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Top 10 Tight Ends of the 2022 NFL Draft

Top 10 Tight Ends of the 2022 NFL Draft

1) Trey McBride, Colorado State

Key Measurables: 6035, 246 lb 

Notable 2021 Stats: 90 rec, 1,121 yards, 12.5 YPC, 1 TD

Best Trait: Physicality and Strength

Player Comp: Dallas Goedert

Background:

Senior who started 33 games over four years. Former three-star recruit. Two-time All-MWC First Team and one-time All MWC Second-Team. 2021 Mackey Award Winner and Unanimous All-American. Extremely capable and physical blocker, probably the best in this TE class. Not overly athletic but has sufficient athleticism and shows outstanding hands and above the line ability after the catch.

Projection:

Day one starter who can be relied upon as both a blocker and receiver. Should (and likely will) be the first Tight End off the board. 

Full Scouting Report

2) Isaiah Likely, Coastal Carolina

Key Measurables: 6044, 245 lb, 36 inch Vertical

Notable 2021 Stats: 59 rec, 912 yards, 15.5 YPC, 12 TDs

Best Trait: Ball Skills

Player Comp: David Njoku

Background:

True senior with 42 starts. 2019 All-Sun Belt third team and 2020 and 2021 All-Sun Belt first team. 2021 John Mackey Award semifinalist. Named honorable mention or second team for multiple All-American teams. Versatile player who mostly lines up inline but is also capable from the slot or wide.

Projection:

Good receiver and capable blocker who can be a three down starting TE. Scheme adjustment will have an effect coming from a triple option system but receiving skills will certainly translate. Will likely be the 2nd or 3rd TE off the board. 

Full Scouting Report

3) Jelani Woods, University of Virginia

Key Measurables: 6071, 253 lb, 34 1.2 arm, 4.61 speed

Notable 2021 Stats: 44 rec, 598 yards, 13.8 YPC, 8 TDs, All-ACC First Team

Best Trait: Large frame and length

Player Comp: Marcedes Lewis

Background:

Relatively new to the tight end position as he was recruited to be a dual-threat QB at Oklahoma State before changing positions.Transferred from Oklahoma State as a grad transfer. He saw his best year with the Cavaliers as soon as he transferred, becoming a reliable target for QB Brennan Armstrong. Lined up all over Virginia’s offensive formations – in the slot, outside, and with his hands in the ground. Overall impressive athlete who is a willing blocker and a reliable, big target for his QB. 

Projection:

Will likely start as the number two tight end on a team, but will fight to become the starter if he continues to refine his blocking skills as well as getting more consistent with his strong hands in catching the ball. He has a lot of upside considering he is relatively new to the position and with the right coaching and system, he can prove to be a solid TE in the league. Project him as solid value on Day 3. 

Full Scouting Report

4) Jalen Wydermyer, Texas A&M

Key Measurables: 6037, 255 lb, 5.03 speed at Pro Day

Notable 2021 Stats: 40 rec, 515 yards, 12.9 YPC, 4 TDs, All-SEC Second Team

Best Trait: Route running vs. Man coverage

Player Comp: Jared Cook

Background:

Wydermyer is a former four-star recruit out of Dickinson, Texas where he was a dual sports athlete in both basketball and football. In his freshman season, he started in 11 of the 13 games he participated in – hauling in 32 receptions for 447 yards and 6 touchdowns. He was named to the SEC All-Freshman Team as well as the AP All-SEC Second Team. From there, his statistics somewhat plateaued. Wydermyers’ 14.0 yards per reception as a freshman were the highest of his three year career. He was Second Team All-SEC all three years at Texas A&M and was a Mackey Award Finalist in his senior season. 

Projection:

Wydermyer projects as a strong receiving tight end who can win in press man to man coverage as well as down the field both outside and along the seams. He is best on deep and intermediate routes where he can hit his break in stride and does not have to start and stop too much. While he is a poor in-line blocker at the moment, he has the build to become adequate with the right coaching. His draft stock certainly took a hit after posting a 5.03 40-yard dash at his Pro Day. Still, Wydermyer should be selected in the 3rd or 4th round.

Full Scouting Report

 

More Top 10 2022 NFL Draft Prospect Lists:

Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Wide Receivers | Tight Ends | Offensive Tackles |Interior Offensive Line | Edge Rushers | Interior Defensive Line | Linebackers | Cornerbacks | Safeties

 

5) Charlie Kolar, Iowa State

Key Measurables: 6064, 252 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 62 rec, 756 yards, 12.2 YPC, 6 TDs

Best Trait: Size and frame

Player Comp: Logan Thomas

Background: 

Redshirt senior who started 29 out of 49 games over 4 years. 2021 William V Campbell Trophy Winner and CoSIDA Academic Football Player of the Year. 2019 and 2020 AP All-American 3rd Team. 2020 and 2021 Mackey Award Finalist. Former 3-star prospect and top-50 TE prospect in recruiting. Compiled a 3.99 GPA as a mechanical engineering major. Brother played QB at Oklahoma State. True F TE with versatility. Much better receiver than blocker. Not athletic, but large and can use his size to his advantage. Contested catch guy and red zone weapon. 

