Now its time to run through a position that requires versatility to be able to succeed. Tight ends are asked to block like lineman, and catch like receivers. They’re essential to both the ground and aerial attack of any offense. This division has lots of young players with a ton of potential at the tight end position.
If you’ve kept up with the series, you know that we start with the best and work our way down. Scoring system will remain the same, so let’s get started.
Philadelphia Eagles – 10 points
Zach Ertz is coming off a solid season racking up 9 total tds. In the playoffs Ertz really showed his skills going for 192 yards and a touchdown in 3 games. Ertz is not only a capable pass catcher, but also a good run blocker. Even though the Eagles lost Brent Celek and Trey Burton; they did an amazing job with replacing them with Dallas Goedert and Richard Rodgers. Rodgers is coming from the Packers where he served as a backup but made plays when he was asked to. Dallas Goedert on the other hand is a rookie with all the potential you could ask for. The Eagles jumped in front of the Cowboys to pick up Goedert because they knew his value. Goedert has a habit of making highlight reel catches on a day to day basis. Though he will be this team’s second string TE, he will one day push for the starter position and claim his spot as one of the best tight ends in the NFL.
New York Giants – 8 points
In the 2017 draft the Giants addressed their need at TE when they took Evan Engram. He may not have eclipsed 100 yards in any games this past year, but Engram had plenty of catches worth talking about. Engram is one of many weapons that Manning will have to choose from, but his ability to expose linebackers will set him apart from the rest. Using his size and speed will make it difficult for anyone to keep up with him. After a full season under his belt, Engram will be ready for anything defenders have in store for him. The one part where Engram struggles most, is blocking. This is where Rhett Ellison will make a name for himself. Ellison loves to get down and dirty in order to protect his quarterback. He won’t be involved in the passing game as much, but his presence will help Saquon Barkley dearly when he’s out erasing linebackers for him.
Washington Redskins – 6 points
Some may be wondering why the Redskins are this low even when they have Jordan Reed on their team. Reed is an amazing player when healthy, but he hasn’t played a full season in his entire career. However, Reed’s abilities make him a top 3 at his position. Once he proves that he’s able to stay healthy the rest of the NFC East will have their hands full. Vernon Davis is entering his 13th season, but he’ll be reuniting with his old friend Alex Smith. Smith and Davis connected on over 30 touchdowns during their time in San Francisco. Having a veteran like Davis is good for the lockeroom, but a healthy Reed is what will decide this team’s fate at the position. If they can both be on the field simultaneously, there won’t be too many defenses that stand a chance.
Dallas Cowboys – 4 points
After losing Jason Witten the Cowboys aren’t looking too secure at this position. Jeff Swaim is the projected starter for the time being. From what he’s shown, Swaim, will need a lot of work during training camp and the preseason games. The fact that he’s been with the team for a couple seasons should work to his favor. The Cowboys were very interested in Goedert, but instead had to settle for Dalton Schultz after the Eagles jumped in front of them during the draft. Schultz will serve as the Cowboys’ blocking TE considering that was his specialty at Stanford. Bryce Love benefited greatly from having Schultz taking on defensive ends and paving the way to the glory land. His big body and hands also make him a favorable target for Dak in the middle of the field. Rico Gathers had flashes in the preseason but injuries quickly ended his season. The former Baylor basketball star will look to make his mark now that Witten’s spot is wide open. Gathers also has great size to match his ability to out jump anyone in the league. Overall the Cowboys will be heading into the season with hopes of someone rising to the occasion. This will be one of the better position battles going into the 2018 campaign.
The next part of the series will be on the division wide receivers. As many of you know, there is an unbelievable amount of talent amongst these teams. Stick around because we still have yet to find out who are the Beasts of the NFC East.