With the NFL Combine in full swing, prospects continue to rise and fall. One player that solidified his position is Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert. As we projected with his draft profile, the 6-5, 250-pound tight end was impressive with a 4.6 40-yard dash and 22 reps at 225. While those numbers are impressive, he may not have totally separated himself from his closest competition to be the first tight end off the board, Stanford prospect Zach Ertz.tight end has a solid frame and has experience in-line and as a moveable tight end. On tape, he demonstrated very good hands and does a great job at catching the ball on the run. While he does not possess blazing speed, timed 4.72 40-yard dash at the combine, he is a fluid athlete as a receiver and has the ability to run any route. Those numbers backed up his productive 2012 campaign where he recorded 69 catches for 898 yards and six touchdowns.
Yes, at times he may round some things off, but his ability to find a soft spot in zone coverage more than makes up for that. He is a high effort blocker who is still a work in progress in-line but showed improvement throughout his career, and with 24 reps at 225 has the functional strength for the position. Coming from Stanford and their pro style system, Ertz has the ability to pay dividends for some team in 2013 even if his arms length was slightly below average. He has a strong combination of skills that will make him appealing to a team searching for an attack the seam playmaker at the tight end position.
Ertz has been mentioned as high as number 19 overall to the New York Giants. It will be interesting to see how this battle between two very similar prospects pans out in the next two months.
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