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2012 NFL Draft: Tight End Rankings

The top 2012 tight end prospects available for the 2012 NFL Draft in the order in which I believe they will be drafted. * - denotes 2013 prospect.

This page was last updated November 4, 2011. Follow me @walterfootball for updates.

By Charlie Campbell.

2014 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | 3-4 DE | NT | 3-4 OLB | 4-3 OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2015 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K

2016 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C |

  1. Dwayne Allen*, TE, Clemson
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 255.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.65.
    Projected Round (2012): 1-2.

    11/4/11: Allen is putting together an excellent senior season. He has been a red zone force for Clemson, and is capable of doing more, if only the team were to utilize him more. Allen has totaled 37 receptions for 464 yards and five scores. He has been a good run blocker for the Tigers.

    Former teammate and current Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Da'Quan Bowers told in a Monday Morning Draft column that Allen made it a point to go against Bowers in practice to improve his blocking, and that the two pushed each other to become better football players. When that comes out in the interview process, coaches will love it, and that could push Allen's stock up higher. Being the top tight end could cause a needy team to reach for him late in the first.

    8/19/11: Of the tight ends at the top of the 2011 draft class entering the season, Dwayne Allen is the biggest-bodied player with a prowess for blocking. Last year, he did a good job as a blocker for Andre Ellington among others. At the same time, Allen is not a slouch as a receiver. He caught 31 passes for 356 yards, the most ever for a sophomore tight end at Clemson. Allen enters the year as a solid second-rounder.

  2. Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 248.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.79.
    Projected Round (2012): 3.

    11/4/11: Fleener is a dangerous receiver for quarterback Andrew Luck. Thus far in 2011, he has 18 receptions for 405 yards and seven touchdowns. Fleener runs good routes and is adept at exploiting the deep middle of the field on seam routes. He should be a good fit in many pro offenses.

    8/19/11: Coby Fleener is another well-rounded tight end who run blocks well and is a quality receiver. He caught 28 receptions for 434 yards and seven touchdowns in 2010. Fleener should benefit from Andrew Luck returning for another season.

  3. Tyler Eifert*, TE, Notre Dame
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 242.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.70.
    Projected Round (2012): 3-4.

    11/4/11: Eifert has been consistent and effective for Notre Dame this season. He has 40 receptions for 446 yards and three touchdowns. With the weak class of tight ends, it will be interesting to see if Eifert declares early for the NFL.

    8/19/11: Tyler Eifert replaced Kyle Rudolph as the Fighting Irish's starting tight end after Rudolph's season-ending injury. Eifert went on to have a solid debut with 27 receptions for 352 yards and two touchdowns. He has shown flashes as a good blocker and receiver.

  4. Orson Charles*, TE, Georgia
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 230.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.66.
    Projected Round (2012): 3-4.

    11/4/11: Charles is having a good season as a receiver with 26 receptions for 330 yards and four touchdowns. He had a big game to open the season against Boise State with six receptions for 109 yards and a touchdown. Even though Charles was held without a catch, he showed some good blocking against South Carolina. Charles would probably be better off returning for his senior season and improving. He still needs to add more weight.

    8/19/11: Orson Charles is a receiving tight end with the potential to produce big plays. He has averaged 16 yards per catch in his career. Charles caught 26 passes for 422 yards and two touchdowns as a sophomore. In 2009, he had 23 receptions for 374 yards and three touchdowns. Charles is a good route-runner who is tough for linebackers and safeties to defend running downfield. He should produce more in 2011 with an improving Aaron Murray at quarterback.

    On the negative side, Charles is going to need to add bulk and improve his blocking in order to be an every-down tight end in the NFL. If he doesn't, he will primarily be a backup to rotate into the game in passing situations.

  5. George Bryan, TE, N.C. State
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 265.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.77.
    Projected Round (2012): 4.

    11/4/11: Bryan has 13 receptions for 130 yards and two touchdowns in eight games thus far. He has been a good blocker this season and could be one of the better blocking tight ends in this draft class.

    8/19/11: George Bryan is an underrated tight end who needs to be a bigger part of the game plan. Similar to Luke Stocker at Tennessee, he is capable of producing more if given the opportunity. Last year, Bryan had 35 receptions for 369 yards and three touchdowns. The previous season, he caught 40 passes for 422 yards and six touchdowns. Bryan has good size to be a quality blocker as well. If he is made a bigger part of the game plan and improves his receiving production, he could challenge for the second round.

