Cory's Corner: What To Make Of The Tight Ends

Does anyone know what to expect from the Packers tight ends? 

Last season, the Packers tight end position was a mystery. 

And now, with over 10 training camp practices wrapped up, that position is still a conundrum. 

Jace Sternberger was expected to take the starting reins easily. He looked to take a step forward in the postseason last year after injuring his ankle in the final preseason game, which put him on injured reserve. In the NFC Championship, he notched his first touchdown reception as a pro.

The lanky 2019 third rounder appeared to be on an upward climb heading into this season. 

However, that hasn't happened. Sternberger has been mostly invisible in training camp, which wasn't helped by landing on the COVID-19 list. He isn't doing anything special that would make him stand out as a surefire starter. 

Now, I really like Marcedes Lewis. Bringing him back was a huge move because he's an excellent blocker and he can be a great influence on Sternberger. The 36-year-old played 45 percent of the offensive snaps last year. As long as Sternberger continues his inconsistent play, that percentage is going to swell. Can the Packers really count on Lewis to play that much? Jimmy Graham played 57 percent of the offensive snaps last year and he clearly shouldn't have been out there that much. 

Then there's Robert Tonyan. He's a solid blocker and the 2017 undrafted free agent has an entire rolodex full of circus catches. The question is, can he consistently be a reliable weapon for Aaron Rodgers? He has only played 17 percent of the offensive snaps in 2019 and six percent in 2018. I think we are just scratching the surface with Tonyan, but clearly the Packers question his consistency if they were willing to draft Sternberger in the third round. 

With coach Matt LaFleur wanting to run more and use more of a play-action scheme, the tight ends will be critical. I would expect to see plenty of two tight end sets where one is expected to block and the other will be turned into a receiver. 

The wild card is going to be rookie Josiah Deguara. He is the definition of versatility and will play all over the place — the Packers have even hinted that he could see snaps at wideout. That means trying to forecast where he will play is next to impossible. Deguara has proven that he has great hands, he is athletic and he can get open. A lot of draftniks have said that he has had trouble blocking, but I haven't seen it. He isn't afraid of physicality and can open holes, which is what will get him on the field. 

The tight end position was supposed to crystallize heading into this season.

It has only been more confounding. 

 

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Comments (53)

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Bure9620's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:25 am

Interesting group, so is Tonyan the 1 now?? When people say Sternberger had a quiet camp, I am wondering what he was asked to do, we he a primary blocker on most plays?? I am also curious to see how much Deguara can digest. I am thinking Gute maybe asks him to be a TE only in year 1??

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Leatherhead's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:11 am

Despite the author’s assertion that Tonyan is a solid blocker, he is not. If you have any Tonyan on your DVR, watch and you’ll see that he’s a capable in-line blocker but he whiffs too often when he’s on the move.

Lewis is the main TE.. I don’t see the TE as a prominent part of the passing game at this point.

If you play MVS and Lazard outside, and put Adams and Jones in the slot with Dillon in the backfield....that’s probably our best group. You almost have to play dime defense against that, leaving 5 run defenders, four of which are in there for the pass rush. That is going to make it difficult to stop Dillon.

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CoachDino's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:32 pm

Interesting Point Lhead. I wonder if they have used Dillon and Jones together in the backfield, essentially using Dillon as a FB in camp. Then spread Jones out as a rec as you pointed out. The thought going into camp being that a TE/HB would be used more in that role. The point being the Packers have options.

With very little information on players in Camp due to restrictions and lack of Preseason games I have to admit I'm not as confidant in the TE situation as I felt coming into the season.

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Leatherhead's picture

September 02, 2020 at 04:27 pm

I think we’ll see quite a bit of Jones and Dillon together. You want your best skill position players on the field as much as you can and that means Jones and Adams for sure. I think It’ll be Dillon and Lazard and one other player to be named later.

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optimisticfan's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:37 pm

LH/OS,
You are probably right that based on having a potential 3 headed RB monster we could see more predominantly RBs then TEs. Yes there is a benefit to making the opponent pick their poison with the our top WRs forcing some dime personnel and opening up space for Jones/Dillon to exploit.

But having depth in fresh players to rotate in makes a difference in a more up tempo offense too. Also until Dillon shows he is a reliable blocker, Willams will have more snaps than him since Williams and Jones’ versatility unlocks the greater versatility in overall schemes. I don’t think we are going to pound and run the ball quite to the percentage that you believe. I bet they still have more passing plays than running plays (55/45)? Just more efficient short quick route passing game. The opportunities for versatility in a RPO game with Jones/Williams/Lewis/Tonyan/Deguara/Sternberger various combos should not be overlooked (even if they have lesser playing percentages). Deguara for instance could be used effectively for selected plays until he has a mastery of more of the playbook.

