Scouting Report: Tyrone Wheatley Jr. – Tight End

I can remember playing football at recess with my friends and pretending I was Michigan tailback Tyrone Wheatley. Thinking back on that, it seems pretty surreal that I am now watching his son get ready to enter his senior season as a highly recruited tight end.

Tyrone Wheatley Jr. is a different type of player than his father was, but he’s a talented player who is only going to improve.

Height: 6’6″

Weight: 240

Athletic ability/measurables

Wheatley has the size to play tight end at the college level tomorrow. Once he gets going, he can really get moving, but he’s not a quick twitch athlete.

Skills/technique

Wheatley is a massive target that can get to footballs that others can’t because of his height and reach. He’s a size mismatch for anyone who tries to cover him. He’s also not an easy player to tackle that can run through arm tackles.

He’s not a player who is going to threaten with his speed over the top of a defense, but can be an effective player on short or intermediate routes.

He has the potential to be a dominant in-line blocker. He doesn’t play against strong competition and often physically dominates defenders as a blocker. The one issue with Wheatley is the consistency in which he finishes his blocks. There are often times he doesn’t sustain the block as long as he should.

My Dad had a simple mantra when it came to blocking: hit, fit, and finish. It’s impossible to get the finish without the first two. Wheatley will hit, but he doesn’t always fit and therefore he can’t finish his block. It all has to do with technique and if he can improve on it, he has the chance to be a dominant player as a run blocker at the next level.

Scheme fit

Wheatley will at times line up in the slot for his high school, but he should be playing as a tradition in-line “Y” tight end at the next level.

Potential

It’s almost fitting that Wheatley is more of a traditional tight end. He’s the kind of tight end that used to block for his father at Michigan. I don’t think Wheatley will ever put up the receiving numbers in college to garner All-American honors, but he could possibly developing into one of the best blocking tight ends in the nation.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals SDE 16 4
Scout DE 18 4
247 Sports TE 10 4
ESPN TE-Y 11 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Devonaire Clarington – 2015 Tight End

I remember reading an interview with Champagnat Catholic tight end Devonaire Clarington a couple of months ago where he stated he was the best tight end in this recruiting class. I would have loved to confirm what he said at the time, but unfortunately he did not have any film from his junior year available for me to watch. I kept checking back to see if anything changed in that department, but unfortunately I didn’t have any luck finding it.

At least until today. I can’t definitively say that Clarington is the best tight end in this class, but he is right up near the top out of the players I’ve seen at his position thus far.

Height: 6’6″

Weight: 222

Athletic ability/measurables

Clarington is such a tall target with giant levers to help him snatch the ball higher than anyone else who might be covering him. He is extremely slim right now, but doesn’t have a massive frame. If he can get up over 240 in college then that would be ideal.

He’s not explosive in terms of quickness, but he is fast and can eat up a ton of ground with his long strides.

Skills/technique

Clarington lines up mostly out wide and is an extremely tough player to cover one on one. He gets off press coverage well and is a solid route runner. If you put that together with his size, not many smaller corners can match up with him.

When the ball is in the air, he’s going to win the jump ball most of the time because of his height and the fact that he will go and get the ball at its highest point. He is capable of making the spectacular catch.

As an in-line blocker, he will block aggressively and is willing, but his technique is really raw. He’ll get eaten up by linebackers and defensive lineman early in his career unless he improves it drastically.

For Clarington though, I don’t see it being a huge issue because he is much more of a Jimmy Graham type of player at the position that should rarely line up in-line.

Scheme fit

Clarington is a spread tight end that should be put into a position where he can match up against smaller safeties and corners out wide. He should be a nightmare for them to try and cover without help.

Potential

Clarington has the potential develop into a Mackey award candidate because of his receiving ability, but he’s got a lot of work to do to become a complete tight end. If he goes to the right system though, he may never have to develop some of the in-line blocking skills that a typical adequate blocking tight end would need. If he goes to the right fit, he can be a dangerous option in an offense.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals TE 5 4
Scout TE 7 4
247 Sports TE 5 4
ESPN TE-H 1 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Hale Hentges – 2015 Tight End

When people think of basketball players playing football, they think tight end. More specifically, they think of receiving tight ends.

Hale Hentges is a pretty good basketball player so everyone’s first thought for someone his size would be for him to be a good receiving tight end. And he is. But he’s also a lot more than that. The Helias High product is a complete tight end that can do everything that is asked of him.