  6. Michael Egnew, TE, Missouri
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 240.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.75.
    Projected Round (2012): 4.

    11/4/11: Egnew has been a disappointment this season. His production has dropped off dramatically and he doesn't look like he has the speed to be a receiving tight end in the NFL. In five games, Egnew has 30 receptions for 363 yards and two touchdowns. He had a big game against Iowa State with six receptions for 105 yards and a score. Otherwise Egnew has been quiet this season.

    8/19/11: Michael Egnew was one of the top targets for Blaine Gabbert over the past couple of years at Missouri. Egnew caught 90 passes for 762 yards, an average of 8.5 per catch, and five touchdowns. It will be a challenge for him to duplicate those numbers in 2011 without Gabbert.

  7. David Paulson, TE, Oregon
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 245.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.71.
    Projected Round (2012): 4-5.

    11/4/11: Paulson has been very quiet this season. He has 14 receptions for 168 yards and three touchdowns in eight games. Paulson could be more productive, but Oregon does not throw many passes his direction.

    8/19/11: David Paulson was a contributor as a blocker and a receiver in Oregon's high-powered offense. He was a quality blocker for running back LaMichael James. Paulson caught 24 passes for 418 yards and four touchdowns. If Paulson can improve his production and put on some more muscle, he could improve his draft status into the second round.

  8. Drake Dunsmore, TE, Northwestern
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 235.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.68.
    Projected Round (2012): 4-5.

    11/4/11: Dunsmore has been reliable for Northwestern as a pass receiver. He has 29 receptions for 328 yards and six touchdowns in 2011. Dunsmore has flashed his receiving skills and looks like an improved blocker. He had seven receptions for 112 yards and four touchdowns against Indiana. If Dunmore could add some more weight that would help his draft status.

    8/19/11: Drake Dunsmore has been an effective receiver for the Wildcats. Last year, he hauled in 40 passes for 381 yards and five touchdowns. Those numbers were down slightly from 2009, when Dunsmore caught 47 passes for 523 yards and three touchdowns. For his career, he has averaged 10.7 yards per catch. Dunsmore could use some more bulk to be a blocker in the NFL.

  9. Philip Lutzenkirchen, TE, Auburn
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 250.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.70.
    Projected Round (2012): 4-5.

    11/4/11: Lutzenkirchen has 17 receptions for 158 yards and five touchdowns this season. He has been a quality blocker for Auburn running back Michael Dyer.

    8/19/11: Philip Lutzenkirchen is tied for second in Auburn history in touchdowns from a tight end with seven. Last year, he became a starter and caught 15 passes for 185 yards and five touchdowns. Lutzenkirchen also was a good blocker for Cam Newton and the Tigers' ground game. In Auburn's offense, Lutzenkirchen probably won't catch a huge amount of passes, but he is a solid contributor.

  10. Michael Williams, TE, Alabama
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 270.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.77.
    Projected Round (2012): 4-5.

    11/4/11: Williams is a good blocking tight end, and he has been a part of the potent ground game that leads Alabama. Williams has 10 receptions for 152 yards and two scores thus far in 2011.

    8/19/11: Michael Williams is a massive blocking tight end who did a good job of supporting the Crimson Tide's ground game. He caught only eight passes for 100 yards and a touchdown last season. Williams is a good athlete for such a big tight end, so he is capable of producing more as a receiver. Williams could be in for a bigger role in 2011, but NFL teams will be drawn to him for his run blocking.

  11. Rhett Ellison, TE, USC
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 245.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.72.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-6.

    11/4/11: Ellison is bit of a tight end/fullback tweener. He has 14 receptions for 84 yards and one touchdown in eight games. He's been solid in what USC has asked him to do. Ellison didn't have big production, but he played solidly against Stanford.

    8/19/11: Jordan Cameron was not the starting tight end at USC due to the presence of Rhett Ellison. Ellison caught 21 passes for 239 yards and three touchdowns last year. He is a quality receiver and did a good job of blocking for Marc Tyler and Allen Bradford. In the middle of the draft, he could be a good value tight end. With Matt Barkley coming back, Ellison could improve his production and draft stock in 2011.

  12. Ladarius Green, TE, Louisiana-Lafayette
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 230.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.70.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-6.

    11/4/11: In the first three games of the season, Green had one catch for minus-one yard. In the last six games, he has been much more productive, so for the season, has 22 receptions for 346 yards and five touchdowns.