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Leatherhead's picture

September 02, 2020 at 04:42 pm

A 55/45 split would have us throwing 540 passes, or about 35/game.. I think that’s on target, although I’d take the under.

I think Dillon is a guy you want on the field, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him run right over the Tiny Vikings in the opener. Given the abbreviated nature of training camp and preseason, there’s no need to be tricky....just run over them. They’re tiny.

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Turophile's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:30 am

Like CoryJennerjohn I like that the Packers retained Marcedes Lewis. This may well be his last year in the NFL, but the huge experience he has could be of great help to the rest of the young TE crew. That assumes he is helping to coach the younger guys and I don't know if he is invested in that, but I'm assuming he is. There are some TEs that come from college as pretty good blockers, but on the whole the draftable guys tend more towards the pass-catching type - most young TEs need plenty of work on their blocking, some are never good (see Jimmy Graham, for example).

The ongoing 'surprise' of the TE group is that Tonyan is ahead of Sternberger, but from what has been seen on field so far, that is how it should be. I am high on Sternberger, but I think he still has a ways to go before he deserves to be at the no.1 spot. I'm also expecting Deguara to take some time to be as effective as LaFleur wants him to be, mainly because he wants to use Deguara in many different ways..............and THAT means it's going to take time for him to get a lot of different things down pat.

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gkarl's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:45 am

I'm not sure what the TE order is, right now all we have are the media making assumptions. Until we hear it from MLF or see it on the field the young guys are still fighting for playing time and there pecking order. Lewis will get his usual share of snaps but beyond that its still TBD.

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Barnacle's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:54 am

At tight end we have a coach(Lewis), a sick/injured high potential diamond in the ruff(Sternberger), a rookie who can be great at 5 to 8 positions(Dequaro) and an experienced undrafted free agent(Tonyan).

I hope this versatile guy can learn all his positions faster than any rookie in recent history?

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CoachDino's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:33 pm

Great summation...

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mnbadger's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:58 am

the % of snaps for each player will be directly related to their ability to block and run the correct route. Especially in the first few weeks. I'm expecting to see a lot of Lewis, then Tonyan then Jace through first five weeks. GPG

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stockholder's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:03 am

I'm not happy with any of these TEs at this time. Mercedes Lewis should Retire. Tonyan needs to grow up. Sternberger needs to keep his mind on his job. And want the ball. Deguara should never have been drafted. So what we have is a group of athletes. Not Tes. It is what it is. I don't believe Rodgers wants to throw to any of them. When I see that change. We will have the TE we've wanted for years.

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murf7777's picture

September 01, 2020 at 08:29 am

Come on stockholder, you must have some positive about this group. Let me help you. Sternberger, looked impressive in the playoffs and really that is all we have to go on since he was injured for most of the year and was learning the NFL speed and a new O. Watch some college film on Deguara and zi think you will see why Packers drafted him. He is deceivingly athletic and will surprise defenses with that ability. Not sure this will be the year for him without as much practice but we will see as the year progresses. Maybe he will be that secret weapon in the playoffs if we are fortunate to make it.

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stockholder's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:29 am

Yes, we can only hope now.

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marpag1's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:14 am

[Tonyan is] ... "a solid blocker and the 2017 undrafted free agent has an entire rolodex full of circus catches. "

Of the four top TEs (Sternberger, Lewis, Deguara and Tonyan), Tonyan is unquestionably the worst blocker, and is a liability in that regard. He almost got Aaron Jones killed in the NFC championship game, and he didn't even play that much. And if he has an entire rolodex of circus catches, then he is also the owner of the world's smallest rolodex, having pulled in only 14 catches in his entire career.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:19 am

FWIW, I've read multiple tweets about fine blocks by Tonyan in practice during this TC, even though this is the modern NFL, so pads, live blocking, and tackling are limited. I've read a few about Marcedes, mostly described as bone-crushing (though I don't remember any about receiving). I have read a few tweets about Deguara's blocking. I can't remember a single positive tweet about Sternberger's blocking, but we don't know what he has been asked to do. Jace's blocking was better than expected last year and what I would describe as adequate so I am not that worried about his blocking though it would have been nice to read that it had demonstrably improved.

