Phillip Lindsay: Undrafted to Breakout Star

Being an undrafted free agent in the NFL is hard. First, after going undrafted, you have to hope a team signs you. Then after that, you’ll likely be used as a backup or practice squad player in the limited time you have to prove yourself if you even make the roster.

Well, against all odds, there is an undrafted free agent that has went on to become a total star and very few people have even taken notice.

Denver Broncos rookie running back Phillip Lindsay is just sitting back waiting for fans to notice him.

Lindsay attended the University of Colorado and went undrafted and was signed by his hometown team, the Broncos. The 5’8″ 190-pound back has emerged as a lead back ahead of third round pick, Royce Freeman.

The former Colorado star has two major qualities that are great to have for an NFL running back. Not only is he very shifty and can change direction on a dime, but he also runs with power that isn’t expected from a guy at his size.

Watching Lindsay run is like watching a bulldozer. He’s so small but he runs so hard and can take defenders down in spite of his size. On top of that, if he doesn’t take tacklers down by plowing through them, he uses his speed and shiftiness to make them miss. A lot of backs, his size, rely on their size and speed to make plays but Lindsay is able to do things a guy with his frame shouldn’t be able to do and that’s what makes him special.

Lindsay is used to being the underdog. He’s used to it so it wasn’t a surprise when the Broncos signed him and he faced the uphill battle of beating out Freeman and former fourth round pick Devontae Booker.

“I always bring a chip on my shoulder, not because I’m mad but because I know what I have to do.” Lindsay said in an interview with the Associated Press.

And Lindsay took that chip on his shoulder and turned it into 93 rushing attempts for 531 yards (5.7 per carry) and three touchdowns. In addition, he is a viable pass-catching option out of the backfield. He has  as well as 18 receptions on 23 targets so far this season for 136 yards and one receiving touchdown.

Lindsay was called by multiple teams after the draft to sign with them but no one wanted to draft him. It could be a result of the school he attended flying under the radar or maybe that his frame isn’t an ideal size in the eyes of NFL coaches.

Regardless, Lindsay is now top 15 in the NFL in rushing yards through eight games. It is safe to say that as an undrafted free agent, the Broncos found a diamond in the rough.

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