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Discussion in 'NFL Draft Forum' started by Not So Fast, Feb 1, 2014.
I'd be happy with that pick. I think he and Clay would give us a lot of matchup advantages.
Eric Ebron..tight end.....part time pass rusher..
Ck told me last year about this dude who would get me all jacked up.. The freakin dude was comin off the edge with authority.
Wish he was taller. I'd really like a big target for Tanny.
Can we pick up Graham for a few million?
Ebron in the first and Seastrunk in the second is a dream of mine. We'd probably have one of the most dynamic offenses in the league if that were to happen.
But we'd have to hit it out of the ballpark in free agency with the OL, and we'd still be lacking a short-yardage back.
I know Ebron is talented, and I like him as a player, but I've got trouble seeing the fit for Miami. To me, it's essentially adding another Charles Clay to the offense. I think with the drafting of Egnew and Sims Miami is clearly looking for a bigger, in-line tight end. If they go that route my money would be on C.J. Fiedorowicz. I know they met with him at the Senior Bowl, and there's the obvious Philbin-Iowa connection.
At this point, barring free agency, I think my top 4 for Miami at 19 would be in no particular order: Aaron Donald, Ra'shede Hageman, Cyrus Kouandjio and Taylor Lewan. I'd also give consideration to Louis Nix, Stephon Tuitt, and Darqueze Dennard.
Edit* Can't believe I left off HaHa Clinton-Dix from my list. Doubt he's there at 19, but I'd be interested if he was.
I agree with this, even though I do like Ebron. We've already got a TE in a similiar mold in Egnew, though I don't know he'll make it past this year's training camp if we do select a TE in the draft. Niklas is also a possibility, he is huge and a physical mismatch in the Gronk mold, he certainly fits the "tough player" description that Hickey said he wants. Niklas would be a great compliment to Clay... it would be nice if we can trade down, draft Niklas in the end of the first while grabbing maybe an extra third. I don't know much about Fiedorowicz but will look him up.
I'm clad I'm not the only one who hates this pick for the dolphins. Whereas clay was inconsistent in his first couple years ebron will be polished but IMO they are the same type of player.
Also, it's hard to imagine a scenario where there wouldn't be a better player for us, like an offensive lineman.
Consider for a moment that Joe Philbin may WANT the same type of player at the #1 and #2 tight end positions. When Dustin Keller was healthy, they showed in the preseason a lot of variability in how they used the two on the field as essentially two guys who could play each other's roles fluidly on a down to down basis. The coaches talked about how excited they were about that approach. Either could line up wide, either could be in the backfield, either could line up attached.
Also, Eric Ebron is a seam threat where Charles Clay really isn't. Ebron does a lot of his damage down the middle of the field, and this team is in severe need of a middle of the field target.
Philbin is big on versatility, so yes I agree that he may want that. What about a red zone threat at TE though? Dion Sims was probably selected to play that role, maybe they would want someone like that as well, which is where one of the tall physical TE's come in, they can be the red zone threat and good in-line blocker that we seem to be missing. In this case Sims would be the odd man out...
Maybe this is the year where Egnew starts showing up more, like Clay did in his 3rd year and he fills that Dustin Keller role, I just don't know if the coaches are comfortable with him though.
Thing is, Egnew is not really similar. He came out of Missouri characterized as an over sized receiver, but if you look at where he caught the ball and the routes he ran, very little of what he did as a receiver translates to the NFL. Egnew is not a down the field threat despite his size and speed. He's mostly a short area target that Missouri ran a lot of slip screens and such to in that offense. Really, what got Egnew on the field this past season was that they got him blocking at a passable level as a fullback, and honestly, I think the coaching staff prefers a true fullback for that role.
We have Gibson when healthy and if he stays on the team.
the only GM in the world that would pass on Ebron because his team already had Egnew or Sims is the guy we just fired. Ebron might only be an inch taller than Clay but with his leaping ability and long arms he plays like he's 6-7. there's a very good chance he could be the best talent available if he's still on the board at 19. he's like a taller Aaron Hernandez imo.
I think you'd prefer to pair Clay with a guy who could play a more traditional in-line role, but I don't think it's necessary. This isn't likely to be a team that is going to line up all day with two attached tight ends running the ball.
Well in a perfect world I pair him with a Tony Gonzalez type who can do everything at a relatively high level.
In reality I pair him with a player who most fits into my vision for the offense. So if we go with a TE it will say a lot about what Philbin Is wanting to build in terms of offensive identity.
Yes please! I really think Ebron or Amaro might be the two most likely guys at this point because I don't see the Dolphins waiting until the draft to fix the line. I fully expect them to sign a LT, and probably more starters on the line. That will allow them to get more explosive on offense with a guy like this.