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 230

Athletic ability/measurables

Hentges has the size and frame that projects perfectly for an in-line tight end. There shouldn’t be an issue with him adding weight once he gets to college. He has deceptive speed and is a good athlete.

Skills/technique

As a receiver, Hentges is a tough matchup for any team to try and cover. He’s athletic enough to beat linebackers up the seam and is too big for defensive backs to handle if lined up out wide. He has very natural hands and always catches the ball away from his body. Does a great job of shielding defenders and can go up and get jump balls over smaller players. He’s capable of making the spectacular catch.

Most players with his receiving skills do not have the blocking acumen to match, but that is not the case with Hentges. He is a tenacious blocker that gets underneath a defender and will drive him to the ground. There is a nastiness to how he blocks that is rare in this day and age of hybrid tight ends. He flashes the ability to be a dominant run blocker both in-line or lined up outside.

Scheme fit

Hentges is scheme versatile, but is too good of a run blocker to not be utilized as an in-line tight end by whatever school he ultimately chooses.

Potential

There may be other tight end recruits in this class with greater athleticism, but no one is the complete football player that Hentges is. He has the chance to play very early and start for multiple years. I would not be shocked if he ended up being the best tight end coming out of this recruiting class.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals TE 4 4
Scout TE 4 4
247 Sports TE 4 4
ESPN TE-Y 4 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Will Gragg – 2015 Tight End

There isn’t a deep recruiting pool for tight ends in 2015 so that means the good ones are very much in-demand. Will Gragg is one of the better ones in this class and he’s been offered by just about every top program in the nation.

Whoever ends up landing the Pine Bluff, Arkansas native is going to get a nice intermediate target in the passing game over the next four years.

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 247

Athletic ability/measurables

Gragg has solid speed for his size, but isn’t going to threaten anyone deep with it. He’s a very coordinated kid with good size, but will need to get stronger.

Skills/technique

Gragg has very good hands and really got to show it off because he didn’t have the luxury of catching a lot of footballs in-stride. He adjusts well to the ball when it’s in the air and uses his body well to shield defenders in traffic. He can go up and get the ball at it’s highest point as well, which makes him a tough one on one matchup in the redzone.

He wasn’t asked to run a lot of complicated routes. He mostly just ran hot routes over the middle, both inside and outside screens, short curl routes, and the occasional redzone fade route. He didn’t run any vertical routes. A lot of that probably had to do with his quarterback, but part of it is because he have the speed to do a ton of damage up the seam. He’s more suited to short and intermediate routes where he has the chance to break some tackles.

The tape of him blocking is extremely limited. He has the size and athleticism to be an above average blocker, but he mostly lined up out wide rather than in-line. It will be interesting to see how teams use him at the next level.

Scheme fit

He has the size to be play more in-line, but doesn’t have a ton of experience lining up there. I do think that whatever team he signs with will line him up there the majority of the time.

Potential

Gragg has the potential to be a very good receiving tight end that can be more than a safety blanket for his quarterback. I don’t think he’ll play a lot early because of the adjustment he’ll have to make as a blocker, but once he gets stronger and more acclimated to that role, I think he can develop into a very good starter for multiple years.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals TE 8 4
Scout TE 5 4
247 Sports TE 3 4
ESPN TE 7 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Miles Boykin – 2015 Wide Receiver

Tweener is a word used often to describe prospects that are being dissected before the NFL Draft. With college football recruiting it’s a little different. You can project more because these players are all basically just kids and it’s hard to tell how much bigger and faster they can become over the next four or five years.

Miles Boykin is one of those prospects you have to project to guess how he’ll develop. Right now he’s a receiver for Providence Catholic, but he may grow into a tight end in college when all is said and done.

Height: 6’5″

Weight: 212

Athletic ability/measurables

Boykin’s obvious advantage is his size and the fact that he is very coordinated despite his size. He runs fairly well, but I’m not sure he’s quick enough to gain separation at the next level based on what I saw on tape. At the Nike camp in Chicago he did look significantly quicker though.

Skills/technique

He does a great job using his body to gain advantage over cornerbacks. He’s much bigger than them and he plays bigger. It’s also evident with him as a blocker out there where he is a willing blocker and could potentially be dominant against lighter defensive backs.

