Our rookie scouting reports combine film and analytics to provide the best possible predictions for player performance. With the 2023 NFL Draft inching closer, let’s take a look at the scouting report for North Dakota State FB Hunter Luepke.
Hunter Luepke NFL Draft Profile
- Position: Fullback
- School: North Dakota State
- Year: Redshirt Senior
Luepke was a zero-star recruit out of Spencer High School in Spencer, Wisconsin. After high school, he chose to play college football at North Dakota State.
Luepke redshirted his entire freshman season, preserving an extra year of eligibility. He got into his first game action as a redshirt freshman in 2019. Luepke played 14 games, carrying the ball five times for 43 yards and a touchdown. He also caught 11 passes for 96 yards and a score.
As a redshirt sophomore, COVID limited him to just six games. However, he amassed 84 carries for 458 yards and six touchdowns while adding in four receptions for 37 yards and another TD.
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Luepke’s usage decreased in his redshirt junior year. In 13 games, he carried the ball 87 times for 543 yards and eight touchdowns while catching nine passes for 165 yards and three scores.
As a redshirt senior, Luepke played 10 games. He ran it 98 times for 621 yards and nine TDs, with 14 catches for 196 yards and four more TDs through the air.
Overall, Luepke finished his four seasons at North Dakota State with 43 games played, 274 carries, 1,665 yards, and 24 touchdowns on the ground. Through the air, he hauled in 38 receptions for 494 yards and nine TDs.
Hunter Luepke Scouting Report
Strengths: Large, powerful short-yardage ball carrier who projects to fullback on Sundays. Runs with excellent balance, power, and displays quickness as well as footwork in a short area. Strong, keeps his feet moving, and rarely gets brought down by a single defender. Has a burst through the hole, picks up a lot of yardage off initial contact, and moves the pile.
Solid athlete who plays tough, smart football. Tracks the pass in the air, extends his hands, and makes the difficult reception in contorted positions. Shows outstanding eye/hand coordination as a pass catcher. Displays outstanding vision as both a runner and blocker. Squares into oncoming pass rushers, moves them from their angles of attack, and does a great job picking up the blitz.
Weaknesses: More of a downhill ball carrier and struggles trying to cut back against the grain. Occasionally lets the pass get inside him and doesn’t always catch the ball cleanly with his hands. Suffered a late-season shoulder injury in 2022.
Overall: Luepke is a talented and versatile RB/FB who is effective in all three facets of the position. He’s a throwback West Coast fullback who would be effective as a pass catcher out of the backfield, blocker, or short-yardage ball carrier. Luepke must show no ill effects from his shoulder injury late last season and should receive late-round consideration.
Hunter Luepke Combine Measurements and Results
- Height: 6’1 1/2″
- Weight: 230 pounds
- Arm Size: 31 1/2″
- Hand Size: 9 5/8″
- Bench Press: N/A
- 40-Yard Dash: 4.56 (pro day)
North Dakota State FB Hunter Luepke Current Draft Projection
On Tony Pauline’s Big Board, Luepke ranked 250th overall and is projected to be drafted in the seventh round. With a 3.28 grade, he is Pauline’s top-ranked FB in this class.
Bear in mind, fullback is a bit of an antiquated position, with very few NFL teams ever rostering one. There are only six prospects listed at fullback in the 2023 NFL Draft.
College production is the most reliable predictor of NFL success. Luepke was quite productive at North Dakota State, especially for a fullback. Of course, he was playing against FCS competition. However, North Dakota State has produced NFL players before and is widely considered to be the best FCS program.
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As with any Day 3 pick, Luepke is more likely to fizzle out than not. But the man is quite athletic and displayed skills as a runner, receiver, and blocker. While he has no clear role on an NFL team, he has plenty of raw ability. There is definitely enough here for NFL teams to work with, should they choose to.
With a seventh-round projection, there’s no guarantee Lupeke gets drafted. With that said, it would be a surprise if no team was willing to give him a shot, either late Day 3 or as a UDFA.
Luepke would do well to get an opportunity to prove he belongs on an NFL team. There’s also the possibility of him converting to tight end in an effort to secure a more reliable role.
While Luepke is not the NFL’s next superstar, he could end up having a sustained career as one of the last guys on a roster.
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