Projection:

Immediate contributor as a receiving TE but not ready to be in a heavy blocking scheme at this point. Most technically sound route runner in the class. Potential TE2 and future starter but needs the right scheme fit.

Full Scouting Report

6) Jeremy Ruckert, Ohio State

Key Measurables: 6054, 252 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 26 rec, 309 yards, 11.9 YPC, 3 TDs

Best Trait: Effort

Player Comp: Brent Celek

Background:

True Senior who has played in 45 games over 4 seasons at Ohio State. Former top-50 recruit and #2 TE in his class. Played only a minor receiving role in the Ohio State offense that doesn’t have big usage of TE’s. More developed blocker than receiver at this point in time. Comfortable in his impressive frame and knows how to use it. Athleticism is sufficient but not a strength. Technical skills need refinement but have a starting point. 

Projection:

Not ready to start but could contribute as depth right away as he improves. Could have a long career as a TE2 if he maintains his physical blocking style at the next level.

Full Scouting Report

7) Jake Ferguson, University of Wisconsin

Key Measurables: 6047, 250 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 46 rec, 450 yards, 9.8 YPC, 3 TDs

Best Trait: Size and explosiveness

Player Comp: Dalton Schultz

Background:

Redshirt Senior who started 36 of 47 career games and each one from his sophomore year on. Father played football at Nebraska and brother played for Wisconsin from 2013-2017. 2020 John Mackey Award Semifinalist. Valuable and consistent in all four of his years at Wisconsin. Still needs further development but can contribute immediately on all three downs. Traditional inline TE, rarely plays in the slot. Should have a floor as a reliable pass catcher and capable blocker. Extremely comfortable in motion and in different alignments.

Projection:

Day one contributor as TE2 at minimum with starter ceiling. Adequate to above the line in nearly all categories and has the highest upside with the ball in his hands. Good value on Day 3. 

Full Scouting Report

8) Greg Dulcich, UCLA

Key Measurables: 6040, 243 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 42 rec, 725 yards, 17.3 YPC, 5 TDs

Best Trait: Ball carrier ability

Player Comp: Brevin Jordan

Background:

Started 17 out of 33 games over 4 years as a Redshirt Junior. 2021 Mackey Semifinalist and All-Pac 12 1st Team. Versatile Y capable of playing inline or in the slot. Productive receiver with athleticism and YAC skills. Average blocking limits his utility right away.

Projection:

Immediate developmental backup or third-string with legit starter potential. Best with the ball in his hands. Has much to improve on, but a high ceiling given his above the line effort and motor. Will likely be selected in the 5th round or later.

Full Scouting Report

9) Cade Otton, University of Washington

Key Measurables: 6050, 247 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 28 rec, 205 yards, 8.9 YPC, 1 TD; 2020 – 4 games, 18 rec, 258 yards, 14.3 YPC, 3 TDs

Best Trait: Effort and motor

Player Comp: Blake Jarwin

Background:

A four-year starter who played in 31 games finishing with 91 rec, 1,026 yards, and 9 TDs. Former three-star recruit. All-Pac-12 First Team in 2020. Overall, Otton has the size and capability of being a very reliable pass catcher for a QB for many years. He has been taught well at Washington – as displayed by his technique in run blocking and ability to get open against zone coverages. True run blocking ability and does just enough in the passing game to earn playing time. 

Projection:

Won’t be a matchup nightmare, but in a play-action scheme, he could prove to be extremely useful. Will need to work on his play strength and aggression if he wants to be a solid starter. Will be a solid value in the 5th or 6th round. 

Full Scouting Report

10) Derrick Deese Jr., San Jose State University

Key Measurables: 6032, 244 lb

Notable 2021 Stats: 47 rec, 730 yards, 15.5 YPC, 4 TDs

Best Trait: Play strength and strike when blocking

Player Comp: Jordan Akins

Background:

Transferred from Golden West Community College and played three seasons at San Jose St. Aligned in-line and in the slot. Mainly used in the slot, which leaves some question marks about his in-line blocking. His father played in the NFL as an offensive lineman, so there are bloodlines there. Has the strength and competitiveness to block and the reliable hands and radius to be a solid number two tight end at the next level. 

Projection:

He has a lot of room to grow and could get better with some good coaching. Must refine his blocking technique and route running. Does a variety of things at an “average” level and won’t be a consistent starting TE in the league. Project him as a late 5th, early 6th round pick. 

Full Scouting Report

More Top 10 2022 NFL Draft Prospect Lists:

Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Wide Receivers | Tight Ends | Offensive Tackles |Interior Offensive Line | Edge Rushers | Interior Defensive Line | Linebackers | Cornerbacks | Safeties