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Colts 2020 TE situation


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Lot's of discussion on TEs lately, or perhaps lack there of.

 

Anyway, started deep diving a bit and figured I'd share some of what I found via the google machine.

 

The TLDR, is Jack is a lock, MAC and Burton are very likely. We're looking at several others, but most are pretty meh with the exception of a couple interesting wildcards (Clark and Green). If Clark can catch the ball, I'd love to put him on the PS for development for a year or two. Koyak working out might make some ND homers like me a bit interested.

 

Locks:

Jack Doyle - Not going to say much as everyone knows JD, but - Pro Bowl alt in 17 and 19. Solid all around TE. 

 

Likely:

Moe Alie Cox - 3rd year player. Basketball player convert who many thought might emerge after a decent first year. Underutilized last year due to having Ebron, and Doyle returning from injury (combined with general woes in passing game). Should benefit from Rivers, and should have every opportunity to become a true #2 TE. With the addition of Pittman at 6-4, we could see a decline in 2 TE sets which could limit opportunity. 

 

Trey Burton - Undersized tight end at 6-2, but good hands. To me, looks like a big/bully slot more than TE. Has versatility and has played every single offensive skill position throughout college and the NFL. Like MAC, with the addition of Pittman, 2 TE sets could decrease a bit limiting opportunity. Had one good year with Chicago in 2018, but hurt last season and released. Has a history with Reich on the Eagles. https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/B/BurtTr01.htm

 

Others (signed and working out)

Xavier Grimble (signed) - UDFA that bounced around before finding a little action with Pitt the last couple years. Never really took off, starting only 7 games in 5 years. USC product.

 

Ian Bunting (signed) - Second year player who bounced around last year trying to find a spot as a UDFA. Grad-transfer from Michigan to Cal, but never really found his groove at either school. 

 

Farrod Green (signed) - 2020 UDFA. Interesting prospect. Was the #1 TE at MissSt (and 4th in receiving yards), which is a team that didn't have great QB play.Good blocker, but really an unknown/wildcard in the grand scheme of things. Good kid that spent 5 years in college, and was the team's rep for media day.

https://hailstate.com/sports/football/roster/farrod-green/5340

 

Shawn Clark (worked out this week) - 2020 UDFA. Intriguing and huge 6-8 TE from a small school (Monmouth). Primarily used as a pass catcher. Led the team, and led the conference in TE yards. Another wildcard, but definitely someone to watch. The thought of a 6-8 athletic TE is delicious. Another good kid (see his interview below).

 https://monmouthhawks.com/sports/football/roster/shawn-clark/9284

https://www.nfldraftdiamonds.com/2019/11/shawn-clark/

 

Justin Johnson (worked out this week) - 3rd year UDFA. A bit undersized at 6-3, and similar profile to Green, playing at MissSt. Personally, I prefer Green to Johnson.

https://hailstate.com/sports/football/roster/justin-johnson/4686

 

Caleb Repp (worked out this week) - 2020 UDFA. Grad transferred from Utah to Utah State last year for more playing time, and saw some success later in the season. Good height (6-5), but a bit underweight at 225. Not saying he can't improve, but if he was unable to make an impact at Utah, it's going to be an uphill battle.

https://utahstateaggies.com/sports/football/roster/caleb-repp/4906

 

Ben Koyak (worked out this week) - 5th year late round draft pick by Jax. Has had some injuries, but simply hasn't done much in 4 years in Jax. I love the kid cause he's from ND, but there's always been a running joke about his "potential" going back to ND. Great kid though. IDK, perhaps Jax was just a bad place to be for him. I'd love to see him turn the corner, but it's a long shot.

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14 minutes ago, PuntersArePeopleToo said:

@EastStreet I would like to remind MAC was injured with a hand most of the year couldnt really catch much and was blocking mostly. He toughed it out. Hopefully he is healed up and can go back to catching well

I agree. I think this is a make it or break it year for him. I like his chances.

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2 hours ago, PuntersArePeopleToo said:

@EastStreet I would like to remind MAC was injured with a hand most of the year couldnt really catch much and was blocking mostly. He toughed it out. Hopefully he is healed up and can go back to catching well

 

MAC really played well in a blocking role, which is somewhat surprising.  As a basketball convert, I initially envisioned him like other basketball convert TEs (Gates, Swoope, Jimmy Graham, Fells) and be more effective in the passing game as a receiver than a blocker.  He had that amazing 1 handed grab from Luck 2 years ago and as you pointed out, his hand was injured for a good chunk of last year -- but the fact he's become such a solid blocker in such a short time as a basketball convert is a promising one.