    8/19/11: Ladarius Green is a dangerous receiver who presents mismatches to exploit a defense. Last year, he caught 44 passes for 794 yards and seven touchdowns. As a sophomore, Green had 32 catches for 533 yards, while missing three games with a neck injury. The issue for him is the same as with Charles, he needs to add muscle to be a better run-blocker at the NFL level. Otherwise, it will be hard for him to be an every-down tight end. Green has the height and frame where he should be able to add 10-15 pounds of muscle for the next level.

  13. Jake Stoneburner, TE, Ohio State
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 245.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.71.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-6.

    11/4/11: Stoneburner has 12 receptions for 150 yards and six touchdowns thus far in 2011. He had three touchdowns in the first game against Akron. Stoneburner could be even more productive if Ohio State had consistency at quarterback.

    8/19/11: Jake Stoneburner caught 21 passes for 222 yards and two touchdowns last season. The junior is a good inline blocker and also can contribute as a receiver. Given the turmoil around Ohio State, it is difficult to project how Stoneburner's production is going to be affected in 2011.

  14. Evan Rodriguez, TE, Temple
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 250.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.76.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-6.

    11/4/11: Rodriquez is Temple's leading receiver with 21 receptions for 285 yards and one touchdown in eight games. He has been reasonably consistent this season.

    8/19/11: Evan Rodriguez started out his collegiate career at West Virginia before he left for Temple. In 2009, Rodriguez caught 13 passes for 145 yards and three touchdowns. Last year, he recorded 21 receptions for 247 yards and two touchdowns.

  15. Brandon Barden, TE, Vanderbilt
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 250.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.75.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Barden has been held to six catches for 78 yards this season. He has been very quiet.

    8/19/11: Brandon Barden has been a consistent player for Vanderbilt over the past three seasons. Last year, he caught 34 receptions for 425 yards and three scores. A year earlier, Barden had 29 catches for 357 yards. As a freshman, he notched 28 catches for 209 yards and four touchdowns. Barden is a quality player who goes under the radar at Vanderbilt, and he could be a good value pick.

  16. DC Jefferson, TE, Rutgers
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 258.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.77.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Jefferson has been quiet with nine catches for 90 yards.

    8/19/11: DC Jefferson is a somewhat raw tight end, having switched to the position from quarterback during the 2009 season. Last year, as the starting tight end, he caught 10 receptions for 166 yards and a touchdown. Jefferson has some raw athletic ability, but needs to be developed.

  17. Kevin Koger, TE, Michigan
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 253.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.75.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Koger has 10 receptions for 119 yards and two touchdowns. He has done a good job blocking for Denard Robinson.

    8/19/11: Kevin Koger is a tight end who could produce more in a traditional offense. Last year, he caught 14 passes for 199 yards and two scores. Koger had 16 catches for 220 yards and two scores as a sophomore. He's had some long receptions including a 60-yard touchdown against Penn State last year, and a 41-yard catch against Michigan State in 2009. Koger has been primarily a blocking tight end for the Wolverines.

  18. Josh Chichester, TE, Louisville
    Height: 6-8. Weight: 240.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.70.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Through eight games, Chichester is second for Louisville in receiving yards with 281. He has 21 receptions and one touchdown.

    8/19/11: Josh Chichester caught 22 balls for 317 yards and five touchdowns in 2010 in his first season as a tight end. Formerly he played wide receiver, catching 17 receptions for 202 yards and two touchdowns in '09, and 30 catches for 341 yards and two touchdowns in '08. Obviously, Chichester has the physical tools to be a receiving tight end, and it will be interesting to see if he is able to be an adequate blocker. Chichester certainly has the frame to add muscle.

  19. Kyler Reed*, TE, Nebraska
    Height: 6-3. Weight: 230.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.69.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Reed has been quiet this season with eight receptions for 165 yards and zero touchdowns. He would be better off staying in school and improving his production.

    8/19/11: Kyler Reed set a Nebraska record with eight touchdown receptions last year, the most ever from a tight end. He has speed and is a playmaker with an average of 18 yards per catch. Reed caught 22 receptions for 395 yards in 2010. The Cornhuskers' staff will coach him well in blocking technique, and it will be on him to add some muscle to his frame to be a better contributor in the run game. With Mike McNeil gone from the program, Reed should get more targets this year for Nebraska.

  20. Tim Biere, TE, Kansas
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 250.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.74.
    Projected Round (2012): 5-7.

