NFL Draft 19- Tight Ends

1. T.J. Hockenson (Iowa)– The tight end class this year may seem light, but this guy is a talent. He has the potential to become one of the best all-around playing the position at the next level. When I first watched him play, I immediately noticed how competitive he was along with his athleticism. He has tremendous burst off the line of scrimmage to release himself and find early separation up the seams. He’s very fluid and quick in his intermediate and deep routes. I like how he uses his body as a shield to the catch point. He has a wide catch radius and can create late-catch space with secure and sticky hands. He can attack with strong and crisp hands, he runs through contact when blocking and sustains and finishes blocks when locked in.

2. Irv Smith (Alabama)– He was built to play the position of tight end. He’s good as a blocker that has decent hand placement as in-line blocker, he’s effective as a lead blocker as an H-back or fullback. As a receiver, he can create mismatch nightmares against anyone in man coverage. He displays good route strength pushing through the contact along with being a sturdy target down the middle of the field. He shows solid hand strength to secure contested catches. He loves those 50/50 passes as he’s able to elevate himself and compete in the air. Once he makes the catch, he can drag the defenders for additional yards.

3. Noah Fant (Iowa)– He reminds me a lot of Eric Ebron. He’s a pass catching tight end with length, acceleration and speed to create matchup challenges all over the field. He’s a former basketball player so his ability to jump has translated from the hardwood to the gridiron. He shows a big, initial burst that allows him to gain easy separation. He’s a touchdown machine that had a score for every four catches at Iowa. He can sink himself low and scoop up catches. Noah shows great potential as a nightmare in the red area of the field.

4. Jace Sternberger (Texas A&M)– I was able to watch a few Aggies games this year and I heard his name quite often. He’s a talented route runner that moves more like a wide receiver than a tight end. He can maintain himself with good speed. He has excellent hand-eye coordination to make smooth catches in transition down the field. He plays with the same energy on each play. Jace runs with vision and power after every catch.

5. Kahale Warring (San Diego State)– He’s still a newcomer to the game of football. He still displays the size, speed and athleticism to become a versatile player at the highest level in the NFL. He’s a fierce competitor that can run block and dominate and the talent to line up in the slot. He’s a tough blocker that can toss you around. He’s quick and shifty for sharp, directional changes in his routes. He’s speedy to get pass linebackers in coverage, he’s talented to work all three levels of the field as a receiver and he plays with the mindset of a basketball player. He can post up defenders and use his size to his advantage. Being able to adjust is huge as a pass catcher and he can make his in mid-air.