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2013 NFL Draft: Zach Ertz Scouting Report

2013 NFL Draft: Zach Ertz Scouting Report
By Patrick Conn on February 22, 2013

Coming out of Stanford following a Pac-12 Championship and a Rose Bowl victory, Ertz is one of the top two prospects at the tight end position.  Having amassed 69 receptions and 898 yards, Ertz was the top tight end in terms of production. Though, he ranked in the middle of the pack with just six touchdowns. 

This past season was his best to date in his three years at Stanford. Making the decision to forgo his senior season and enter the NFL Draft makes the most sense for Ertz.  As the second rated tight end behind Tyler Eifert, he should be a first-round pick.

 

Ht Wt Class Rank Projection
6'5" 250 Junior 34 First Round

 

Positives:

Size: At 6’5", Zach Ertz is a big target for his quarterback.  This will make it a bit easier when trying to throw over the top of linebackers and safties trying to contain him.  He has the size of Jason Witten and Tony Gonzalez making him a big need in this year’s draft.

Hands: He is as sure handed as a tight end can be.  You can have faith when the ball comes his way that he will bring it in.  This makes him a major threat in the passing game.

Route Running: Ertz is at his best when lining up as a slot receiver not down in a three point stance.  He is great at stretching the field and coming out of his breaks.  When making cuts he does not lose speed which will keep defenders from gaining ground on outs and crossing routes.

 

Weaknesses:

Run Blocking: As good as Ertz is in the passing game he is equally as ineffective in run blocking at Stanford.  When engaging with a defender he does not finish his blocks.  It would be risky to keep him in games during running plays other than just split out wide as a decoy. 

Dropped Passes: Ertz does have good hands however he drops a lot of balls.  He tends to have issues when attempting to catch a pass in traffic.  Even with the issues with dropped passes Ertz can still be a productive player for years to come.

 

Bottom Line

Ertz has tremendous upside as a pass catching threat and will be a great second option to couple with another tight end who can handle the blocking assignments.  When watching film you will notice that he constantly will get a miss match with a smaller safety and linebackers.  Fits the mold of a Dallas Clark or Hakeem Nicks.  I expect him to be off the board late first round.

Video Highlights
 

Patrick Conn

Patrick "Conman" Conn

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