    11/4/11: Biere has 24 catches for 275 yards and one touchdown. He had a good game against Oklahoma State with seven receptions for 93 yards and a score.

    8/19/11: Tim Biere led Kansas with four touchdown receptions last season. In 2010, he totaled 19 receptions for 228 yards. It was his first season as the full-time starter for Kansas.

  21. Brian Linthicum, TE, Michigan State
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 238.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.74.
    Projected Round (2012): 6-FA.

    11/4/11: Linthicum has been very quiet this season with 11 receptions for 120 yards.

    8/19/11: Brian Linthicum was arrested this offseason, and that definitely hurts his draft stock. He is a quality blocker and had some production as a receiver last year, catching 18 passes for 230 yards. Linthicum played one season at Clemson, and in his career, he has totaled 49 receptions for 572 yards and six touchdowns with an average of 11.7 yards per reception. Linthicum needs to be productive and prove he can stay out of trouble.

  22. Anthony Miller, TE, California
    Height: 6-4. Weight: 260.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.70.
    Projected Round (2012): 6-FA.

    11/4/11: Miller has 16 receptions for 205 yards and two touchdowns. His draft stock takes a hit from the team working the ball to wide receiver Keenan Allen. Miller has the size to be a good blocker.

    8/19/11: Anthony Miller looked like he was on his way to being a quality tight end prospect when he had 26 receptions for 357 yards in 2009. Last year, his numbers fell to 13 receptions for 152 yards and one touchdown. Miller has good size to be a blocking tight end, so if he can rebound and produce in the passing game his draft stock could rise.

  23. Chris Pantale, TE, Boston College
    Height: 6-6. Weight: 248.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.71.
    Projected Round (2012): 6-FA.

    11/4/11: Pantale has been quiet with 12 receptions for 106 yards and one touchdown this season. Boston College has really struggled and that doesn't help him to stand out.

    8/19/11: Chris Pantale broke into the starting lineup as a freshman and started all 13 games in 2010. He caught 31 receptions for 338 yards and a touchdown. In his first season, Pantale had 25 receptions for 223 yards. He is a good run blocker.

  24. Danny Noble, TE, Toledo
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 236.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.71.
    Projected Round (2012): 7-FA.

    11/4/11: Noble has four catches for 75 yards and two scores.

    8/19/11: Danny Noble caught 18 receptions last season with four touchdowns. He caught 26 passes for 257 yards and a score as a sophomore. Noble needs to have a big season in order to get drafted. Otherwise, he will be an undrafted free agent who could be worth looking at in training camp.

  25. David Duran, TE, Coastal Carolina
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 240.
    Projected 40 Time: 4.82.
    Projected Round (2012): FA.

    11/4/11: Duran played in four games before a shoulder injury cost him the rest of the season. He had five catches for 75 yards.

    8/19/11: David Duran had a quality 2010 season with 34 catches for 472 yards and two scores. He transferred from Michigan State and needs another productive season in order to get drafted.

2014 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | 3-4 DE | NT | 3-4 OLB | 4-3 OLB | ILB | CB | S | K | P

2015 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C | DE | DT | NT | 3-4 OLB | 3-4 DE | OLB | ILB | CB | S | K

2016 NFL Draft Position Rankings:
QB | RB | FB | WR | TE | OT | G | C |

Leave a comment

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NIck 05-03-2014 07:36 pm (total posts: 1)
1     1

Lol. No Austin Sefarian-Jenkins (U-Dub, PAC12) in the top 24?!!!!

He was projected as the #2 or 3 Tight End if he had declared last year and now he's not even top #24?! JOKE. The guy also played college basketball and is like 6-6, 270.
AlwaysRight 01-17-2014 11:47 am (total posts: 1)
2     2

No Arthur Lynch, TE UGA? Lynch is a premiere tight-end with great speed and not to mention his athleticism. Recall the UGA vs. Missouri game this past season, Lynch hurdled a Missouri defender. He's definitely a top 10 TE in this draft.
ThisGuy 04-21-2013 08:44 pm (total posts: 1)
11     9

Have you looked up Brian Leonhardt? Many experts have this DII kid as a steal for any team that takes him and his projected as high as the number 5 TE in the draft.
Kelce on the rise??? 04-11-2013 05:14 pm (total posts: 1)
13     10

Per - Josh Norris:

