2010 NFL Combine - Tight End Analysis
Arizona TE Rob Gronkowski
Arizona TE Rob Gronkowski
Posted Mar 4, 2010

Post-Combine quick looks at the tight ends invited to Indy.

2010 NFL Post-Combine

Tight End Rankings

2010 NFL Combine Quick Looks & Post-Combine Rankings

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2010 NFL Combine Results
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- 2010 NFL Combine - Offensive Winners  
- 2010 NFL Combine - Offensive Losers 
- 2010 NFL Combine - Defensive Winners 
- 2010 NFL Combine - Defensive Losers 
1. Jermaine Gresham, Oklahoma 6-5, 261
Post-Combine Skinny: All questions about the bad knee were answered with a decent 4.73 in the 40 and good mobility in the agility drills. No one ever questioned his pass catching ability and all that mattered if he could move. He did, but he wasn't explosive. The one negative was the mere 20 reps on the bench. He really won't ever block anyone.
Pre-Combine Rank: 1
Positives: A fantastic receiver who can be used as a deep threat or a reliable playmaker across the middle. … Has tremendous tools. Is like a big wide receiver. … Terrific hands and will fight for the ball.
Negatives: Knee injury that kept him out of the 2009 season will be an ongoing concern. … Not an elite blocker. Purely a receiver. … Benefitted from a hurry-up, high-octane offense that had plenty of talent around him.

2. Rob Gronkowski, Arizona 6-6, 264
Post-Combine Skinny: Still recovering from a back problem, he didn't run but he did lift coming up with 23 reps. He measured big, and if he can move well in at least one workout, he'll likely be the No. 2 tight end taken.
Pre-Combine Rank: 2
Positives: The total package. He has size, athleticism, hands, and toughness. … The best combination of tight end skills and talent in the draft. … Great route runner with baby-soft hands.
Negatives: Can't stay healthy. Was a superstar when on the field, but he wasn't on the field that much. … Not necessarily a deep threat. He'll be more of a mid-range receiver. … Not all that experienced after missing so much time. Small body of work to go by.

3. Aaron Hernandez, Florida 6-2, 245
Post-Combine Skinny: He didn't run, contributing to the issues the Gators had at the Combine, and he didn't lift. He still needs time and he has to rock at the suddenly hot Florida Pro Day.
Pre-Combine Rank: 3
Positives: Possibly the best receiving tight end in the draft. … Fast. Not just fast for a tight end, but fast. Will be too fast for many linebackers. … Is natural in and out of his cuts. Fluid and is an ultra-reliable route runner.
Negatives: Doesn't look the part. Looks like more of a fullback than a typical NFL tight end. … A willing blocker but not a dominant one. Will get pushed around by anyone with strength. … A tweener. Not quite athletic enough to be an NFL wide receiver, but not a pro tight end.

4. Garrett Graham, Wisconsin 6-3, 243
Post-Combine Skinny: Not considered an elite athlete, he wasn't bad as he moved well and looked like a natural. He didn't lift all that well with just 20 reps, but he's not supposed to be much of a blocker. Overall, the workout confirmed what everyone knew, he's a solid prospect.
Pre-Combine Rank: 4
Positives: A nice receiver. Was the only thing going for the Badger passing game at time throughout his career. … A natural target who always finds a way to get into the holes in the secondary. … Excellent hands and is willing to take a big shot.
Negatives: Might be moved around to find the right position, and that's not a plus. … Will be seen by some as a fullback even though he's not an elite blocker. … Doesn't have an NFL burst and isn't all that fast.

8. Dorin Dickerson, Pitt (WR) 6-1, 226
Post-Combine Skinny: He's not a tight end and he's not a receiver, but he showed that he's a player who has to find a spot somewhere. He blew away all the tight ends with a blazing 4.4, and he was solid on the bench with 24 reps (one more than star DT prospect Gerald McCoy). The vertical of 43" was out of the stadium and he moved effortlessly and smoothly.
Pre-Combine Rank: 8
Positives: Versatile. He'll be used like a tight end and an H-Back, but he has wide receiver skills. … Fights for the ball and is great at fighting off defenders to make plays. … Hard worker. Has the motor and the try-hard ability to make himself into a player.
Negatives: Too short. He's built like a fullback but isn't a good enough blocker to be one. … Used as a receiver but was called a tight end. He's not an NFL wide receiver. … Doesn't have special raw skills. Can't be a full-time blocker and might not find a place as a receiver or tight end.

6. Jimmy Graham, Miami 6-6, 260
Post-Combine Skinny: For everyone interested in seeing what the basketball prospect could do in the football drills, he came through big with a fantastic 4.56 in the 40 and blew away all the tight ends by jumping out of the stadium with a 10'8" broad jump. The vertical, for a hoops player, was a surprisingly okay 38".
Pre-Combine Rank: 7
Positives: One of the most intriguing players in the draft. Very raw but with a limitless upside. … TALL. A former basketball player with 6-7 height and the athleticism to get even bigger on jump balls. … A great athlete with good hands considering his limited experience.
Negatives: Needs a ton of work. He's a technique mess. … Not a blocker. Too tall and doesn't get low. … Tempting to use names like Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzales because they were former basketball players. Graham isn't Gates or Gonzales.