If Tony Gonzalez could ever block worth a ****, it was long before I really paid attention to football beyond just normal spectator stuff.
Well, if we're looking at it from a size/blocking standpoint, Ebron would be an upgrade over Gibson or Matthews in the slot, as well as a talent upgrade too. So from that perspective you could say Ebron+Clay > Gibson+Clay.... or Ebron+Clay is =/> Gibson+inline TE..... and if we're looking to bolster the run blocking I'd think we'd have greater overall versatility from dual Hbacks than an inline TE paired with a slot receiver.
Clay is pretty much here to stay, so using that as a starting point I think pairing him with an inline TE would do more to break the mold of Philbin's scheme rather than compliment it, as well as what Lazor did in Philly. I think that would verge on overkill in the ground game unless we have a real stud like Gronk to offset it. Not to mention, as far as the run game is concerned, Ebron+Clay is likely to see less base defense than Clay+Inline TE, so the overall difference in run blocking could be negligible. Lazor and Philbin [including his GB time] are coming from 240'ish pound TEs and slot receivers manning the middle. Having Clay alone in base offense might be viewed as us being too light in the pants so I could see it a desire for Philbin to add a stud Hback to get us bigger but without sacrificing receiving ability.
The other thing I think we should ask is, who do we want on the field in base offense or seeing the majority of snaps out of Clay, Gibson, and Matthews? Personally I'd say Clay. If you, too, said Clay, then you'd have to go with another Hback to pair him too. If instead said Gibson, then I could see the argument for swapping Clay for a bigger inline TE.
I would put them in that particular order myself.
Round 1 Ebron
Round 2 Seastrunk
I try and view off season availabilities opportunistically, which I know you do too since you're always coming up with these funky personnel acquisition ideas along with ways that they can compensate by changing the schemes, etc.
What you say may be true that a second version of Charles Clay may fit Joe Philbin better than a more traditional in-line guy.
But what I'm wondering is, will that fit the Miami Dolphins roster better than a more traditional guy?
I think 2013 convinced me more than ever that Ryan Tannehill would do a lot better if you were able to establish a consistent ground game for him.
There's also evidence that Tannehill did significantly better out of 2-TE sets than other personnel groupings. On this one you can pick which stat you want to use. CNNSi says that Tannehill was 29 of 48 for 249 yards, 4 TDs and 0 INTs (7 sacks) when the team had 2+ tight ends on the field. They also say he was 56 of 89 for 651 yards, 5 TDs and 0 INTs (9 sacks) when he had 0 to 2 wide receivers on the field. One is a 101.8 passer rating, the other is a 103.7 passer rating.
The inverses of those splits suggest he had a 79.9 passer rating with fewer than 2 tight ends on the field (also 51 sacks vs. 540 attempts) and a 77.8 passer rating with 3+ wide receivers on the field (also 49 sacks vs. 499 attempts).
Additionally look at the play-action splits from both 2012 and 2013. Tannehill had a 109.6 passer rating on play-action in 2013 and a 121.2 passer rating on play-action in 2012. He had a 76.6 passer rating on non-play-action in 2013 and a 67.7 passer rating on non-play-action in 2012.
Of course, none of this is necessarily CONCLUSIVE that Miami needs to get a second tight end that can help with the ground game. But I do think it is very suggestive of some ways in which Miami could adapt the system to fit the players.
But not just the existing players, also the players we COULD have. In this case I truly believe TE Troy Niklas to be the kind of dominating physical presence in both phases that Rob Gronkowski could be guessed to be when he was coming out of Arizona. He is a former defensive player and has all of the physicality you'd hope that comes with that. He has an immense frame. He blocks like an offensive tackle yet runs like Gronkowski. He's got soft hands and catches the football outside of his frame. He's a dominant force with the football in his hands as demonstrated by his class-leading yards after catch average.
Yet (to date) this is not a guy that Miami should expect to have any trouble drafting even if they were to trade down from the 19th overall pick. Hell, to this point (I don't expect it to last) most people would expect him to be available to Miami at their 2nd round pick.
To me that's an opportunity to add talent that fits the ROSTER and not necessarily the coaches. And that's what you should be going for.
It's a really good question, the talents of pairing up Clay with Ebron or Nicklas and how that results in offensive production..there's arguments for both sides.
The addition of a Nicklas skillset gives you more versatility to your offense, to be able to change things up a bit depending on what's happening in the game..
The addition of Ebrons skillset would mean instant offense and the threat to take over the middle of the field..
To attack with Ebron and Clay would be quite unique and more in line with an aerial assault, Nicklas and Clay would be more balanced and probably what this team and Qb need to reach their ceiling..
