Welcome DBZ readers, I am doing a breakdown of prospects that will be available in the 2017 NFL Draft. We are now just 1 day away from the big dance and finding out who will be our new players this year. Below are breakdowns on some tight end prospects that could interest Denver.
TE, Senior, South Alabama
Gerald Everett is a former high school basketball player that turned his focus to football. He bounced around from Hutchinson Community College, to Alabama-Birmingham, and finally to South Alabama. In his career Everett recorded 107 receptions for 1,584 yards, and 13 touchdowns while averaging 14.8 yards per catch.
HT- 6’3″ WT- 239lbs
Arm Length- 33″ Hand Size- 8 1/2″
40 Yard- 4.62 secs
Bench- 22 reps
3 Cone- 6.99 secs
Everett possesses traits you’d most likely find in a big wide receiver. He is a mismatch for linebackers and safeties will most likely have to be covered by a corner. He has long arms which gives him a big catch radius that most tight ends don’t have. When Everett is blocking he seems to be angry while doing it and does a great job on screens. He is an all around player that can block, pick apart the middle of the field, and also be a vertical threat downfield.
Everett’s biggest issue is he needs to work on perfecting his routes. He tends to round off his routes and needs to work on double moves. Everett only has 8 1/2″ hands which could make it more difficult to reel in passes as well as block. Plays off balance on his routes and might struggle early on if he is bumped off his route.
Everett possesses all the traits you’d want in a tight end, he can stretch the field vertically or across the middle and he’s a willing blocker and a decent blocker already. Everett should see time early on in his career with a good chance of becoming a starter and possibly becoming a scoring threat from any distance.
Senior, TE, Virginia Tech
Bucky Hodges was a 3 year starter at tight end for Virginia Tech. He is a former quarterback who converted over to tight end. Hodges in his 3 seasons recorded 133 receptions for 1,747 yards, 20 touchdowns and averaged 13.1 yards per reception. Hodges was also a 3 time All ACC player in all 3 of his seasons while at Virginia Tech.
HT- 6’6″ WT- 257lbs
Arm Length- 32 1/2″ Hand Size- 10 1/8″
40 Yard- 4.57 secs
Bench- 18 reps
Hodges will be a mismatch for linebackers and most safeties as he is an athletic tight end who can make plays at any level of the field. He has a nice catch radius combined with his ability to break up coverage using his hands. He will need attention in the red zone as he has big play potential inside the 20. He has the athleticism to line up wide or with a hand in the dirt and still make plays as well as being a willing blocker.
Hodges could struggle with press coverage. He needs to put more effort into his route running as he runs soft at times. He needs to get better as a blocker but the willingness is there, He could also afford to hit the juggs machine as he tends to make body catches or double catches instead of clean catches.
Bucky Hodges is the definition of a tight end that has big scoring potential. He will mostly make his production happen inside the 20 rather than being a big play threat. He needs to work on routes as well as his inline blocking but overall Hodges should be an intriguing option for most teams and has the potential to be a starter early.
Senior, TE, Clemson
HT- 6’5″ WT- 258lbs
Arm Length- 33 1/2″ Hand Size- 10 3/8″
Bench- 18 reps
3 Cone- 7.12 secs
20 Yard- 4.33 secs
Leggett is a reliable pass catching tight end who can make just about every type of catch and only had 2 drops over his final 2 seasons. He can threaten defenses deep down the field especially on seam routes. He has made some big time catches in crunch time situations against several top teams in college. Leggett can also line up in the slot or out wide.
Leggett has been tabbed as a player who lacks effort and passion for the game which will bring up red flags for teams. He struggles to hold blocks and isn’t much of a willing blocker so overall he isn’t much of a reliable blocker. He needs to work on routes as he runs stiff and if he gets knocked off his routes early struggles to get back on track.
Leggett has the potential to be a scoring tight end but not much else. He needs to work on his routes as well as putting more effort into the game overall. He won’t be a reliable blocker and although he has the size of a TE he doesn’t have the motor of one.
Senior, TE, Ashland
Adam Shaeen is a former basketball that transferred to Ashland to play football. He is a 2 time AFCA All American and a first team All Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference pick. Shaheen recorded 129 receptions for 1,755 yards, 26 touchdowns, and 13.7 yards per catch.
HT- 6’6″ WT- 278lbs
Arm Length- 33 1/2″ Hand Size- 9 5/8″
40 Yard- 4.79 secs
Bench- 24 reps
3 Cone- 7.09 secs
Shaheen has a massive frame for a tight end but his speed and athleticism doesn’t show it. He was a former basketball player which helps him with athleticism. He’s a good route runner make nice crisp cuts and sinks into breaks very well. Shaheen is a great pass protector who is good at run blocking but could use some work. His last2 seasons were very productive but was it just poor competition or is he that good of a player will be the question.
Shaheen is a good route runner but needs more technical work in his routes. He needs to perfect hand usage to get himself open more during press coverage and he plays with a stiff upper body. Needs to work on his run blocking as he tends to lunge rather than chase at the 2nd level. The biggest question on Shaheen is whether or not he can play high level competition that he didn’t see in college.
Shaheen has drawn comparisons to Rob Gronkowski for his ability to block and run routes but he still needs work overall. He needs to play more loose and and improve on run blocking. Shaheen’s ability to adapt to the NFL and play high level competition is going to be the factor as to whether he makes it in the league or if he’s just another body.
TE, Senior, Iowa
George Kittle was a wide receiver when he committed to Iowa and was asked to bulk up to play TE. He wasn’t used much in the passing game while at Iowa. In his 4 seasons at Iowa Kittle recorded 48 receptions for 737 yards, 10 touchdowns and averaged 15.4 yards per catch.
HT- 6’4″ WT- 247lbs
Arm Length- 33 1/8″ Hand Size- 9 1/4″
40 Yard- 4.52 secs
Bench- 18 reps
Kittle played in a pro style offense which will help his transition to the NFL and is a good blocking tight end. He is a physical RAC player and can stretch the field vertically. He has very reliable hands as he only had 1 drop in his career. Has a nice and durable built frame that can withstand the punishment of the NFL.
Kittle blocks with to much lean forward and could be taken advantage of if the defender pulls away from him. Overall Kittle needs to improve on his routes as they are easily identified and needs to get more leverage in his routes. Needs to do a better job of keeping defenders out of his passing lanes. There isn’t much Kittle needs to improve upon other than his route running. His low production numbers are due to the fact he was sparingly used in the passing game.
Playing in a pro style offense will benefit Kittle in the NFL but he may be seen as undersized to be an inline blocker although he has the traits to do so. He will be a TE that can block or stretch the field and make catches but won’t be a flashy player overall.