7. Ed Dickson, Oregon
6-4, 249
Post-Combine Skinny: Didn't disappoint catching the ball, but he struggled with his raw speed and quickness numbers. The 4.67 isn't going to impress anyone and he sputtered around the agility drills. He wasn't as quick as he needed to be.
Pre-Combine Rank: 5
Positives: A natural receiver. Makes the play when the ball comes his way. … Quick. He cuts well and can find an opening without a problem. … Works hard and isn't afraid of hitting.
Negatives: Not really fast enough to be a dangerous receiver against the more athletic linebackers. … Not consistent. Will disappear at times. … Not a blocker. He'll try and is willing, but he's not going to shove anyone around.

8. Anthony McCoy, USC 6-5, 259
Post-Combine Skinny: Disappointing and the mediocre numbers might confirm his lack of commitment. The 19 reps weren't good enough for a player of his size, and the 4.79 in the 40 was way, way too slow. He didn't help himself.
Pre-Combine Rank: 6
Positives: Is a big, solid target who's reliable on key downs. … One of the better downfield blockers among the top tight ends. … Nice hands and makes up for quarterback mistakes.
Negatives: Heartbreaking. It's there to be a ten-year pro, but he doesn't bring it play in and play out. … Not fast. Can get open, but he won't blow past anyone. … A good run blocker, but not a great one.

9. Dennis Pitta, BYU 6-5, 245
Post-Combine Skinny: He did a great job to make himself seem like a better prospect. The 27 reps on the bench were among the best of the tight ends and he ran well blowing around the agility drills with a TE best 4.17 in the shuttle. The 4.63 40 was good enough, and he caught the ball well.
Pre-Combine Rank: 11
Positives: A pure receiver. He fits the BYU mold and was used short, deep, and everywhere in between. … Great hands. Swallows up everything his way. … Mature. Saw a ton of time and spent a few years on a Church mission. He's ready to go from Day One.
Negatives: Not a blocker. He won't hit anyone at the next level. … A BYU tight end. He'll have to be retrained and coached to change his technique. … Doesn't have NFL speed or NFL size. Will be purely a receiver in two tight end sets.

10. Tony Moeaki, Iowa 6-3, 245
Post-Combine Skinny: Considered a strong receiver coming into the draft, he came up with a decent workout moving around well and running a not-bad 4.69. If you liked him before for what he's good at, then you like him even more now.
Pre-Combine Rank: 14
Positives: Potentially the best receiving tight end in the draft. … Busts his tail. He's the type of player who sticks around by working for it. … Terrific hands. Can be used like a big wide receiver.
Negatives: Not as fast as he needs to be. … Not a top blocker. He tries hard, but he's not going to shove anyone around. … Major durability concerns. Was seemingly always hurt.

11. Nate Byham, Pitt 6-4, 268
Post-Combine Skinny: His job in Indy wasn't to be a great athlete it was to be strong. He didn't lift, and he wasn't athletic in any way. However, there's no questioning his blocking ability, and he'll have to hit someone to make up for the lack of mobility.
Pre-Combine Rank: 9
Positives: Blocking. He's arguably the best run blocking tight end in the draft. … Decent enough hands to be counted on when needed. … A better route runner than he'll get credit for.
Negatives: Not a great athlete. He's limited to being a blocker and a short-range target. … Wasn't used enough as a receiver and will rarely get passes his way at the next level. … Not going to be quick off the line and doesn't cut well.

12. Cody Slate, Marshall
Not Invited To The Combine

13. Jeron Mastrud, Kansas State 6-5, 256
Post-Combine Skinny: He didn't work out and will need to show some sort of running ability to get anyone excited about drafting him. He didn't measure all that well with average size among the tight ends.
Pre-Combine Rank: 12
Positives: A smart player and a reliable route runner. He doesn't make mistakes. … Soft hands. Eats up everything that comes his way. … A strong, willing blocker and is great a getting downfield to make a hit.
Negatives: Not fast. Was able to get open at the college level, but he won't have the same luck in the NFL. … Not an elite athlete. Might be used mostly as a blocker. … Wasn't nearly as good without Josh Freeman throwing to him.

14. Michael Hoomanawanui, Illinois 6-4, 264
Post-Combine Skinny: He didn't run, which was disappointing considering he's considered a top receiving tight end prospect. The 25 reps, though, kept in line with the good lifts by the Illinois players. He measured well with great size and long arms.
Pre-Combine Rank: 15
Positives: A wide receiver in a tight end's body. … Moves well for his size with great agility. … Isn't afraid to block. Worked well for the Illinois rushing attack.
Negatives: Dinged up a bit too much. Had ankle problems in what was supposed to be a big final year. … Not great at getting separation considering his quickness. … Not a blazer. Fast enough to get by, but he needs to be covered by a linebacker and not a safety.