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54 minutes ago, HectorRoberts said:

I saw that I know nothing about him

Vollert, 6-5, 245 pounds, has spent time with the Carolina Panthers (2020), Los Angeles Chargers (2019-20), Cincinnati Bengals (2018-19) and Arizona Cardinals (2018). In 2019, he spent the entire season on the Chargers' Injured Reserve list. As a rookie in 2018, Vollert spent time on the practice squads of Cincinnati and Arizona. He was originally signed by the Cardinals as an undrafted free agent on April 30, 2018.

 

Collegiately, Vollert was a two-time All-America selection and a two-time First Team All-Big Sky choice at Weber State from 2016-17. He played in 26 games for the Wildcats and finished with 123 receptions for 1,613 yards and 12 touchdowns. In 2015, Vollert played in eight games at San Francisco City College and compiled 23 receptions for 231 yards and three touchdowns. As a freshman at San Jose State in 2014, he appeared in 11 games and registered 22 receptions for 335 yards and one touchdown. Vollert also saw action in three games on the Spartans' basketball team during the 2014-15 season.

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5 minutes ago, Dogg63 said:

Vollert, 6-5, 245 pounds, has spent time with the Carolina Panthers (2020), Los Angeles Chargers (2019-20), Cincinnati Bengals (2018-19) and Arizona Cardinals (2018). In 2019, he spent the entire season on the Chargers' Injured Reserve list. As a rookie in 2018, Vollert spent time on the practice squads of Cincinnati and Arizona. He was originally signed by the Cardinals as an undrafted free agent on April 30, 2018.

 

Collegiately, Vollert was a two-time All-America selection and a two-time First Team All-Big Sky choice at Weber State from 2016-17. He played in 26 games for the Wildcats and finished with 123 receptions for 1,613 yards and 12 touchdowns. In 2015, Vollert played in eight games at San Francisco City College and compiled 23 receptions for 231 yards and three touchdowns. As a freshman at San Jose State in 2014, he appeared in 11 games and registered 22 receptions for 335 yards and one touchdown. Vollert also saw action in three games on the Spartans' basketball team during the 2014-15 season.

So he’s a stud that hasn’t reached his potential essentially 

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44 minutes ago, PrincetonTiger said:

I wonder who will be released to make room for Vollert

On the Colts.com roster, he shows up on the Exempt list. Beat writer Joel Erickson reported, "Vollert was signed under a roster exemption, labeled commissioner's permission, which gives them a little extra flexibility."

 

Interesting how many players Ballard has scooped up who were injured last year. I saw one comment that the Colts are the "Back to the Future" team this year, because of so many guys who used to be good but either had a down year or were injured in 2019. If even a few of them get back to form, Indy's going to be very good.

 

 

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18 hours ago, HectorRoberts said:

So he’s a stud that hasn’t reached his potential essentially 

 

He's got good size and is pretty fast for a TE.  He seems to lack strength and physicality.  Not sure I'd call him a stud, as he likely played FCS instead of FBS and went undrafted and hasn't seen more than a practice squad for a reason.  Maybe if he gets stronger he can be all right... really, I think this is a camp body due to injuries we've had at TE. 

 

If you watch the Pat McAfee show where Chris Ballard recently appeared (it was on the Colts.com front page a day or 2 ago), Ballard says this season w/ covid and everything else that the front office and scouts are looking everywhere to bring in guys in a pinch in case of injuries or covid-related stuff and that now more than ever the coaches and players believe the practice squad guys have to be preparing like starters.

 

https://www.playerprofiler.com/nfl/andrew-vollart/

 

https://cardswire.usatoday.com/2018/07/05/cardinals-undrafted-rookie-profile-te-andrew-vollert/

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On 8/21/2020 at 2:30 PM, EastStreet said:

I agree. I think this is a make it or break it year for him. I like his chances.

@CurBeatElite

 

It should be. And his blocking is such a promising thing. If he can get back to catching some, he should prove to be valuable as TE2. He is also a willing guy and team first player it seems. Hopefully with the hand healed he will be able to be a part of the passing game. Even last season they said he wasnt a major part of passing game due to the hand injury on purpose.

