Coming into the 2023 NFL draft, there was a glaring hole at the tight end position for the Packers.
They lost their starter from the year before, Robert Tonyan, to free agency and the only returning tight ends were Josiah Deguara and Tyler Davis.
The Packers proceeded to pick 2 tight ends in rounds 2 and 3 to help Jordan Love in his first year as starting quarterback for the team.
Although Luke Musgrave and Tucker Kraft have two different styles of playing, they both bring hope to the tight end room in 2023 and can contribute in their first year on the team.
What Luke Musgrave can bring
Musgrave has a real shot at being a receiving threat at tight end.
The Packers have not had much of a receiving threat at tight end since Jared Cook in 2016.
Even though Musgrave had a season ending injury just 2 games into the 2022 season, he started off his season the same way he left the 2021 season with 11 receptions for 169 yards and a touchdown against Boise State.
What stands out with Musgrave is his speed, he ran a 4.61-second 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, which breaks down to a 10-yard split of 1.54 seconds.
With that type of speed, Musgrave can easily run routes and break away from tacklers.
The Packers though understand that he doesn’t need to be a day one starter right away and can develop as the season progresses.
Musgrave can also help in the run game as Oregon State uses the outside zone running scheme, which is the same scheme as the Packers use.
What Tucker Kraft can bring
Kraft on the other hand has more of a blocking tight end background but can certainly provide some help in the pass game as well.
Packers general Manager Brian Gutekunst said Kraft was more of a “All around tight end” and had above average bocking skills, which can help in both the passing game and running game.
One of the more notable skills Kraft possess is the ability to get yards after the catch.
Last year despite playing a limited amount of games, Kraft had an average of 8.0 yards after the catch.
For a larger sampling, in 2021 Kraft had 345 yards after the catch, which would have ranked as the sixth-best within the FBS.
If Kraft can showcase that he can get yards after the catch on the NFL level, he’ll be a threat in the Packers offense along with Musgrave and the two would be a deadly one-two combo in the NFL.
The Future for the Packers Offense
It has been a long time since the hype of the Packers tight ends have been this big.
Long gone are the days of the Packers lining up two tight ends that can stretch and possess the field. But if these two tight ends develop into what the Packers hope, the Packers offense will be one to be worried about for seasons to come.——————
Hau Khuong has been a Packers fan since 1996. He currently works as a video editor in Green Bay and writes for PackersTalk.com and you can follow him on twitter at @HauKhuongSports.
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