Tonyan clearly has had the best TC of these TEs just going by media observers. Deguara has had some ups and some downs but when dealing with rookies, happy to see the ups. Lewis apparently can still block. Very quiet on Sternberger's blocking, and I read some positive tweets that he was open but AR missed him and/or that he caught some passes.

I liked this group coming into 2020. I guess we will have to wait until Sept. 13.

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Leatherhead's picture

September 01, 2020 at 11:04 am

Tonyan gets a lot of love, that’s for sure.

Sternberger and Deguara were Top 100 draft picks, which indicates to me that the Packer personnel people, including the GM, expect these guys to contribute. Yes, there’s a learning curve and injuries but these guys weren’t drafted to sit on the bench behind Tonyan.

Lewis was brought back because he can block and nobody else has shown they are a starting TE. If the Packer brass thought Tonyan was the answer, would they have brought back Lewis AND drafted Deguara? For that matter, it’s not exactly a vote of confidence in Sternberger either.

At this moment, it’s Lewis, Sternberger, and Deguara. They’re not going to cut these guys. Maybe somebody ends up at IR.

So now you’re looking at Tonyan as a #4 TE......and he’s not eligible for the practice squad. We could keep 4, and probably should if the plan is more double TE sets, but it has occurred to me that our best 5 man skill group may not contain a TE. You could line up MVS and Lazard outside, put Adams in the slot, motion Jones to the other slot, and still have Dillon in the backfield

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dobber's picture

September 01, 2020 at 12:56 pm

"So now you’re looking at Tonyan as a #4 TE......and he’s not eligible for the practice squad."

Yes, he is eligible for the practice squad under vets' exemptions.

https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/nfl-reportedly-proposes-expansion-of-...

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Coldworld's picture

September 01, 2020 at 04:14 pm

Deguara is a hback.

Sternberger’s COVID list time limited his action. Don’t think we can read too much in either way: he isn’t a vet who could pick up immediately on return.

Tonyan surprised a few people in the media in camp it seems. Good. It will be a big bonus if he can be more than a tititular TE/oversized receiver. He seems to have worked on his craft and to be over a pretty limiting injury. If he clicks as an all round TE, it will be a big bonus. At this point, however, the fact that we heard more from him than the other TEs is in part due to Sternberger not being there and Deguara/Lovett being hback types focused on learning other things, particularly Deguara.

Of course, it’s hard to tell normally, this year with no true contact and only second hand text from camp, it’s even more ephemeral.

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Oppy's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:23 pm

I wouldn't expect to see 4 split wide in this offense too often.

We're probably going to see big formations and full backfields more often than 5 lined up on the LOS and a single back.

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CoachDino's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:41 pm

Great discussion. I love the camp updates but they really aren't of much value due to the restrictions on circumstance (which can't be reported), not game contact reps, and lack of video (confirmation). I say this because tonyan has never been an good blocker in games. I'm hopeful that he and Jace have continued to improve in that aspect But until that happens tough to proclaim him a adequate blocker at this point,

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SpikeHyzer's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:57 pm

You can also line Lazard up in TE positions. He has the size and strength to go get it.
Possibly a very versatile group if they can stay assignment sound.

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pimpindacrib's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:07 am

It is like you only look at the numbers and do not look at the context. 14 catches and averages a first down per carry, injured majority of his 2nd season. When he was out there, he was doing exactly what you want a TE to do.

First season he was 4th behind Jimmy, Lewis, and Lance. He just transitioned from WR in college, he obviously was learning that season, but still managed a hail mary catch from AR.

Second season he moved up to 3rd, did a great job as a backup to Jimmy, then got injured. That Dallas catch at least helped AR's trust with him, guarantee he would have got more looks had he been healthy.

Now with blocking, he was never brought in to be a big blocker, they knew this when picking him up after he transitioned from WR. He has the height and speed to burn most of his defenders. If this off season he really worked on his blocking, that is great, but I still wouldn't plan on him being out there where is blocking is critical to the play.

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Leatherhead's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:15 am

I agree. I’m not sure how Tonyan got the rep as a good blocker. He’s adequate in line, but on the move he just misses too often. Maybe he’ll be better this year.

