Detroit Lions: Chris Coyle

Lions draft outlook: Tight ends

January, 23, 2014
Two of the major college all-star games took place last Saturday. The Senior Bowl happens this Saturday with practices all week.

Many of the players selected in May’s draft will come from these three games or from underclassmen who decided the time was right to turn professional. Over the next two weeks, pairing with our position outlook series, we’ll take a quick preview look and look back at some names to become familiar with over the next four months as the NFL draft process crawls along.

Today continues with tight ends, a spot where the Lions need somebody -- but drafting a tight end might come down to whether or not the team re-signs Brandon Pettigrew or another tight end in free agency.

Previous looks: Quarterbacks; Running backs; Wide receivers.

NFLPA game:
  • Brian Wozniak (6-4, 257, Wisconsin). Had two catches for 25 yards in game. Had six catches for 33 yards and four touchdowns this season. Good blocker.
  • Chris Coyle (6-3, 222, Arizona State). One catch for three yards in game. Caught 29 passes for 423 yards and four touchdowns in 2013. No. 17 tight end.
Shrine Game:
  • Crockett Gillmore (6-6, 255, Colorado State). Had one catch for seven yards in Shrine game and 47 catches for 577 yards and two touchdowns this season. No. 14 tight end. Invited to Senior Bowl.
  • Jordan Najvar (6-6, 260, Baylor). Had one catch for 31 yards in the game and 10 catches for 85 yards this season. No. 34 tight end.
  • Ted Bolser (6-6, 252, Indiana). Had two catches for 8 yards in the game and 35 catches for 320 yards and six touchdowns this season. No. 22 tight end.
Senior Bowl prospects:
  • C.J. Fiedorowicz (6-5 3/8, 264, Iowa, No. 86 North) Had 30 catches for 299 yards and six touchdowns. No. 6 tight end.
  • Arthur Lynch (6-5, 254, Georgia, No. 88 South) Had 30 catches for 459 yards and five touchdowns. No. 9 tight end.
  • Gator Hoskins (6-2, 244, Marshall, No. 26 North). Could also be a fullback. Interesting prospect to watch. Had 50 catches for 821 yards and 15 touchdowns last season.
  • Jacob Pedersen (6-5, 240, Wisconsin, No. 86 North) Had 39 catches for 551 yards and three touchdowns. No. 7 tight end.
  • Marcel Jensen (6-5 1/4, 266, Fresno State). Won’t play in game. Replaced by Gillmore. Had 26 catches for 353 yards and three touchdowns this year. No. 8 tight end.
  • Gillmore (No. 86 South)
Others not in major all-star games:
  • Eric Ebron (6-4 1/8, 231, North Carolina) Caught 62 passes for 973 yards and three touchdowns. No. 1 tight end.
  • Austin Seferian-Jenkins (6-6, 266, Washington). Had 36 catches for 450 yards and eight touchdowns. No. 2 tight end.
  • Jace Amaro (6-5, 255, Texas Tech). Had 106 catches for 1,352 yards and seven touchdowns. No. 3 tight end.
  • Richard Rodgers (6-4, 245, California) Listed as a wide receiver this year but has size to be a tight end. Had 39 catches for 608 yards and a touchdown.
The first two of the three major college All-Star games are Saturday and this is the final in-game looks for a lot of players before they head to their various training facilities to prepare for combines and pro days.

And for some players, this will be the last time they play a meaningful football game.

Considering some of Detroit's needs in May's draft, here are some players to watch for the Shrine game (4 p.m. ET, NFL Network) and the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl (6 p.m. ET, ESPN2). The big game, the Senior Bowl, is next week.

And a disclaimer: There's a long, long way between now and the draft and these are just a smattering of players who fit profiles of what Detroit might look for.

Shrine Game: (Here's a link to our coverage of the practices this week Insider) (Link to rosters)


Seantavius Jones, Valdosta State (No. 81 West): Listed at 6-foot-3 1/8, 209 pounds. Colleague Steve Muench described him like this in one of his reports this week: "He also has a wide catching radius and can catch the ball away from his frame. One area where he can improve is consistency. He caught the ball with his body more and more as the practice progressed." No. 69 receiver on ESPN's board.

Matt Hazel, Coastal Carolina (No. 84 East): Listed at 6-3, 190, Muench describes him as so: "He tracked the ball well, extended his arms as he dove and didn't let the ground jar the ball loose." No. 49 receiver.

Jeremy Gallon, Michigan (No. 80 East): Listed at 5-foot-8, 187. He will be very familiar to Lions fans and has above average leaping ability and hands for his size. No. 65 receiver.

Tight ends:

Crockett Gilmore, Colorado State (No. 8 East): Listed at 6-6, 245. Gilmore is the No. 14 tight end on the ESPN board. Three-year starter for the Rams who caught 43 passes for 553 yards last season.


Max Bullough, Michigan State (No. 44 East): Bullough is another well-known name to Lions fans since he played for the Spartans. Was suspended for the Rose Bowl. Is rated as the No. 4 inside linebacker and No. 94 overall player.

Defensive backs:

Shaquille Richardson, CB, Arizona (No. 5 West): 6-0 1/8, 194. Here's what Muench said about him: "Has 10-inch hands and made it look easy, snatching the ball out of the air during position-specific drills."

Rashaad Reynolds, CB, Oklahoma State (No. 16 West): Here's what Muench wrote about him: "Tracked the ball well on an over-the-shoulder catch during individual drills. Though he slipped transitioning out of his backpedal on one rep during one-on-ones, for the most part, the 5-9 3/4, 191-pound Reynolds showed good balance and fluidity." No. 19 cornerback.

NFLPA Collegiate Bowl (Link to rosters):


Isaiah Burse, Fresno State (No. 80, National): Listed at 6-foot-1, 187 pounds. From Todd McShay Insider: "Burse was a highly productive player for the Bulldogs as one of QB Derek Carr’s top targets. He is a classic slot receiver and return specialist who is really good with the ball in his hands. He stood out as the quickest and most polished among the receivers when it came to plucking the ball and then getting upfield. He showed really quick feet and hands." No. 71 receiver.

Tight end:

Chris Coyle, Arizona State (No. 88, American): Listed at 6-foot-3, 222 pounds. Caught 57 passes for 696 yards and five touchdowns in 2012, followed by 29 catches for 423 yards and four touchdowns this season.

Defensive backs:

C.J. Barnett, S, Ohio State (No. 24 American): Barnett is the No. 12 safety on the board. Listed at 5-11 7/8, 201. Made 152 tackles in his career with four interceptions.

Special teams:

Cairo Santos, K, Tulane (No. 9, National): Santos, rated as the No. 2 kicker on the ESPN board, had a rough 2013 (16-23 field goals) but was perfect in 2012, making all 21 of his attempts.