Tight End ~ Jeremy Sprinkle ~ Arkansas RazorBacks ~ 6045/256
The Prototype would be about 6050/260 or so.
The "Tight Ends" whose Frames are better suited to be deployed in running Routes from all over the Formation, and who aren't especially renowned for their Blocking ~ though many are adept Chippers ~ I refer to as Flex Ends.
The Prototype would be about 6030/245 or so.
Those of either type who present legitimate Dual Threats ~ who can make a genuine Impact either as a Blocker or as a Receiver ~ are impossible to predict from Snap to Snap, and this renders them extraordinarily dangerous.
Conceivably even more dangerous and dynamic than either of these two types is one of my pet Positions: The WingBacks. I employ this ancient FootBall Term, one still in active use in many High Schools and Colleges, to refer to a Role so ethereal as to be almost imaginary: an Hybrid FullBack & Flex End ~ a Super Hybrid, if you will.
The Prototype would be about 6000/240 or so.
The WingBack, optimally, would be a guy capable of Lead Blocking in the Run Game, Pass Blocking in the Passing Game, or splitting out and running Pass Patterns from SlotBack, Slot End, Split End, or Flanker. He could line up at any of those spots, or on either Wing, on the Line, or in the BackField. He could even go In Motion or run the Ball!!
Such a versatile, dynamic Player could have an explosive Impact on the Competitive LandScape.
The Game has reached a point in its Tactical History that is perfect for such a Player.
It awaits only for the NFL to realize the Opportunity.
Because Tight Ends, in the particular categorical sense in which I employ the term, are optimally genuine 50/50 Hybrids, I focus equal attention on Attributes both of Blocking and of Catching in evaluating their Skill Sets:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body Strength in the world will still fail if you simply can't dig in your Heels. But Core Power enables an Offensive Lineman to project Power in the Running Game and to reject Power in the Passing Game.
Agility: Launch Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous Asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're lurching around like FrankenStein.
Frame: Vertical Leverage, Hands, Arm Length, and WingSpan.
Combat Skills: Lateral Leverage, Paw Positioning, Paw Persistence, and FootWork.
Processing Speed: How quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape!!
Motor: Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Blocking: Applying it all: Power, Agility, Frame, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Pass Blocking: Power, Agility, Frame, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Separation: Getting Open. This encompasses Combat Skills & Fluidity to beat Press, Acceleration or Short Speed, Fluidity and Ricochet in navigating Traffic, Route Running Precision, Deception of Defenders, and Processing Speed and Field Vision for Timing Seams and Open Zones. The way I see it, Separation dwarfs All other Aspects of a WideOut's Job Description in Importance. In fact, I consider Separation more important that all the other Aspects combined.
Catch Point Capacity: In Transition or Contested: Hands, WingSpan, Vertical Agility, Combat Skills, and Timing. Timing is of course derivative of Processing Speed and Field Vision, and affects both Transitional Catches and Contested Catches, the latter both in terms of timing one's Jumps and in employing Combat Skills to work free at the right Moment.
Chunk Yardage: An highly overrated Aspect of the Game, I believe, so much so that in fact I didn't even include it in 2016. It is not a negligible Aspect of the Game, so I'm bringing it back, but getting open, catching the Ball, and Moving the Chains are far more crucial to a Team's Success, I believe, than making Splash Plays and getting on ESPN HighLights Reels. Power, Fluidity, Ricochet, Speed, Combat Skills, and Processing Speed/Field Vision all play into Chunk Yardage.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength in the Passing Game. The capacity to Stand One's Ground.
* Drive Power in the Running Game. The capacity to drive your man back.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Vertical Leverage. Height is crucial, but it's actually better, I believe, to be an Inch shorter than an Inch Taller.
* Hands. The larger the better, generally, but compact is never a bad Attribute in The Trenches.
* Arm Length. Absolutely crucial. He who boasts the longer Arms initiates Combat.
* WingSpan. Arm Length + Torso Width. A more complete Measurement.
* Lateral Leverage. Angles. Getting Square or better with the Target.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Persistence ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* FootWork ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* Reading & Reacting to Defensive Schemes & Stunts quickly and effectively.
* Field Vision: Finding Targets & approaching them effectively.
* Power ~ Drive Power to project Power in the Running Game.
* Agility ~ especially Acceleration DownField or to the Flank.
* Frame ~ especially Vertical Leverage.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
* Power ~ Anchoring Strength to reject Power in the Passing Game.
* Agility ~ especially Fluidity to Mirror the Pass Rusher.
* Frame ~ especially WingSpan.
* Combat Skills.
* Processing Speed.