Our blocking is bad, Nicklas's large advantage in that dept while still threatening the defense because of his receiving and yac skills seem like a better fit.
However, the signing of Keller last year shows that he might prefer the Ebron type, also I don't think the packers have had a Nicklas type in a very long time..maybe he just prefers faster more agile tight ends.
It really depends on what you view to be Troy Niklas' limitations.
The player that I've seen is definitely a threat over the middle and up the seam because he's enormous and has soft hands, catches the football outside of his frame, and is physical in the extreme (can take a hit, hit back). The player that I've seen can line up wide or in the slot as well because he moves very fluidly and people should not act shocked if he runs in the low 4.7's at the Combine.
On the other hand my goodness I won't complain a bit if the pick at #19 overall is Eric Ebron. In fact I doubt he's even there.
Let me make something clear on Eric Ebron. He's not a good blocker. At all. I think those people that kinda sorta wanna see a decent blocker are kidding themselves.
But one could easily argue that's not important to even the slightest degree. If he's big enough and strong enough and fast enough he can be taught to be an effective enough blocker. Aside from maybe Gronk, you hardly ever hear a TE praised and become a marquee player in this league based on blocking ability.
Also, no doubt Ebron drops the football a little much. But so do a lot of great players.
But I've had this guy on watch since like immediately after the 2013 draft as the first tight end to watch for next draft and there's a reason. He's about as much of a physical dynamo mismatch as you're going to get. He's Vernon Davis. He moves like a wide receiver on a 6'4" and 250 lbs frame. He breaks tackles because of that frame. He is a threat over the middle because of that frame. Maybe not the same classic seam threat that a Gronk is, but still quite the threat.
On the football field, this guy can outrun people that run in the 4.4's. He's the guy that scares the bajesus out of a defense in the film room and changes the way they have to play you on Sunday.
The stats thing...well first off I think they are absolutely in his favor depending on which ones you look at. Second, lets keep in mind that lately a lot of the top producing tight ends in the NFL were nil on the stat sheet in college. The position is an athletic mismatch position and Eric Ebron is about as athletic mismatch-y as you get.
He's going to blow the doors off the NFL Combine.
I like Amaro and I like Niklas and I think there's a good running argument about the three players depending on what it is exactly you believe you need. But if Miami takes Ebron at 19 overall I think I'd be pretty excited overall...though a bit worried that they're not quite surrounding Tannehill with what works best for him but rather what they think works.
Wow, each of these guys sounds like a "win" if we could land one of them. Niklas' size is really attractive to me and I like that he has some blocking ability, but Ebron sounds like a game changer.
On those stats about Tanny's performance and 2 TE set I'd love to know down and distance. Just so many variables.
the difference in that dept is there, but by how much, and is that difference enough to pick Ebron over the overall tight end who could bring something of an advantage in the physicality dept..which is also something this team needs..
Damn it, why did Colt lyerla have to be such a coke sniffin douchebag.
great points, Chris. As for Tannehill's success among 2 TE sets and play-action like you mentioned [thanks for that], I believe much of it was with Clay & Egnew who are essentially 2 Hbacks and not much different than Clay/Ebron, no? So wouldn't that mean Clay/Ebron could be the better duo if we're looking to maintain continuity than switching to a traditional Y tight end?
Not to mention, Clay + Ebron would likely mean more run opportunities against nickel, where as Clay + Nicklas will likely see a heavy dose of base D, so I'm not sure the difference in the ground game opportunity would be vast. If Egnew weren't in there, it was Dion Sims who was just a rookie and wasn't killing it as a blocker IIRC, so I don't think Tannehill's success in those situations would be attributed to him. Just a thought.
If Ebron facing a nickel corner like he'd probably be doing quite often, I'd think he'd hold the blocking advantage in that scenario, no?... especially over a slot receiver [Gibson]. Wouldn't that be a matchup advantage for us in the ground game?
Perhaps getting the defense into base is exactly what helps Tannehill thrive. Think about it. He's got a high passer rating on play-action, with 2-TE and 3-TE personnel, and with 2-WR personnel. What defense will you be facing on MOST of those downs?
I mean it may be as simple as that...if you track his work against nickel defenses versus base defenses it could very well be that he's just plain better against base defenses. If that's the case, is Eric Ebron more likely to get the defense into a nickel or a base?
Also, as far as which TE was involved more in 2-TE and 3-TE work...it would appear that Sims was on the field for 129 pass plays while Egnew was on the field for 128 pass plays...split pretty evenly.
I don't necessarily think that signing Dustin Keller and having Charles Clay suggests anything at this point. At the time of that signing, Charles Clay had not emerged yet. The team really didn't know what they had in him. What they thought is that Charles was a FB/TE hybrid player that would play in spots off the bench.