2013 NFL Draft: Tyler Eifert, Travis Kelce top tight end rankings

1. Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame: Likely the only tight end prospect who will be selected in the first round, Eifert is an improving inline blocker who really makes his mark in the passing game, high-pointing balls at the catch point. Eifert did struggle to create separation in routes at Notre Dame, but he mainly faced corners, safeties and double teams. Projection: First round

2. Travis Kelce, Cincinnati: I don't expect Kelce to be the second tight end taken in this draft, but don't be surprised if his name is mentioned ahead of prospects selected above him a few years down the line. A feisty blocker with an inline frame and a growing comfort in space, Kelce has everything you want on the field. Projection: Third round

3. Vance McDonald, Rice: McDonald is an interesting projection, mainly because of his focused slot receiving role in college. From that spot, he was an aggressive blocker with good anticipation and receiving prowess, but will that blocking success translate to an inline position? McDonald needs to eliminate the drops, as well. Projection: Second round

4. Jordan Reed, Florida: Obviously, people are going to compare Reed to former Gators TE Aaron Hernandez. While the two do indeed share some of the same movement skills, the latter was a much more finished product leaving Florida. Reed could flourish as a "Joker" receiving tight end. Projection: Third round

5. Zach Ertz, Stanford: Just like Eifert, Ertz lined up both inline and against defensive backs on the edge, but he lacks the quick-twitch flashes of his Notre Dame counterpart. Fluidity is nice to have, but I wonder if Ertz has any burst to his game. He needs to improve as a blocker, too. Projection: Second round

6. Gavin Escobar, San Diego State: Somewhat similarly to Ertz, there's very little suddenness to Escobar's game. I love how he catches everything with his hands away from his body, but beyond straight-line seam routes, I didn't see Escobar separate on his own. He will need to be a dominant receiver in tight coverage. Projection: Second round

7. Kyle Juszczyk, Harvard: More of a fullback than any other prospect on this list, Juszczyk was snubbed from the NFL Scouting Combine, but he was stellar in a lead-blocking role at the Senior Bowl. That willingness to be aggressive at the point of attack was slightly surprising, considering Juszczyk was frequently used as a receiver at Harvard. Projection: Fourth round

8. Nick Kasa, Colorado: The former defensive end is a naturally aggressive player whose best trait at this point is blocking. However, Kasa displays flashes of rapidly improving receiving ability and possesses underrated straight-line speed down the seam. More time at the position will only allow him to become more comfortable. Projection: Fourth round
Pharmd387 03-23-2013 03:23 am (total posts: 1)
9     19

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10     10

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Triffe 03-16-2013 02:41 am (total posts: 1)
9     12

Escobar and reed need to be moved down to 10 and 11
gotti03 02-23-2013 07:56 am (total posts: 1)
318     11

r u serious justice cunningham not in the top ten where is your brains at watch dome film
B 02-18-2013 10:07 pm (total posts: 1)
109     11

You need to add Ryan Griffin TE from connecticut. 6-6, 247 and I'm betting he runs between 4.5-4.6.
Mock Draft of Josh Norris of Rotoworld (NBC Sports Opinion) 02-12-2013 05:58 pm (total posts: 4)
31     12

Let's see who Norris is picking to go in the first...

"30. Atlanta Falcons -- TE Travis Kelce, Cincinnati

This will surprise some, but as an inline option I prefer Kelce to Eifert. I need to give credit to Dane Brugler of CBS Sports for calling Kelce the class
Kelce predicted as possibly first TE taken... 02-12-2013 05:51 pm (total posts: 4)
29     12

Man if he ends up being the first TE off the board just think of how incredibly dumb (and pridefully bitter for most of the season refusing to recognize him as even a prospect despite the outcry of numerous fans).
Pancake Block 02-11-2013 04:08 am (total posts: 1)
11     42

Wonder if Dion Sims or Michael Williams could be converted into LTs? Sims only needs 15 lbs to hit 300 and Williams abour 30 lbs.
Rice Insider 02-08-2013 03:39 pm (total posts: 1)
105     31

Vance McDonald wasn't even the best tight end on Rice University's team.
poor work ethic, drops to many balls, garbage blocker

Luke Willson is an all around player
Reliable hands, blocks well, very coachable. Draft him and you won't be sorry.
FullBacks 02-01-2013 07:07 pm (total posts: 1)
12     14

Whatever happened to the Harvard FB? He's at least as good as Pryor
Alan C 01-21-2013 07:13 pm (total posts: 1)
38     15

You guys better not sleep on Vance McDonald from Rice. He's gonna shoot up the draft board. Book it!

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