* Combat Skills
* Field Vision
Catch Point Capacity
Catch Point Capacity
* Combat Skills
* Vertical Agility
* Combat Skills
* Field Vision
Power: Marginal. He certainly doesn't look 256 Pounds...But then I'm not a good Judge of such things. In any case, he usually survives when he Anchors in Pass Protection, but gets absolutely no Push in Run Blocking.
Agility: Impressive. Sprinkle exhibits just adequate Fluidity to Mirror in Pass Protection or redirect in the Open Field, but exceptional Acceleration to the Flanks and DownField in the Running Game.
Frame: Outstanding. Terrific Height for optimal Vertical Leverage and a tremendous WingSpan!!
Combat Skills: Sufficient. Adequate Paw Positioning, Paw Persistence, and FootWork.
Processing Speed: Marginal. Mind you, I've only watched the one Game from 2016, against Texas Christian, as well as a couple from 2015, but in that Horny Frog Contest, Sprinkle exhibited mediocre Speed & Efficacy when Reading and Reacting to Defensive Deception in Pass Protection and horrible Speed & Efficacy when Locating & Approaching his Targets in the Running Game, repeatedly approaching late or from Bad Angles and getting beaten badly.
Motor: Exceptional. Impressive Intensity. Excellent Stamina. Looks For Work.
Run Blocking: Mediocre, but with tremendous Potential. Sprinkle exhibits almost no Power at all at The Point of Attack, and my Grade for'm for a Power Scheme Team would be "Utterly awful, and with no Hope whatsoever", but Behind Enemy Lines, he's got the Speed, the WingSpan, and the Motor to make an enormous Impact if his Field Vision develops. Deploying Sprinkle on a Zone Scheme Team would potentially be a far, far different Story, altogether!!
Pass Blocking: Again, And With Feeling: Mediocre but with...exceptional Potential. Sprinkle's Fluidity to Mirror is moderate, but his WingSpan and his Motor compensate go a long ways towards augmenting that. Mind you: he'll have enormous Problems with Power, mind you, but if he develops those Combat Skills, he could definitely excel.
Separation: Effective, and with impressive Potential.
I didn't see'm in Press Coverage, as he wasn't challenged in the Texas Christian Game, this Year, and lined up usually at FullBack in 2015, when Hunter Henry was still there. Speculating, therefore, in lieu of Tapes that I'm expecting those beautiful folks at Draft BreakDown will produce later on, I'm gonna go with Mediocre, in consideration of his marginal Power and mediocre Fluidity, contrasted with his tremendous WingSpan and his exceptional Motor.
His Agility, I'd describe as impressive, based on sufficient Fluidity but exceptional Acceleration DownField and exceptional Ricochet out'fi's Breaks. I didn't get a feel for'is Long Speed, but he simply wasn't asked to display it.
His Route Running was effective, and definitely improved in the 2016 Game against the Horny Frogs in his new Role. He exhibited improved Processing Speed and Field Vision in finding the Open Zone, I thought.
Catch Point Capacity: Impressive, and with tremendous Potential. Sprinkle's Hands are'is Achilles Heal, which is to say that they're inconsistent and that he plants too many FootBalls. But he flashes Brilliant Hands, nevertheless, which suggests that his Issues are just a matter of Time & Training, his WingSpan is tremendous, his Combat Skills on Contested Catches is exceptional, and his Timing, both on Contest Catches and In Transition, is excellent.
Chunk Yardage: Mediocre. Sprinkle exhibits inadequate Power, moderate Fluidity, and marginal Field Vision, but his exceptional Acceleration DownField, his Long Speed, and his Motor render'm dangerous, anyway.
The RazorBack's Scheme dramatically dialed down Jeremy Sprinkles's expected Role in the Passing Game in 2016, despite the Hype that predicted a Break Out Year for'm, with Hunter Henry headed to the NFL.
In fact, during the Texas Christian Game, an Announcer was talking Tactics, and at one point mentioned that Sprinkle was an eligible Receiver!! Hah!! Like my Pappy always says, "If the Announcer feels compelled to point out that you're an Eligible Receiver, it just might be a sign that you're getting phased out'f the Passing Game."
So instead of his Market Value skyrocketing, as expected...it tanked!!
Jeremy Sprinkle is a Prospect that I like. He doesn't strike me as dynamic, and he'd be an huge Liability as a Blocker on a Power Scheme Team, but on a Zone Scheme Team, he's got the Potential to develop not only into an exceptional Pass Catching Flex End, but an exceptional Blocker, as well...All he needs is enough Time & Training.
And I don't give a Rat's Ass about his idiotic ShopLifting. Show me a Pattern of that, and I'll change my Tune. But one Incident is just a Kid being a dumb Kid. I did one Hell of a lot worse when I was that age!!
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
5th ~ 7th Round
None of this is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning!! Caveat Emptor!!