Call me old fashioned, but I like tight ends that can block. I know that seems like a thing of the past for the most part these days, but I still yearn for the good old days of in-line tight ends that contribute in the running game.
That’s probably why I like Jackson Harris so much. He could easily be a player that lines up out wide, but he’s more of a traditional in-line “Y” tight end.
Harris has good size. He is looks leaner than his listed weight, but should be able to add weight and strength over time. He’s a good athlete that moves well for his size. He doesn’t have dynamic speed for the position, but shows good short-area quickness.
Harris lines up primarily as a in-line tight end. He is athletic enough to flex out if asked and is a very good receiver on short and intermediate routes. His routes need to be a little sharper, but that is something he should easily be able to improve. He doesn’t have enough speed to threaten down the seam.
He is natural hands catcher that catches the ball away from his body. He does a good job of adjusting to the ball in the air.
His best trait is that he gets after it as a blocker. He fits his hands inside and drives defenders. One of the few tight ends I have seen that looks to finish. He is doing it against smaller players, but the effort it outstanding. I don’t know if he’ll ever have the size to be a dominating blocker, but he is definitely going to be an effective one.
Harris’ best fit is as an in-line tight end that can assist in the running game and also that uses him as an H-back type for wham blocks.
Harris does not have the dynamic speed to be a flashy tight end that earns headlines with his play, but he is someone who should develop into a consistent performer as a pass catcher and run blocker. His ability and willingness to block should get him on the field earlier than most before he becomes a very good starting tight end.
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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.