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Monday, April 14, 2014
How close is Eric Ebron to a sure thing?

By Paul Kuharsky

Could North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron be about the surest thing the Tennessee Titans could draft if he's on the board at No. 11?

It's not a big position of need with Delanie Walker on the roster.

But the Titans do have a head coach who was an NFL tight end in Ken Whisenhunt. Whisenhunt's tight ends coach has been an NFL head coach with two different teams. Mike Mularkey was also a NFL tight end.

"I highly doubt Ebron would be available for the Titans," ESPN.com's resident scout, Matt Williamson said. "But I do think they would love to have him. Still, I am high enough on Walker that tight end wouldn't be my top priority."

Ty Schalter of Bleacher Report did an interesting piece on he likelihood of players panning out based on how they ultimately score in Pro Football Reference's Approximate Value.

Schalter looked at first- and second-round picks over 10 drafts whose players have at least three years of NFL experience.

"Just 14.8 percent of top-pick tight ends go three years without standing out," Schalter writes. "An incredible 81.4 percent of them make a big impact in either their first or second years. Just one tight end in this entire data set, Anthony Fasano, flopped in his first two seasons and blossomed in his third. Generally speaking, if a tight end hasn't become good after two years, he isn't going to."

Recent history bodes well for a top-rated tight end contributing early. How much that plays into the thinking of the team that takes him is something we may never know.