2015 NFL Draft: Bengals’ Tight End Options

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Jan 21, 2015; Mobile, AL, USA; North squad tight end Nick Boyle of Delaware (86) hangs onto a pass over North squad safety Kurtis Drummond of Michigan State (27) and defensive corner Doran Grant of Ohio State (12) during North squad Senior Bowl practice at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Boyle, Delaware Fighting Blue Hens

After suggesting a possible “double dip” into the tight end pool, this article would be remiss in its purpose if it didn’t provide a late round player.  That player is Nick Boyle.  Although Boyle hasn’t faced elite competition having played at Delaware, he offers great size and solid athleticism for his size; it’s not everyday you can find a player who’s 6’4″, 268 pounds with long arms and big hands who can do this.

Boyle showed well at the Senior Bowl against more appropriate competition. As can be seen in the previous link, he’s a willing blocker, though may need some serious work when doing so; launching oneself at an opponent simply won’t cut it at the next level.  Also, as can be seen from the highlight, Boyle has a measure of athleticism having caught a pass, turning, and leaping over a tackler; again, not readily found at that size.

If the Bengals were to “double dip” and select a second tight end in the later rounds, it would mean they would be affording this player a year to develop.  Boyle would benefit greatly from a “redshirt” year.  Just acclimating to the NFL life can be a challenge.  Having to acclimate yourself to this level of competition versus the one Boyle has seen at Delaware will be even harder.  This while Boyle will need time to learn how to block effectively and develop a rapport with Andy Dalton.

Although Boyle would essentially be a “project,” this is what fans should expect from the later round selections: high upside, low risk.  Boyle offers this type of player, yet one who could develop into a great player with proper coaching and time to acclimate.  Taking Boyle in the later rounds of the draft could ensure the Bengals’ depth at tight end while giving the coaching staff another opportunity to shape another
“diamond from the rough”; something this staff has excelled at in recent years.

Next: 2015 Draft: Bengals Could Focus on Offense (Tight Ends)

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