2020 NFL Draft: Ranking the Tight End Prospects

With the 2020 NFL Draft closing in, certified scout Mark Morales-Smith ranks the top tight end prospects and breaks down their game.

Notre Dame TE Cole Kmet

2020 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: QB | RB | WR | TE

TE Hunter Bryant, Washington

  • Age: 21
  • Height: 6’2″
  • Weight: 248
  • 40-yard dash: 4.74

I expect Bryant to be viewed more of a big slot wideout in the NFL than a true tight end. He lacks the size and is a poor blocker. He doesn’t appear to have the strength or interest to block and at just 6’2″ doesn’t allow quarterbacks to just throw it up in the end zone. However, he does have enough speed to be a serious matchup problem for linebackers and has fantastic hands. In the right system with creative coaching, he can be a successful fantasy contributor, but it’s all but impossible to predict where he lands. He will be a name to watch this summer after he has a team.

TE Cole Kmet, Notre Dame

  • Age: 21
  • Height: 6’6″
  • Weight: 262
  • 40-yard dash: 4.7

Kmet will likely be the top tight end taken in a weak TE class. I expect he falls to the second round, but it’s possible someone grabs him very late in the first. He has a big body and long arms with a massive catch radius. He may struggle early, but most young tight ends do. Whoever drafts him will hope he fills out a bit more and can develop his game off the line. The potential is clear as a pass-catcher; however, he struggles as a blocker and also can be jammed and chipped too easily off the line.

TE Brycen Hopkins, Purdue

  • Age: 23
  • Height: 6’4
  • Weight: 245
  • 40-yard dash: 4.66

Hopkins is one of the more frustrating tight end prospects to watch in this draft. He is a solid route runner and knows how to get quick separation, which is huge on those quick plays to tight ends. His athleticism is also evident in space. The problem is he struggles mightily to catch the ball. Combine that with a lack of strength and poor body control, and you have a Day 3 pick. If you can’t catch and you can’t block, then you can’t get on the field.

TE Albert Okwuegbunam, Missouri

  • Age: 21
  • Height: 6’5
  • Weight: 258
  • 40-yard dash: 4.49

Okwuegbunam has hands down the most upside of any tight end in this draft. Unfortunately, he also has a very low floor. In this draft class, if I was looking for a pass-catching tight end, this is the player I’m targeting. I’m predicting he gets picked higher than many believe. No tight end in this draft has first- or second-round talent, and he would be my first tight end taken in the third round. The risk is worth the reward and price here. He has the size and speed to succeed with impressive body control and can dominate as an end zone threat. Fantasy owners, this is your best tight end in the draft.

The concern here seems to be toughness. The ability to block should be there physically, but he doesn’t appear to have the desire, and it’s far to easy to knock him off his routes. He also needs to be better when playing close to the line of scrimmage. Still, he would be my first tight end selected as a Fantasy owner or if I was a GM.

TE Adam Trautman, Dayton

  • Age: 23
  • Height: 6’5
  • Weight: 255
  • 40-yard dash: 4.8

Trautman may be the safest tight end in the 2020 NFL Draft. He’s your typical big-body tight end who uses his body and can fight through coverage to pull the ball down. His upside is limited. You won’t see him making big plays after the catch, and he’s a subpar blocker at this point. There are also concerns about his level of competition as he was a physical mismatch for most defenders he faced. Making the jump to the next level could prove difficult. Nonetheless, I view him as a lock to, at the very least, be able to use his body and ball skills to score in the red zone.

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