Player Profile #86 – CB Rashad Carmichael

Virginia Tech has become the cradle of defensive backs for the NFL over the last decade and there’s another one ready to join the league in Rashad Carmichael.

Coming before him were Ike Charlton, DeAngelo Hall, Eric Green, Jimmy Williams, Macho Harris, Aaron Rouse, Vincent Fuller and the Chiefs three-year starter Brandon Flowers. All were drafted as defensive backs out of the Frank Beamer’s program at Tech.

In fact, it was Flowers that had a huge impact on Carmichael – telling him that if he wanted to make it in the NFL, he was going to have to spend more time looking at tape. The next day, Carmichael cancelled his cable TV and began instead to watch game tape, going back all the way to the early 2000s.

Now, Carmichael has a chance to join the list of Hokies DB drafted by the NFL.

Here’s his story.

FAMILY AFFAIRS

Rashad Bernard Carmichael

Born – September 9, 1988 in Laurinburg, N.C.

Family – Parents were Bernard and Mae Carmichael. Bernard spent time in the Air Force, while Mae and three sons lived in the Carolinas, including Fayetteville, N.C. and Dillon, S.C. In July 2008, Bernard died of a heart attack at Walter Reed Hospital. He was just 40 years old. Rashad was the oldest of the three sons; younger brothers are Nygee and Shaikh Carmichael. Nygee Carmichael is a sophomore running back at Towson State University.

When Rashad was young, his father gave him the nickname “Rock.”

BODY OF WORK

  • Height – 5-feet, 9¾ inches.
  • Weight – 192 pounds.
  • Arm – 31¾ inches.
  • Hand – 9 inches.
  • 40-yard dash – 4.53 seconds (4.43 and 4.45 on Pro Day).
  • 20-yard dash – 2.56 seconds (2.54).
  • 10-yard dash – 1.54 seconds (1.52).
  • Bench press – 13 repetitions at 225 pounds.
  • Vertical jump – 31 inches (33 inches).
  • Broad jump – 9-feet, 8 inches (10-feet, 1 inch).

HIGH SCHOOL

Carmichael graduated with the Class of 2006 from Gwynn Park High School in Brandywine, Maryland. It’s part of the Prince George’s County Public Schools.

He was a three-year football letterman for the Yellow Jackets and head coach Danny Hayes, playing both running back and defensive back. Over his time there, he ran for 1,785 yards and 19 TDs with 12 interceptions and 115 tackles, with several All-Conference and All-Region designations.

In his senior season, he was one of the team leaders that led Gwynn Park to a Maryland 3A state championship with a 20-14 victory in double overtime.

He also ran track at Gwynn Park, putting up best times of 10.55 seconds in the 100 meters and 21 seconds in the 200 meters. He was honored in all three of his varsity seasons with a scholar-athlete designation.

FOOTBALL

2005 – In the state championship season, he ran for more than 800 yards and 11 TDs, while catching 15 passes for 109 yards. Carmichael added three INTs and 30 tackles. He played only seven games that season, due to a torn knee cartilage, but he returned in time for the state playoffs.

2004 – He contributed five INTs as junior.

RECRUITING

Carmichael received very little interest from recruiters coming out of Gwynn Park. Essentially, he recruited Virginia Tech, tagging along with teammate Phil Taylor to the Hokies summer camp in 2005. That’s where Frank Beamer and his coaching staff discovered a small but very fast prospect. He committed to a scholarship in July ’05. Eventually, Georgia, Marshall, Maryland and Virginia showed interest.

COLLEGE

 Carmichael received a bachelor’s degree in human development in May 2010.

Over his four seasons on the field for Virginia Tech, he missed only one game; that came in 2009 against Virginia because of an ankle injury suffered the week before. That’s 54 of 55 games played, and Carmichael was a starter for the last two seasons.

He finished with 115 total tackles, 12 interceptions, and two that he returned for touchdowns.

2010 – Played in 13 games, with 12 starts, he had 40 total tackles and four INTs. Against East Carolina he returned one of those picks 68 yards for a score.