He is a huge threat in the red zone and would be a tough match up for any defender. Any type of jump ball situation, Boykin has a huge advantage. He really did a nice job against press coverage. He’s a natural hands catcher as well, so he’s able to make the tough catches that are above the defenders head where only he has a chance to get the ball.

While he can win with his body and using it to shield defenders, he’s just not sudden enough in my opinion to gain separation on a lot of routes. So while he is a big time red zone target, quarterbacks may be forced to make very tight throws if he’s matched up against corners in college.

Scheme fit

I think Boykin’s best chance to succeed on a regular basis is as a Joker/move tight end where he is matched up against linebackers and safeties. I think he can win those athletic battles.

Potential

This all depends on if Boykin can grow into that hybrid tight end that so many teams covet. If he doesn’t, he might just be another big, yet slow, wide receiver because I’m not sure he’ll have the quickness to separate versus elite corners. If he does put on that weight, I think he has the opportunity to be as good as any of the other tight ends in this recruiting class.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals WR 10 4
Scout WR 26 4
247 Sports WR 42 4
ESPN WR 35 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Chris Clark – 2015 TE

It’s not shocking anymore, but it is still amazing when a smaller school player becomes a first round pick in the NFL Draft. The odds are long for any college football player to be drafted in the NFL, but for a small school prospect the odds are even longer.

Playing football in Connecticut is basically the high school football equivalent of playing at a small school in college. Even the best players in the state aren’t getting a ton of big time offers to play college football. Chris Clark is an obvious exception. He’s got offers from a who’s who of national powers despite attending a school that does not even sound like a high school. Avon Old Farms is not exactly known as a football factory, but they’ve got a really talented tight end in Clark.

Height: 6’6″

Weight: 245

Athletic ability/measurables

You can’t teach 6’6″ 245 at 17 years old. Throw in the fact that Clark can run really well and it’s pretty obvious why he is one of the top tight ends in the nation. He’s definitely got the frame to add more weight as well.

Skills/technique

Clark flashes outstanding hands and does well catching the ball in traffic. He really shows his athleticism the way he is able to adjust to the ball in the air. He was not asked to run too many deep routes in his high school offense, but he’s got the speed to make plays down the seam.

As a blocker, I expected him to be more dominant because of the competition he is facing. He was strong enough to put some players on the ground and really displayed great effort as a blocker, but he was often too high when he made contact. The important thing for me though is that I saw a little bit of nasty in him as a blocker and the technique is something that can be worked on when he arrives on a college campus.

Scheme fit

Clark lined up a lot in-line, but I think he’s athletic enough to line up out wide as well. I do however feel that he will likely grow into a bigger tight end and would fit best in a offense that utilizes him as an in-line blocker in the run game as well as a threat in the passing game.

Potential

Clark certainly is a good player at Avon Old Farms, but it’s his potential that has got so many schools excited about him. He’s got everything you are looking for in a tight end will have the physical skills to be ready to play fairly early in his college career. I can see Clark developing into a multi-year starter for his school of choice.

Recruiting Site Position Position Rank Stars
Rivals TE 7 4
Scout TE 2 4
247 Sports TE 5 4
ESPN TE 3 4

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

 

Scouting Report: CJ Conrad – 2015 Tight End

Considering the recent crossover with basketball players developing into elite tight ends, it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that CJ Conrad is a pretty good basketball player. I didn’t see enough on film for me to say that the Keystone High School tight end is going to be the next Jimmy Graham or Antonio Gates, but I do think he has a chance to develop into a very good tight end at the college level.

Height: 6’5″

Weight: 225

Athletic ability

Conrad is a fluid athlete who runs well. I don’t see elite quickness from him on film though. He needs to fill out a bit, but has the frame to put on more weight and should easily do so after he stops playing basketball. A lot of these players in high school still play multiple sports, which is great, but it does hinder them from putting on weight at the same pace others do who only concentrate on football.

Skills/technique

He does a great job of catching the ball with his hands away from his body. He lines up a lot of the time on the outside and is thrown a lot of jump balls in the red zone, where he has a knack for going up to get the ball.

He’s not super smooth in his routes and I’d like to see him a bit sharper with his cuts, but he does a good job of creating separation with his body to shield defenders from the ball.

