The tight end position has dogged the Green Bay Packers for quite a few years, never truly being able to find that long-term solution at the position. As this year’s NFL Draft draws closer, taking a look at the TE prospects can help show the direction that the Packers NFL Draft may head this year.
This group does not have a Kyle Pitts-like prospect like last year’s draft did, as it plays more on the depth options. With a plethora of mid-draft players fighting for any sort of separation between them, taking a look at some of the better prospects will help show what the Packers will be considering this April.
Jalen Wydermeyer out of Texas A&M stands 6’5 and over 260 lbs., making him quite the figure on the gridiron. Having earned Freshman All-American honors right out of the gate, Wydermeyer is fit for a spread offense that focuses its passing attack on looking for a vertical threat, a role that he can easily fit.
Blocking is an issue, which likely will not sit well with Brian Gutekunst and company, but Wydermeyer’s pure athleticism, route-running capabilities, and solid hands can help make him a target on their draft board.
A recent history of Texas A&M TEs has not worked out for the Packers, as Jace Sternberger had all the potential in the world but was caught up in some off-field issues that ultimately cut his time short with the team. But Wydermeyer stands out for his ability to win a lot of 50/50 balls, making him a juicy draft-day target for this team.
A bit smaller than Wydermeyer, Isaiah Likely profiles as more of a flex option, as his blocking and receiving skills both stand out on the field. Coming out of a smaller school (Coastal Carolina) may make some teams wary of taking him on Day 2, but Likely’s skillset warrants that kind of draft capital.
Good, natural hands combined with a great understanding of offensive football works in Likely’s favor, and he could become the second option on the Green Bay roster that fills the H-back and TE roles, a la Josiah Deguara.
Trey McBride profiles not only as an offensive option but also one that could see some time on special teams, music to the ears of the front office looking to add talent across multiple levels.
For McBride, his Colorado State days say him line up all over the formation, taking on rushers in blocking spots and converting crucial third-downs with his strong hands and established catch radius. If Green Bay is looking for a down-and-dirty TE option that looks somewhat plain but can check a ton of boxes, then McBride is the play.
Best of the Rest
Jake Ferguson, Jelani Woods, Cade Otton, Jeremy Ruckert, Greg Dulcich, and others make up the best of the remaining options in this TE group.
Ferguson is known because of his days at Wisconsin, and his blocking/receiving abilities will naturally put him in good standing with the Packers.
Woods is an athletic freak that has been jumping up draft boards, and the former Virginia Cavalier showed well at both the Shrine Bowl and the Combine, putting up impressive testing results.
Otton, Ruckert, and Dulcich all offer up different pluses and minuses, many of which unfortunately involve their in-line blocking abilities. A big part of being a functioning TE in a Matt LaFleur-led offensive attack is the blocking abilities of the TE, helping set edges and utilize motion to create lead blockers.
Ruckert looks to be the most well-rounded option of the three, but both Otton and Dulcich are solid receivers that have the intangibles to become better when blocking.뿓뿓뿓
Mike Johrendt has been an avid fan of the Packers ever since he can remember. He is now a writer at PackersTalk and you can follow him on Twitter at @MJohrendt23
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