15. Andrew Quarless, Penn State 6-4, 254
Post-Combine Skinny: He needed to show that he could move well, and while he wasn't explosive, the 4.69 wasn't too bad. The 23 reps were disappointing, but he made his money by getting in under 4.7.
Pre-Combine Rank: 16
Positives: The receiving talent has always been there. He could be a much better pro than a collegian. … Decent athlete. No problems getting around on the field. … Terrific hands. Extremely reliable when the ball is in his range.
Negatives: Issues. He had off-the-field problems and character questions are going to be a knock. … Not exactly a gym rat type. Might need a fire lit under him. … Not a drive blocker and won't give anyone a shove in the running game.

16. Clay Harbor, Missouri State 6-3, 252
Post-Combine Skinny: He took advantage of the opportunity and ran with it. He needed to blow up the drills, and while he wasn't special, he was more than good enough to get on the lists of top tight ends with a nice 4.69 40, an amazing 30 reps on the bench, ad tremendous 40" vertical, and he looked the part by cutting well and looking smooth.
Pre-Combine Rank: Not Ranked
Positives: A pure H-Back who moves extremely well. … A solid blocker who's good enough to be used as a fullback as well as a tight end. … Great hands when in traffic. Isn't afraid to get popped.
Negatives: Takes a while to get moving. Not speedy off the blocks. … Not big. Built like a fullback and not a tight end. … Fine against athletic speed rushers, but not special laterally in pass protection.

17. Colin Peek, Alabama 6-5, 254
Post-Combine Skinny: He didn't run and the 19 reps on the bench were no big deal. He was able to show off at the Senior Bowl and didn't need to do much, but getting more numbers on him will be a must for him to move out of the late rounds.
Pre-Combine Rank: 13
Positives: Clutch around the goal line and built a reputation for making big plays at big time. … A solid blocker. Not elite, but good enough to be a plus. … Fights his way to get open. Is always working.
Negatives: Inconsistent as a receiver. He has soft hands but tends to drop too many catchable balls. … A stick in the mud. He's not going to run by anyone. … A decent athlete, but hardly a special one.

18. Scott Sicko, New Hampshire
Not Invited To The Combine

19. Nathan Overbay, Eastern Washington
Not Invited To The Combine

20. Logan Paulsen, UCLA
Not Invited To The Combine

21. Jeff Cumberland, Illinois
Not Invited To The Combine

22. Jim Dray, Stanford 6-5, 246
Post-Combine Skinny: He was among the weaker tight ends on the bench and didn't show much else because of a knee problem. He'll need to come up with another workout to get into the discussion of the draftable tight ends.
Pre-Combine Rank: 21
Positives: A great blocker for his frame. Is a willing hitter who doesn't lose his man. … Has the size to get bigger. The frame would support 15 more pounds without a problem. … A nice route runner. He's great at working to get open.
Negatives: A bit too thin. Not built like a bullying NFL tight end. … Knee concerns. It took a while to get back from a bad injury. … Not a top receiver. He can work into being one, but he's limited as a pass catcher.

23. Mickey Shuler, Penn State
Not Invited To The Combine

24. Michael Palmer, Clemson
Not Invited To The Combine

25. Steve Maneri, Temple
Not Invited To The Combine

26. Caz Piurowski, Florida State
Not Invited To The Combine

NR. Brody Eldridge, Oklahoma 6-5, 261
Post-Combine Skinny: Not able to do much because of a knee problem, he measured as big as any tight end in the draft. If he could run just once before the draft, he could be drafted late because of his blocking.
Pre-Combine Rank: Not Ranked
Positives: Filled in nicely with Jermaine Gresham out. … Very big with surprising speed. Has a nice combination of raw skills. … A strong blocker. He has the bulk to work in a rushing offense and be a three-down tight end.
Negatives: Great blocker, not an NFL receiver. … Knee concerns. Got banged up late last year. … Health concerns over the course of his career. Broke his ankle in high school.

NR. Dedrick Epps, Miami 6-3, 250
Post-Combine Skinny: Not able to run because of a knee injury, and while he didn't look like anything more than a big fullback, he only came up with 19 reps. It would've been nice if he could've been stronger to suggest he could be more of a blocker.
Pre-Combine Rank: Not Ranked
Positives: Good, functional speed and is good at getting open. … Athletic. Was used in a variety of ways. … A natural pass catcher who's good on key downs.
Negatives: Injury concerns. Suffered a torn ACL. … Not particularly big and not particularly fast. Average overall skills. … Not fast out of the blocks. Will need to be used as more of a blocker.

NR. Riar Geer, Colorado 6-3, 250
Post-Combine Skinny: Not good. He showed now NFL speed, running a 4.98, and no strength with a pathetic 13 reps on the bench. He cut well in the shuttle drill and he moved fine, but he measured too slow and too weak to get excited about drafting.
Pre-Combine Rank: Not Ranked
Positives: Looks the part with good size and nice skills. … Was the only viable receiver for a time in a bad Colorado offense. … A nice blocker. Doesn't take a play off even when he's not involved.
Negatives: Good all-around skills, but not great all-around basics. Not elite in any way. Slow. … Not the best athlete. Good enough to get open, but he'll be erased by any NFL defender who can move. … Missed time hurt. He won't play a full 16 games.