2021 NFL Draft
Arkansas RB Rakeem Boyd Details His Rocky Road to the NFL
An NFL prospect’s pro day is a symbol that they are one step closer to achieving their lifelong dream of playing in the NFL. If they are there, they have sacrificed and worked hard to even be considered a prospect. However, for some guys, the pro day is the culmination of just more than that. Arkansas RB Rakeem Boyd has had a topsy-turvy college football career. A star on the popular Netflix show ‘Last Chance U’, Boyd started his career at Texas A&M before he was booted from the program due to academic issues.
“After all I’ve been through at Arkansas, A&M, JUCO … it’s a blessing to be able to do what I love,” Boyd said.
Boyd’s exit from Texas A&M was one that was messy for him. It took its toll on the young, promising running back who was a Redshirt Freshman at the time.
“The day I got kicked out of A&M, I had a training session that day for about 2 hours, 3 hours, and I was just crying,” Boyd said.
Despite his exit from Texas A&M, Boyd worked hard at Independence Community College and earned himself a scholarship to Arkansas, where Boyd would rack up over 1000 yards in his Junior season. Boyd’s success story on Last Chance U is one of his prideful moments.
“People will see me and say, you really make me want to go achieve my goals,” Boyd said. “It really makes people go out and do things they never thought of doing.”
As far as the testing day goes for his pro day, Boyd felt good overall about what he put out in front of scouts.
“The only thing I struggled with today was broad jump,” Boyd said. “Everything else was really smooth.”
Boyd noted that he worked extensively as a receiver today, both as a simple check down option and out of the slot. And while a down Senior season might catch eyes, Boyd noted a few injuries hampered him. Boyd suffered from both rotator cuff and labrum injuries in his shoulder before the season even started. In Week 2 against Mississippi State, he suffered a bone bruise and never felt fully recovered.
The New Orleans product is all over the place on draft boards, but it is likely that Boyd is viewed as a Late Day 3 pick at this time. Thus far in the process, Boyd has not had any communication with the Steelers.