When he’s lined up in-line as a blocker, he’s willing and gives a solid effort. What I don’t see is any explosion from him as a blocker. Right now he just simply gets in the way and that’s okay, but I think he is capable of more.

Scheme fit

Conrad has the frame to grow into an in-line tight end in a pro-style offense and I think that will eventually suit him the best. In a spread, I can see him being an H-back type/big slot on running downs taking advantage of some size match-ups against some safeties and linebackers.

Potential

Right now, Conrad does not have the big time offers that I could see him earning over the next few months.A lot of that has to do with the types of offenses that are around college football currently. There were two flashes that I saw on film that made me think Conrad is capable of so much more as he improves at the next level. The first was an amazing diving catch that would have gained Calvin Johnson’s approval and the second was a play on defense where he broke on a ball in coverage and took a pick to the house. So he has that type of ability in him.

I think that Conrad has the potential to fit into the new breed of offenses as well as grow into a more old-school tight end. It might take him a couple of years in a strength program and getting coached up as a blocker, but I think he has the chance to emerge as a very good starting tight end for a program one day.

 

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He has also coached at the college and high school level. He is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Garrett Williams – 2015 Tight End

Garrett Williams is a football player.

I don’t mean it in the way that Jon Gruden says, “This guy is a football player!” I mean it in the way that Williams doesn’t have a defined position for First Academy High School in Orlando, Florida. He does a bit of everything for them and does it very well.

It’s easy to see why Williams earned over 20 offers. He’s a nice pickup for Clemson.

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 225

Athletic ability

I hate the term “do it all” because most of the time it’s all hyperbole, but Williams really can do it all. He lines up as a tailback, wing back, tight end, defensive end, and linebacker for his high school team. He shows solid speed as a runner, better than average burst as a pass rusher, and good strength at the point of attack as a blocker.

Skills/technique

I can see why many project him as a tight end at the next level. Williams could develop into a dangerous player after the catch based on how he runs in the open field as a high school player. It’s tough to judge his hands because he doesn’t catch a ton of balls, but he really shows a lot of potential as a blocker. His effort is outstanding and he always is working to finish his man.

As a defender, he does a good job attacking upfield, but has a tendency to engage the full man rather than an edge as a rusher. A lot of that likely has to do with him playing so many different positions so there are technical things he would need to improve on on the defensive side of the ball. All of that can easily be taught though and once he focuses on one position at the next level his improvement should be drastic.

Once he concentrates on just one position, it’s likely he’ll make a significant jump in play.

Scheme fit

It all depends what you see him as position wise at the next level. Most recruiting services are projecting him as tight end and if that’s the case, I see him as a Delanie Walker type of player and being utilized as a move tight end where some plays he’ll be on the line, in the slot, or possibly even lined up as a fullback in certain situations.

Potential

It’s always tough to project someone who plays so many roles for their team at the high school level, but Williams has really good size and the frame to put on a lot more weight.

I don’t see enough explosiveness to say he’ll be a dynamic player, but I do think he’ll develop into a very good starter for someone. He’s a big athlete who has a chance to be a nice contributor for Clemson.

Ratings

Rivals #4 TE (4 star)

Scout #9 TE (4 star)

247 Sports #12 TE (4 star)

ESPN #22 DE (4 star)

Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized Simon Fraser University. He has also coached at the college and high school level. He is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Jordan Davis – 2015 TE

Jordan Davis, from Clear Lake High School in Houston, TX, was originally committed to Florida State before switching his pledge to Texas A&M. Commitment or not, that isn’t going to stop schools from recruiting him until national signing day in 2015. He’s just too damn good for coaches to give up on the chance at having a special player that is physically ready to contribute immediately.

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 250

Athletic ability

A term that several coaches like to label players with is a “big skill” player. These players are rare and are typically tight ends or edge rushers. Jordan Davis absolutely fits into the big skill category and is a tremendous athlete who already has an NFL body.

He recently tested out a Nike camp with a 37.5 inch vertical jump and it’s not just a testing thing with him. His lower body strength is constantly displayed on the field as he is able to run through tackles after the catch and does not go to the ground easily. He also has some wiggle for a guy his size and is consistently efficient when gaining yards on screens where he has to beat cornerbacks one on one.

He doesn’t have elite speed and isn’t quite as fluid as Alize Jones is, but he’s also much bigger than Jones. It’s scary to think that a guy this big and athletic hasn’t taken a snap in his senior year yet.

