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2020 NFL Draft Preview - Tight End

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NCAA Football: Oklahoma at West Virginia Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Dolphins will enter the season with a strong TE group consisting of Dwayne Allen, Mike Gesicki, Durham Smythe, and Nick O’Leary. Obviously there are no stars in this group but overall is pretty solid. Allen, most likely being the best blocker of the group, will certainly see plenty of snaps assuming he can stay healthy with O’Leary and Gesicki getting involved in the passing game. Look, we all know tight end isn’t a major need for the Miami Dolphins - Gesicki and Smythe being two young guys with potential while Allen has already proven he belongs in this league. However, for the sake of this series, I will cover the potential tight end class below. Enjoy and please feel free to leave me a comment below. Thanks for reading

Albert Okwuegbunam, Missouri (Jr)

Okwuegbunam starts off this season at the top of this draft class. At 6’5” with good speed, he is a constant mismatch. He is dominate at winning jump balls and knows how to catch the ball at its highest point. He’s also physical and knows how to use his size to his advantage. I was impressed at his blocking too – though very inconsistent, he has shown the strength and skill to be a good blocker. I do think he needs to improve his consistency overall this season – and I saw many drops that would worry me. Overall, Okwuegbunam has the skills and talent to be a dominate TE in the NFL and with a good season could end up being a high draft pick.

NCAA Football: Missouri at Arkansas Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Jacob Breeland, Oregon (Sr)

Breeland is a pretty well rounded TE. He is a capable blocker, showing good hand use and a great drive when engaged. He’s got good hands – rarely dropping passes and is able to bring down contested passes. He’s also one of the better route runners in this class. The main holdup I see in Breeland is while he’s pretty good at most things, he is not elite. He’s not particularly fast, quick or big. He isn’t the strongest and isn’t the best playmaker on the field. However, the motor is there, he’s clearly got passion for the game and I think he could contribute early in his NFL career.

NCAA Football: UCLA at Oregon Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Colby Parkinson, Stanford (Jr)

Parkinson is a tight end with tremendous size that creates an immediate disadvantage for his opponents. He excels at winning jump balls and is able to be physical with corners. I think he possesses reliable hands and shows good concentration catching contested balls. I also think he’s got good speed and acceleration however, he does seem stiff and the change of direction speed isn’t anything to write home about. Overall, Parkinson’s size and reliable hands will be what he is drafted for – his blocking, while the effort is clearly given, isn’t that great and defenders easily shrug him off. I see him as a 2nd – 4th round pick.

NCAA Football: Southern California at Stanford Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

Grant Calcaterra, Oklahoma (Jr)

Calcaterra is my favorite TE in this class. I think he’s one of the better playmakers – having solid hands, great quickness, good speed, impressive route running and surprisingly a good blocker. The main issue with him is he’s not the biggest guy. I think with another solid season Calcaterra could end up being a high draft pick.

NCAA Football: Big 12 Championship-Texas vs Oklahoma Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Other noteable tight end prospects:

Mitchell Wilcox, South Florida (Sr)
Matt Bushman, BYU (Sr)
Charlie Woerner, Georgia (Sr)
Cheyenne O’Grady, Arkansas (Jr)
Daniel Imatorbhebhe, USC (Sr)
Bryce Wolma, Arizona (Jr)
Jared Rice, Fresno St. (Sr)