The Post’s Ryan Dunleavy lists his top 10 tight ends in this year’s NFL draft, based on evaluations and conversations with people around the league:
- Kyle Pitts, Florida, 6-6, 245: Maybe the best tight end prospect of all time. Serviceable as a blocker, but at his best streaking down the seam and making contested catches. True matchup nightmare who could be a team’s top pass-catcher as a rookie.
- Pat Freiermuth, Penn State, 6-5, 251: Big drop-off from Pitts, but still an every-down in-line or slot tight end. Former basketball player can box out defenders and sky for the tough catch.
- Hunter Long, Boston College, 6-5, 254: Showed a knack for moving the sticks because he knows how to find space underneath for a scrambling quarterback. Functional blocker, but not much of a second-level receiving threat.
- Brevin Jordan, Miami, 6-3, 247: Former top recruit endured an injury-plagued career as a three-year starter. Just starting to learn the intricacies of route-running, but a tempting amount of raw athleticism.
- Tommy Tremble, Notre Dame, 6-3, 241: Best blocking tight end of the top five, as a result of playing in the shadow of Cole Kmet and future NFL tight end Michael Mayer. Play-action pass weapon who initiates contact.
- Tre’ McKitty, Georgia, 6-4, 246: Underutilized as a pass-catcher at both Florida State and Georgia, but showed an ability to beat linebackers and run through tackles. Knee injury kept him out of Georgia’s Pro Day.
- Kenny Yeboah, Ole Miss, 6-4, 247: Converted from wide receiver at Temple, but really blossomed after a transfer, with 19.4 yards per reception. Struggles to block power rushes.
- Tony Poljan, Virginia, 6-7, 265: Split time between quarterback and tight end for two years at Central Michigan before settling in and transferring. Emerging red-zone threat after six-touchdown season.
- Jacob Harris, UCF, 6-5, 219: Late-bloomer who discovered football in 2014, but didn’t catch a pass until 2019. Already 24 years old, so development needs to happen quickly. Maintains his soccer athleticism as a long-strider.
- John Bates, Boise State, 6-6, 256: Just two career touchdowns despite ideal size to be a red-zone target, but will block edge rushers. More than 500 career special teams snaps is a roster bonus.
Hunter Long, Boston College: Ran an unofficial 4.63 in the 40-yard dash to open eyes. Played in pro-style offense under veteran NFL coaches Jeff Hafley and Frank Cignetti.
Pro Wells, TCU: Enticing athleticism, but kind of a one-trick pony as a red-zone threat. Academic concerns forced him to go to prep school and community college before TCU.
Small School Wonder
Zach Davidson, Central Missouri: Standout three-year punter who came from nowhere in 2019 with 40 catches for 894 yards and 15 touchdowns. Raw route-runner. Raw blocker. Raw, raw, raw.