2009 – Carmichael started all 13 games and played the second most plays on the Tech defense with 737. He finished with 55 tackles and six INTs, including a TD return. He was voted the team’s top DB.

2008 – Appearing in all 14 games, he made his first start, opening against East Carolina. During off-season testing, he was clocked in 4.26 seconds in the 40-yard dash. He finished with 12 total tackles.

2007 – In the season opener, he was a first-team member of the punt team. He finished the year with eight tackles. In off-season testing he ran 4.37 seconds in the 40.

2006 – Worked on the scout team all season as he sat out his redshirt season. He was the fastest incoming freshmen with a time of 4.4 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

 Year

 

G

 

S

 

Tk.

 

TFL

 

Sks

 

QBH

 

INT

TD

Ret.

 

PBU

2010

13

12

40

1.5

0

0

4

1

7

2009

13

13

55

4

1

6

6

1

6

2008

14

1

12

0

0

0

0

0

2

2007

14

0

8

1

0

0

0

0

1

2006

x

x

x

x

x

x

x

x

x

Total

54

26

115

6.5

1

6

10

2

16

EVALUATION FOR PRO FOOTBALL

Strengths – Top of the line speed, with a burst and good quickness out of his stance and laterally. Fluid hips that allow him to make the transition between the back pedal and the run. Smart, student of the game who spends hours watching tape of himself and others. He’s equally adept at playing both man-to-man coverage and zone. Although he’s on the small side, he’s shown great durability and he’s not afraid of contact; aggressive in his approach to the game. Made his mark early at VT by his work on the special teams, in coverage and blocking.

Weaknesses – Lack of good height and weight works against him. He’s not very strong and can get pushed around. Despite his aggressive approach he’s not very interested in run support; he won’t turn down tackles, but he doesn’t seek them out either. Carmichael has trouble sometimes locating the ball in the air because he runs with his back to the passer, thus negating his speed as he’s forced to react late by watching his receivers. Poor tackler, who doesn’t keep his head up and misses too many

Analysis – There’s a good upside for this young man in the NFL. First, there’s the speed and quickness that he’s displayed. Although he wasn’t used much at Virginia Tech as a blitzer, he could be used like Javier Arenas in that area. He’s probably best suited playing in zone coverage; although there’s no doubt he can play man-to-man.

WHAT SCOUTS HAVE TO SAY

From an AFC scout – “I think he’s a carbon-copy of Brandon Flowers. He’s the same size, has the same speed and athletic ability. Right now, he’s more advanced mentally than Flowers was coming into the league. He’s also better going for the ball than Flowers. He will make some plays.”

From an NFC scout – “Tough kid, with a good personality plus love for the game and he’s really dedicated and determined. It makes up for his lack of size.”

WHAT HE HAS TO SAY

“I’m an aggressive player. That’s why I play corner. I feel like this isn’t flag football. You’re going to get touched and you’re going to get hit. Sometimes you’re going to get a flag or a call, sometimes not. The key, though, is to keep playing. It’s like I was telling our guys: just keep playing.”

“Technique, fundamentals and work ethic — those are the keys that make you successful. That’s what you need to be successful, play in and play out. You have to work hard every day. Then you have to have your fundamentals and technique before you can start to make plays.”

“I tell the guys to have a little fun. It’s the same thing we used to do in the yard outside playing with your friends. It’s still a game but just with more people watching. You can’t let it get away from the fun part. You still have to go out there and have fun, but you want to put it all together so you are prepared.”

WHAT OTHERS HAVE TO SAY

Former teammate and now Steelers LB Jason Worilds -”He’s got to be one of the most explosive athletes in the country. Plus, he’s an extremely hard worker, an extremely humble guy, and he brings a lunch pail attitude to the table every day.”

DOES HE FIT WITH THE CHIEFS?

Carmichael should fit just fine with the concept of the “right 53.” While he may not hit all the prime height and weight numbers, he more than makes up with his mind, heart and guts. He’s talented, dedicated and driven and has shown signs of being mature beyond his years. Cornerback is not a big need for the Chiefs, so it’s doubtful that Carmichael will be targeted by them. But if they get a chance to add him they shouldn’t think twice.


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