Why would Jerry Reese draft a Tight End in the 1st round?
Well, in 2002 The New York Giants needed more fire power, so they used their first round draft pick to draft a Tight End out of Miami University. That tight end was Jeremy Shockey and he was a true heart attack. Shockey burst on the scene with a brash confident play the New York Giants had not seen in a long time.
In six seasons Shockey was named to the pro bowl 4 years in a row and amassed 4228 yards and 27 touchdowns. Seven years later the Giants are still trying to replace that production, that athletic ability and the spark he created week in and week out.
Love him or hate him, Jeremy Shockey was a great player. His understudies have never measured up: Kevin Boss, Bear Pascoe, Travis Beckum, Jake Ballard, Martellus Bennett, and Brandon Myers. Adrien Robinson was drafted two years ago with high praise; however, he has never taken the field.
Giants General Manager, Jerry Reese treats the Tight End positions like he does Linebackers…expendable. The 2014 draft class has 7 or 8 very good Tights Ends that could be worth a look. Enclosed is a snapshot of the top five.
1.Eric Ebron – North Carolina. Ebron was born and raised in Newark NJ as a New York Giants fan. He is a very explosive player and rated as the #1 Tight End in the draft. A bit smaller than some of the other Tight Ends(6’4″ 250), Ebron plays like a wide receiver. His combine time of 4.6 in the 40 yard dash was 2nd fastest in the group and his hands are outstanding. He has great body control, and can make acrobatic catches, yet his weight allows him to be taken down relatively easily.
He will need more strength and size to match up with NFL defensive ends; however, his speed, burst and athleticism has him picked in the 1st round. He will most likely be available for the Giants at #12.
Giants – I do not see the Giants drafting a tight end in the first round; however Ebron is suited for a team that wants to go down field. Macdoo likes this type of player.
2. Jace Amaro – Texas Tech. Amaro is a big strong player at 6’5″ 260. In college he played a good portions of the time in space allowing him clean releases resulting in legendary receiving numbers(1352 yards) for one year.
He has the ability to grow into a great blocker and his hands are very good. By far Amaro brings the most attitude and nastiness to the table. His immaturity has got him in some trouble on and off the field but Coughlin can straight that out. His straight away speed is good at 4.7; however he lacks over all explosion off the line.
Giants: Amaro is good but not at #12; He would be an interesting 2nd rounder but may never make it past the Patriots. His gritty attitude will help him on the pro level.
3) C.J. Fiedorowicz – Iowa. All around good athlete and very NFL ready. Iowa used Fiedorowicz in a very traditional sense lining him up against the tackle and letting the big man block. He catches the ball in traffic well but does not display a “Gronk” or “Graham” type of down field breakaway speed or separation.
He is not afraid to work hard in the trenches and will fit in on a team that throws the ball to him 3 to 4 times a game and will excel in the read zone. C.J. displayed a great cone drill time at the combine showing off his good footwork. The right team will grab him in round 3 and put a few plays in for him.
Giants: If the Giants go for a tackle and wide receiver, C.J. Fiedorowicz might be available in the early 3rd round.
4. Troy Niklas – Notre Dame. This guy is also very big at 6’6 270. Reports say that he is the best blocker in the group and with an NFL training program behind him he could blossom into a great blocking tight end. Niklas’ size will help him match up against most NFL defensive ends.
With only 2 years of college football at Tight End the converted linebacker has good hands and sees the field well. While he does not have elite breakaway speed, he has the ability to own the seem and the middle of the field. After watching video, I agree that when he fires out low and gets weight behind him, with his hands free he makes great blocks.
Giants: Big Blue likes tall Tight Ends that block(Ballard)so this could be a fit early round three.
5. Austin Seferian-Jenkins – Washington. Was rated in the top 3 tight ends on the board until the NFL combine doctors found an injured left foot. This sidelined the player from running and his only execution was the bench reps, which was less than stellar(20 reps).
His 20 reps showed that Seferian-Jenkins currently needs improvement in strength endurance if he wants to bang with NFL defensive ends. A big Tight End(6’5 265), Seferian-Jenkins developed into a very good player and was recognized as the 2013 John Mackey award for the nations top tight end.
Seferian Jenkins works hard at blocking and has very good footwork on the line and down the field with the ball in his hands. An all around athlete Seferian-Jenkins also played basketball.
Giants: If Seferian Jenkins makes past the Patriots he will be gone early in the 2nd round before Giants will pick if the injury does not prove to be extreme.
Craig J. Santucci | Managing Editor