Friday, April 4, 2014
Daily draft dish: New age tight ends
By Rich Cimini
Every morning, from now until draft day (May 8), we'll provide a draft factoid, courtesy of ESPN Stats & Information. We'll keep it New York Jets-centric, sticking to team needs, possible selections, trends, etc.
The teams that draft North Carolina's Eric Ebron and Texas Tech's Jace Amaro, the top pass-catching tight ends, will be getting hybrid talents that represent the new trend at the position. Of their 188 combined receptions last season, 87 percent came when they were lined up in the slot or split out as a wide receiver. In other words, they're not 'Y' tight ends -- the traditional, in-line variety.
Let's get specific: Ebron caught 49 of his 62 passes from the slot or split out. He also averaged 8.7 yards after the catch, the best of any top-10 prospect at the position. Amaro made 97 of his 106 receptions from the slot or split out -- and a good chunk of them were clutch. In fact, he led the FBS with 31 third-down receptions that resulted in a first down or a touchdown.
The Jets most definitely need a pass-catching tight end.