Marcedes Lewis (D. Peters/JagNation.com)
As we make our way across the offenses of the AFC South, we’ve come to one of the more utilized positions in recent years, the tight end.
1. Dallas Clark, Indianapolis Colts- Dallas Clark is the epitome of the modern tight end. Clark is a mismatch for any linebacker, due to his speed, and his 6'3", 252 lb. size forces him to be too large for any safety or corner to match up with. Clark’s 58 receptions for 616 yards weren’t all that impressive, but his 11 touchdown receptions secures him as one of the league’s elite red zone threats.
Positives: Speed, size, great hands, great understanding of the game.
Limitations: Not a superior blocker.
2. Owen Daniels, Houston Texans- Owen Daniels is one of the most underrated tight ends in the game, as the third-year pro combines great hands with good size, and he has just enough speed to get open in the seam. Daniels caught 63 passes for 763 yards in just his second season in the NFL.
Positives: Size, great hands, shows an ability to get open in the red zone.
Limitations: Not a deep threat, not a superior blocker.
3. Marcedes Lewis, Jacksonville Jaguars- Marcedes Lewis has had a slow start to his career, as the former first-round pick had to play catch-up as a rookie due to a preseason ankle injury. Since then, Lewis has showed good hands and an ability to make tough catches while being a more than adequate blocker.
Positives: Solid blocker, good athleticism, nice hands
Limitations: Only average timed speed.
4. Alge Crumpler, Tennessee Titans- Alge Crumpler is a former Pro Bowler (with the Atlanta Falcons) who signed with Tennessee after being released after last season. Crumpler has battled injuries, but has proven himself to be a big play guy with great hands. His 35 career touchdown receptions shows he is a viable red zone target.
Positives: Great hands, great understanding of the game.
Limitations: Injuries, has probably already played his best football.
5. Bo Scaife, Tennessee Titans- With the Titans signing of Alge Crumpler, it is assumed that the team will employ a lot of two tight end sets in 2008. Bo Scaife showed solid hands and an ability to move the chains in 2007.
Positives: Solid hands, good blocker.
Limitations: Not a fantastic athlete, not a great red zone threat.
6. George Wrighster, Jacksonville Jaguars- Wrighster is one of the most athletic tight ends in the AFC despite not being able to stay healthy almost every year of his five-year career. Wrighster routinely hurdles defenders and has solid hands.
Positives: Great athleticism, better than average blocker, good hands.
Limitations: Injuries, poor timed speed.
Charlie Bernstein is the Editor-in-Chief of JagNation.com, and a regular syndicated contributor to FoxSports.com, Sirius NFL Radio, MySpace Sports and Sportsillustrated.com. Charlie is also a member of the Pro Football Writers Association, and is a columnist for the New Smyrna Observer. Feel free to contact him -HERE- with questions or comments.
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