Checking in from the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis
The Kansas City Chiefs are doing their due diligence on every position group at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, which is why it’s not a surprise to hear that some of this year’s top tight ends have said they’ve already met with the Chiefs.
The Chiefs currently have three tight ends on their roster—
As the guys have spent the past few days competing at the Combine, here are a few quotes from some of the top tight ends in this draft:
Penn State’s Mike Gesicki
“When the ball’s in the air, I consider it mine. I don’t believe in the whole 50-50 ball. It’s more of a—from my perspective—80/20, in that range. Growing up, I played a whole lot of basketball. In high school, I played volleyball. Jumping has always come pretty natural for me, and it’s only improved as time’s gone on. It’s something that I’ve been able to implement into my game on the field.”
“I started playing football in eighth grade and I played quarterback my eighth-grade and freshman years. My sophomore year, there was a player that was better than me at quarterback. To be honest, growing up, I thought I would be the next Vince Carter in basketball. That was my thing. I’m just going to dunk on people. I’m going to keep playing basketball. I was thinking about playing AAU and focusing on basketball, and my coach told me, ‘Hey, man, let’s try you at wide receiver.’ We were going to a 7-on-7. I was like, ‘All right, yeah, we’ll give it a shot.’ I got there and it turns out I like catching touchdowns. It’s fun.”
“I had offers for basketball coming out of high school – more Patriot League schools like Bucknell, Colgate and Lehigh. My first offer from Penn State actually http://www.aaronrodgersuniforms.com/Bart-Starr-Jersey came on the volleyball court. Their coach reached out to me my sophomore year of high school and told me if I was interested there, they had a spot for me.”
“I pride myself on my work ethic, so I’m going to outwork anybody and everybody in order to get to where I need to go and to achieve what I want to achieve.”
Indiana’s Ian Thomas
“I’m athletic, fast. I’m a big guy. A big player in t Bart Starr Jersey Mitchell and Ness he block game—just an athletic, bigger body on the field.”
“I think my receiving skills are great. I’m a big mismatch against linebackers and safeties.”
“I think teams are looking for complete, overall tight ends. I think I fit the role as more of a traditional tight end blocking and catching because of my body size.”
South Dakota State’s Dallas Goedert
“I want to be a three-down tight end in the league. So, I’m going to have to be able to block. I didn’t do a ton of blocking at South Dakota State, but when I did, I put my head in there. I have to work on it a little bit, but I’ve been doing it already when I’ve been training. I plan on getting a lot better at it and being one of the best tight ends in the league.”
“I want to come into the league and play right away. I want to have an impact on the team right when I get there. I think I have that capability. But should I go someplace that has a veteran tight end, I’d be honored to learn under somebody else that has the skillset to do everything.”
“(A team that drafts me) is getting a playmaker, a tough guy that’s hard-working. He’s going to be there. He’s going to make the plays that are needed. It’s third-and-6, I’m going to be the guy the quarterback goes to. I’m going to create separation, I’m going to make contested catches. I’m going to a red zone mismatch, and I’m going to be a three-down tight end. I’m always going to be on the field.”
– On coming from the Missouri Valley Conference and whether it’s an issue.
“My biggest response is Carson Wentz and David Johnson. They both came out of my conference. I’m not worried about that jump. It’s football. Football doesn’t really change much. It’ll be better competition. But I’m excited for that challenge.”
– On talking with Chiefs’ tight ends coach Tom Melvin this week.
“It went really good. I really like the guy. The way he talked, he obviously knows the game really well, and the way he uses Travis Kelce I think I’d be a good fit there, too.”
Wisconsin’s Troy Fumagalli
– On being seen as a “clutch” player.
“That’s one thing I’ve always taken pride in. Especially, we’ve had a young quarterback the last couple of years, being Women’s Nike Green Bay Packers Bart Starr Elite Team Color Jersey Green reliable, being there whenever he needed me. That’s something I’ve always taken pride in, clutch situations. I always wanted to be that guy, I wanted the ball in my hands, I want to make a play for them.”
“I’d say I’m an all-around tight end. That’s one thing that playing in Wisconsin you had to be able to do and I was lucky enough to play under coach Chryst and be able to do it. I think I can be a three-down tight end. That’s what I do best.”
South Carolina’s Hayden Hurst
“In high school I was lucky enough to be drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 17th round of the Major League Baseball draft. I was drafted as a pitcher, played three years in their system. Struggled through a lot of things, developed the yips, kind of lost my fastball. I battled with that for three years, tried a lot of things to right that. But I ended up calling one of my good buddies from back home and he got me in contact with Steve Spurrier, Jr., which helped me walk on at South Carolina.”
– On his best trait.
“I think it’s my sure-handedness. I dropped one pass in three years at South Carolina. My speed — I hope to run in the 4.5s. That’s what I’ve been training at. And just my physicality. My run blocking can obviously be better; I think you can say that about a lot of things, but I think my physicality and my want-to in the blocking game also separates me.”
“When I’m flexed out wide, I’m able to change the game for our offense. Whatever team drafts me, I think that’s what I specialize in. In the run game, I love being physical, I love hitting peopl Mitchell and Ness 15 Bart Starr Green Bay Packers Authentic Team Color Throwback Jersey 1969 e—that’s why I made the switch from baseball. If I can just sharpen up some techniques, I think I’m going to be able my change and take it to the next level.”
Oklahoma’s Mark Andrews
“I have a ton of experience in running routes and receiving. I think it is one of my strong points in my game. The good thing about the NFL is you get so much time and you’re able to work on the blocking. You get so much more reps at it, which I am excited about. I am excited to learn and get better.”
“You have to be hungry. You have to be willing to do whatever you have to do. I want to play special teams and earn my way into that job. I want to earn the coaches trust. I don’t just want to be given a job. I like to have the competition. Even if there is a NFL veteran, I am not just going to sit on the bench, I am going to play.”
– On tight ends he watches.
“One person is one of the greatest tight ends of all-time, Jason Witten. Great ability to catch the ball. Great ability to create separation and has worked on his blocking a lot. Definitely one of the premiere blocking tight ends now. Then there’s guys like Travis Kelce, just a dog. He goes out there and plays every day. Just an incredible athlete and is fun to watch. Those guys are great to emulate and try and be the best. You look at them to try to be the best for sure.”
“I love this position. You get the best of both worlds. You get to be a lineman and put your hand in the dirt and you get to be a receiver.”