Don't forget that Jared Cook was the Dolphins top tight end target, and he was a player that played detached from the line more often than not and also had great size (6'5", 250 lbs). I guess the legitimate question to ask is whether Jared Cook was identified by the coaching staff or the scouting staff as the top target.
There were some mixed views from the draft as well, as Miami was apparently looking to draft Jordan Reed with the 82nd pick before they traded the pick, and Jordan Reed was clearly a joker tight end. They then drafted Dion Sims, who was more of a traditional tight end.
I'm glad we didn't sign Cook for the money he got.
Clay exploded into the scene this year..his jump in play was substantial, the good news is he might be the most humble cat on the team, and seemingly all he wants to do is get better.
Interesting thoughts and makes sense on the surface. I wouldn't mind perusing through some of Philly's film to see what defenses they faced with any two of Celek, Ertz, and Casey on the field who average less than 250 lbs, as well as revisit what we faced with Clay/Egnew. Who else could we check out for reference who utilized dual move TEs/Hbacks? Indy? Houston? San Diego? St Louis? We know Tannehill had success with 2+ TEs, so was it specifically b/c of the TEs themselves- the routes they run, how they set up on the field, etc compared to slot receivers, or was it due to scheme/coverage faced like you're hinting might be the case?
Perhaps rather than straight up nickel, we'd face a 4-2-5 or 3-3-5 with DC's leaving the line alone but subbing in an extra corner/safety to counter Ebron, so in that regard, would it really alter Tannehill's success during play-action and 2+ TE sets? The play-action in theory should still be ok if Ebron can provide an advantage in the run game over the smaller guy covering him. And if we want to keep a defense in base, then we could still go with 3 TE personnel with Clay/Ebron/Egnew. Ebron could be the move piece instead of Clay. Clay could be at Y instead of Sims, and Egnew would remain as the blocking Hback. Just spitballin. We gotta get to the root of Tanny's success in those situations.
Maybe we also need to look at how to improve his passing in those situations he underachieved in since it's not like we can run 2+ TE and playaction every snap right.
74.6 passer rating on 3rd down with 8 picks, and I'm guessing we didn't run much play-action there. Obviously some of that is on the O-line. Does Ebron's receiving talent improve us on 3rd down? ...and better or worse than Nicklas?
68.9 passer rating over the middle, his worst showing by far of the 5 locations. Next lowest was 84.9 to the right side and then 85.8 to the left sideline. Interestingly enough, and with all the flack Wallace received, Tannehill was the most successful along the right sideline with a 90.5 rating, 1017 yards, and 11 TDs. Pretty crazy considering how many big throws he left on the field. Would Ebron address Tannehill's middle-of-field woes?... better or worse than Nicklas?
65.3 passer rating on throws of 10+ yards. 44.6% completion with 7 TD & 11 INT. This represents 31% of his total attempts, so it needs to be addressed. Getting a bigger guy in the slot [over Gibson/Matthews] who has a huge catch radius and is a great bad-ball receiver could be a nice plus. So- Ebron?
He's also been noticeably worse over the first 50 yards of the field [69.2 passer rating, 1 TD, 10 INT, 58% completion], but I have no clue WTF to make of that.
Will make for an interesting debate in trying to analyze Ebron vs Nicklas. Perhaps Ebron or Nicklas could aid the bolded stuff above while also allowing Tannehill to continue thriving in 2 TE sets and playaction, plus he's also been better with motion which would play to Ebron's hand [although it's a small sample size].
The other thing to think about is- Clay is clearly Philbin's favorite among our tight ends and he fits the mold of the guy we signed in FA [Keller], which I'm guessing Philbin endorsed. He also fits the mold of the move tight ends he had in Green Bay. Now, we already have an inline guy [Sims], and we have an H-back/fullback type [Egnew], so if we add another TE, how can it be anything other than another move guy since that's who gets the most snaps? I'm apprehensive to think we'd double up at inline TE and leave the cupboard depleted at move TE unless they're ready to give up on Sims and are looking for his immediate replacement.
I'm not pining for us drafting Ebron yet BTW even though it seems like it in this thread. Just spitballing why he might be an appealing option.
Having Ebron and Clay on the field would not induce a base look until we SHOW we can run the ball.
The same could also be said about our passing game and nickel or 4-2-5 looks. It could conceivably take a little time to prove we can throw the ball well and efficiently enough to get defenses out of their comfort zones, even with Ebron & Clay. They might stay in base and dare us to pass.
I think early in games on 1st downs teams will play base, but once we abandon the run like always it won't be an issue.