less than a month from the 2023 NFL Draft, which will be massive for a Seahawks team that has two picks in each of the first two rounds.

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On Tuesday’s edition of Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk, former NFL quarterback Brock Huard, who also calls college football games for FOX Sports, kicked off his draft profiles series (which will air every day leading up to the NFL Draft).

While the Seahawks have four picks in the first two rounds, Huard’s first profile focused on a player he’d love to see land in Seattle on the third day of the NFL Draft.

“It’s not necessarily a position of need, though with Rashaad Penny leaving, it is. With this draft, there is a need (at running back),” Huard said. “… Deuce Vaughn, little running back at Kansas State. He’s the smallest man in this draft. He is a petite tiny little thing at 5 foot 5, 179 pounds. Seriously.”

Vaughn may be a smaller player, but he was a star in college – a unanimous All-American in 2021, a consensus All-American in 2022 and three-time All-Big 12 selection.

Huard called six Kansas State games over the last three years for FOX, and every time he saw the Wildcats, Vaughn delivered.

“His production was off the charts. Multiple All-American, multiple all-conference player there,” he said. “And as you know, what I love as much as anything with a prospect … elevate the people around you. And if you can elevate your program to places it’s not been before and you are the epicenter of it, I want that guy on my team. And he was the epicenter of turning Kansas State into Big 12 champions last year. It was on his little shoulders.”

Vaughn was a multi-purpose weapon for Kansas State in his career, rushing 651 times for 3,605 yards (5.5 yards per carry) and 34 touchdowns while also catching 116 passes for 1,280 yards and nine scores over the last three years.

“He ran it, he caught it … He would be, to me, an ideal sixth-round pick,” Huard said.

Huard thinks Vaughn’s skillset would translate well to the NFL level as a special teams weapon in the return game.

“I think this team needs a punt returner and kick returner. I don’t need to see DeeJay Dallas doing that anymore,” Huard said. “Give me a guy that is a little bit like the human joystick. Give me a guy that in the open field doesn’t get tackled.”

Huard said an easy comparison to make for Vaughn is a former Kansas State running back, Darren Sproles, who played 15 seasons in the NFL and had a very nice career as a dual-threat running back as well as a kick returner.

Kansas State’s pro day is this Friday, and Huard will be keeping a close eye on Vaughn’s numbers there.

Vaughn did some workouts at the NFL combine, where he benched 225 pounds 17 times and posted a 33.5-inch vertical leap, but he didn’t run the 40-yard dash.

“Darren Sproles ran 4.49 (seconds) at the NFL Combine, and it’s why people were comfortable giving him a shot,” Huard said. “Deuce has got to run well on Friday … Friday will be K-State’s pro day, and I’m gonna guess there will be a fairly large Seahawks contingent there, and not just for him.”

“If Deuce Vaughn’s name is called in the sixth round, sign me up,” Huard later added. “Sign me up because he will fight for a spot on this roster, he will fight and be a difference-maker in special teams, and I love guys that change the trajectory of their program.”

Listen to Huard’s full profile of Vaughn in the podcast below.

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