Let's take some time and open a discussion about this year’s tight end class. The Atlanta Falcons have been graced over the last couple years to have the best to ever play the position. Tony Gonzalez revolutionized the game; he brought the size and speed of a basketball player onto the football field. There is now an influx of hybrid players or “H-backs” in the NFL. The most famous duo is in New England getting “Gronked”.
The Atlanta Falcons are running on borrowed time with Tony G and this year I believe it is time to draft his replacement. Below is a list of the top ranked tight ends in this year’s 2012 NFL Draft and I believe there is a great chance any of these players will be on the board when the Falcons pick in the second round.
Coby Fleener 6’6’’ 247 Stanford- Fleener is the complete package, he has been the focal point in Standford’s offense under Andrew Luck. He catches everything thrown at him and is a shoe in to be a standout tight end in the NFL.
Dwayne Allen 6’3’’ 265 Clemson-The 2011 Mackey Award winner is a vertical threat waiting to happen. I honestly believe he has the most potential out of any of the tight ends in this class.
Michael Egnew 6’5’’ 252 Missouri- Egnew has been climbing the draft boards over the last couple of months. He is very similar to Dwayne Allen, but what sets him apart is the offense he is from. Missouri ran a lot from the spread, and this has allowed Egnew to develop over the last few years as a premier pass catcher.
Ladarius Green 6’6’’ 238 Louisiana Lafayette- Ladarius is another talented tight end in this year’s class. He had solid production at Louisiana Lafayette, and is built like Antonio Gates.
Orson Charles 6’2’’ 250 Georgia- Orson is a productive fast tight end from UGA. He is the most athletic tight end in this year’s draft. His upside is tremendous, but his lackluster combine sent him spiraling down to the 2nd/3rd round most likely.
This year’s draft is extremely vital to the Falcons. Atlanta cannot afford to miss on their second and third round selections. If any of these players are left late in the second round, Thomas Dimitroff would be a fool not to scarf them up. Of these five players, who do you think best fits the Atlanta Offense in 2012 and beyond?
Previous Atlanta Falcons Draft Outlooks:
Get more great Atlanta Falcons news and analysis over at The Grits Blitz.