Skills/technique

Davis lines up out wide for his high school team so he’s 100% a receiver out there and he certainly has receiver tools. He has shown good hands to catch the ball in the traffic and does a really nice job of adjusting to passes on fade routes where he uses his size to shield off defenders.

I would love to see him running more routes in games, but for the most part he is limited to running screens, fades, and the occasional comeback route. It’s tough to blame his high school coaches for doing anything else though because he’s so physically dominant over the players who are covering him.

He is a willing blocker who fights to get his hands inside yet doesn’t finish his blocks as consistently as he should. He has the strength and size to put a corner on his back virtually every play and is capable of so much more than mirroring a defender downfield.

Scheme fit

Davis is a player who should be able to fit into any scheme whether as an in-line tight end or split out wide. Kevin Sumlin is a smart guy and I’m sure he is telling Davis that he’ll be lining up out wide  or in the slot all the time and he’s a big enough physical mismatch out there that it would be foolish not to do so.

One of the few tight ends in this class who could likely start from day one in any scheme.

Potential

I really like Davis’ potential as a receiver and even more so as a blocker if he puts in the effort. I don’t think he’s going to be Eric Ebron, the All-American tight end from North Carolina, in terms of speed out there, but he has the chance to be a special receiver. I would not be surprised at all to one day see him as a Mackey Award candidate.

Ratings

Rivals #2 TE (4 star)

Scout #2 TE (4 star)

247 Sports #7 TE (4 star)

ESPN #3 TE-Y (4 star)

Jamie Uyeyama was a defensive lineman at Idaho State University and Simon Fraser University. He has also coached at the college and high school level. He is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.

Scouting Report: Alize Jones – 2015 TE

Las Vegas isn’t exactly known for its high school football, but Bishop Gorman has consistently produced big time players in recent years that have become stars at the FBS level. Alize Jones is one of the next in line from Bishop Gorman and although he is currently committed to UCLA, he’ll be recruited by everyone in the nation because of his unique skill set as one of the new breed of tight end/wide receiver hybrids.

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 222

Athletic ability

Jone is a really fluid athlete who has the enough speed to run away from most linebackers and too much size for most safeties. There aren’t too many tight ends who can take a bubble screen to the house at any level and he’s shown the speed as a sophomore and junior to run away from people.

He also shows a knack for catching balls that are off target and still continue to make a play after the catch. Similar to former Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert, I can see him put into a lot of jump ball situations in the red zone because he’s shown the ability to adjust to the ball in the air against smaller defensive backs.

Skills/technique

Jones has great hands and consistently catches the ball away from his body. He doesn’t run bad routes, but I would like to see him be sharper with this as time progresses. The issue is that he often has a free release as a tight end in the film I’ve seen of him and is running free on a lot of play action passes so that doesn’t call for him to be as precise in his cuts.

Would love to tell you he is a dominant in-line blocker as well, but that’s just not a strength for him or for most young tight ends these days. At least not for the ones who have shown his ability to catch the ball. Anytime I see someone put another player flat on his back as a blocker though, it shows me he has some nasty in his game. The more repetition he gets blocking the better he will become.

Scheme fit

I think he’s a perfect spread tight end similar to Jace Amaro from Texas Tech. I can definitely see him putting on weight and developing more as a blocker. Vernon Davis from the 49ers is the perfect example of someone who should be more of a spread tight end, but has become a very solid blocker.

If a programs wants to get the most out of him though, I see him being spread out a lot as a mismatch in space as a pass catcher and a blocker against smaller defensive backs.

Potential

If UCLA uses him properly, which is always a crap shoot with any tight end prospect with the exception of certain schools that feature the tight end in their offense prominently, he can be an X-factor for them as a freshman. Jones is part of the wave of the future for the position both at the college and pro level and he has all the tools to excel. I would not be shocked at all to see him develop into an All-Conference player by his sophomore year.

Ratings

Rivals #1 TE (4 star)

Scout #1 TE (5 star)

247 Sports #1 TE (4 star)

ESPN #1 TE-Y (4 star)

Jamie Uyeyama was a defensive lineman at Idaho State University and Simon Fraser University. He has also coached at the college and high school level. He is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach). Jamie is also the former Sr. Editor, Digital Content and News for theScore.com.