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He signed with the Chargers on April 25th as a UDFA and was released on Aug 2nd.

 

At 6’5 and 235 pounds, Rice has adequate size for the position but his body composition resembles that of a big wide receiver over a well-rounded tight end. He’s narrow through his upper body which worries me about his blocking capabilities in the NFL but he runs with impressive power and body control after the catch.

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13 minutes ago, Dogg63 said:

 

He signed with the Chargers on April 25th as a UDFA and was released on Aug 2nd.

 

At 6’5 and 235 pounds, Rice has adequate size for the position but his body composition resembles that of a big wide receiver over a well-rounded tight end. He’s narrow through his upper body which worries me about his blocking capabilities in the NFL but he runs with impressive power and body control after the catch.

Looks like he was a record setter at Fresno State

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1 hour ago, PuntersArePeopleToo said:

@CurBeatElite

 

It should be. And his blocking is such a promising thing. If he can get back to catching some, he should prove to be valuable as TE2. He is also a willing guy and team first player it seems. Hopefully with the hand healed he will be able to be a part of the passing game. Even last season they said he wasnt a major part of passing game due to the hand injury on purpose.

 

Bad situation for him last year. Having both Doyle and Ebron to start the year. Injury. QB woes.

 

I'm pretty confident he can catch, so hoping he looks good for the rest of camp. He'd be a great success story if he could break out this year.

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5 hours ago, EastStreet said:

 

Bad situation for him last year. Having both Doyle and Ebron to start the year. Injury. QB woes.

 

I'm pretty confident he can catch, so hoping he looks good for the rest of camp. He'd be a great success story if he could break out this year.

I agree that he can catch it is just more getting back to game situation catches. Hopefully he is just healthy and good to go

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2 minutes ago, krunk said:

Id be lying if i said i didnt want a similar guy to what we had on Ebron minus the stone hands. Right now we dont have that

Not sure I'd completely disregard MAC. He's already a stud blocker, but I'm anxious to see what progress he's made as a receiver since last season. Here's some of what Reich had to say,

 

Reich was especially happy to see big No. 81 back on the practice field, however. The 6-foot-5, 267-pound Alie-Cox, who will be entering his third season on the Colts' active roster after making the transition from exclusively playing college basketball at VCU, presents all kinds of options when he's on the field, his head coach said today.

Reich said that Alie-Cox has drastically improved his route-running abilities the last couple of years, and feels "there is a lot of upside for Mo."

"I think he's just getting started," Reich added.

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34 minutes ago, Dogg63 said:

Not sure I'd completely disregard MAC. He's already a stud blocker, but I'm anxious to see what progress he's made as a receiver since last season. Here's some of what Reich had to say,

 

Reich was especially happy to see big No. 81 back on the practice field, however. The 6-foot-5, 267-pound Alie-Cox, who will be entering his third season on the Colts' active roster after making the transition from exclusively playing college basketball at VCU, presents all kinds of options when he's on the field, his head coach said today.

Reich said that Alie-Cox has drastically improved his route-running abilities the last couple of years, and feels "there is a lot of upside for Mo."

"I think he's just getting started," Reich added.

We shall see, but for right now its a bit of a mystery. I can say that usually when we throw to him he doesnt drop it much.

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Gotta stay healthy since the Colts aren't loaded with talent at the TE spot. Jack Doyle is our utility man who can do a little bit of everything well enough to earn himself the honor of being called our utility man. Burton can block. He can catch passes, but I believe he was signed here for depth and to block. Allie-Cox is our x-factor though. If Mo can see the field and show off his speed, size, and athleticism, he's the one guy who can potentially cause a defense nightmares. The Colts will need to sign or draft a TE next off-season though. 

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40 minutes ago, CanuckColt said:

The TE position is a mess.

If Doyle gets hurt we have no NFL-calibre TEs to play.

 

I disagree  if healthy  burton is a beast

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I like Doyle, Ali-Cox and Burton as our guys on the 53 because they all can block and all three can catch as well.

 

I like the new kids Green, Dafney and Vollert as well. Green seems like an underrated blocker while both Vollert and Dafney add a lot of athleticism to the position. Dafney looks like a younger version of Burton.

 

I would stash all three on the PS if I were the Colts.

 

 

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