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nostradanus's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:22 am

The TE’s will have to grow into their position as the season moves on. The bad news is the only real experienced vet is mainly a blocker, (though a good one) but when Lewis is in there is a good chance it’s a running play and opposing teams know it.
The good news is the other 3 guys are young, talented and each have different skill sets (and not much on film for teams to see)
Sternberger is a seam splitting threat, Tonyan can make the incredible catch and Degura has that “can do a bit of everything” lable coming out of college.
There is no one star in this bunch, they will have to evolve as a group and who knows? By years end we could be talking about the TE’s as a strength.
It will be fun to watch!
Go Pack!

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CoachDino's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:44 pm

Big N... When are you going to start writing articles. No offense to anyone here but I find your points of the most value at CHTV than the rest of what I read be it article or post....

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Branden Burke's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:46 pm

"but when Lewis is in there is a good chance it’s a running play and opposing teams know it."

If you put a player in a box, you will get that. He is a capable receiver. Not primarily a receiver, but capable when given opportunities. At the same time, this scheme is predicated on leading the defense to think one thing, but giving them something else when they don't expect it. Looking at lewis as primarily a blocker can open him up to some big receiving plays when sprinkled in properly. We saw that last year in more limited action.

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SpikeHyzer's picture

September 01, 2020 at 11:03 pm

This is why I believe Lewis will be the surprise cut of camp (and also so they can keep another WR).
I think Degura can take his job and be lined up in those 2 TE sets with either of the other two as a primary receiving threat. With our best deep threats at WR.

Those are some tough covers with the RB we throw in as well adding to the confusion.

I do think this will be a fun and very improved group over the last few years.

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Branden Burke's picture

September 02, 2020 at 09:12 am

I think heavy WR players in this offense isn't happening. The focus is more on TE's and RB's. Guys that keep each formation balanced.

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Coldworld's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:26 am

If Tonyan has turned into a solid blocker we should all be happy. He was frankly pretty poor in the past having been a WR. He lost last season to a pretty painful injury which I find it hard to believe allowed him to function as a TE. His strength has been as a catcher. His weakness was the rest of the TE role. If as you are saying that has changed, he may have a breakout season. I admit I’m a tad skeptical about that aspect of your piece. I’m just hoping he is adequate as a blocker.

Deguara and Lovett, the HBacks may both make the roster. The TE/Hback group ands its usage will be interesting to watch. Sternberger is the nearest to a classic TE. Typically they show up when the contact starts. We will see, but I think the group is stronger, being more versatile and athletic overall.

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Mcdaws's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:04 pm

Training with Kittle can help!

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PeteK's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:26 am

I still think Sternberger will be our main TE. He showed more in two playoff games as a blocker and receiver than any other player at that position on our roster. I'm not rooting against Tonyan ,but he has played well in non seasons games before only to fade when it really counts.

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pimpindacrib's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:24 am

Tonyan did well when he played to relief Jimmy of some snaps and earned AR's trust. He played well in pre-season games because they don't play the starter in 75% of the games, so when he actually gets snaps, he produces more. You can't just say "he only had 10 catches last season" with out providing context of what happened to him and the fact that we were playing top dollars on a washed TE. Theres no way they are wasting money by sitting Jimmy. Tonyan's injury cost him the season when his stock was rising.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 01, 2020 at 07:42 am

I'm curious to see what we have at TE.

We basically know what we are getting with Lewis. We really don't know what we are getting with Tonyan, Sternberger and Deguara yet.
I think Lewis will be our inline blocking type. I think Tonyan and Sternberger will be kind of inside and out, and I think Deguara will be the chess piece. Lined up inline, slot, out wide and at FB. I think he will bring a lot of versatility. I don't know how much he will play early though.

I think early we will see a good rotation. Tonyan and Sternberger i think will rotate a lot. But have the size and speed to get behind LB's. With the Play Action, i could see those getting used a lot on those roll outs.

I think as a whole our TE position is better now then it was a year ago. Now that being said, these guys have to go out and prove it on the field.

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oceanstrength's picture

September 01, 2020 at 08:03 am

Its hard to assess someone you cant see. Sternberger just hasn't been available and I never thought he was dynamic when played. Now we have sports writers who cant show any 'real' practice film or give much descriptive detail. No wonder its a mystery.
Another mystery is why no one (including AR apparently) thinks much of Lewis receiving ability. He has great hands and has always been a very good receiver. Imo he is more than a blocker and locker room guy. He's a stud and I think he should be on the field all the time, with Tonyan and Deguara worked in.
If Sternberger breaks out it will be a plus, but I wont hold my breath.

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NickPerry's picture

September 01, 2020 at 08:14 am

I think Sternberger will be just fine once the season get's started. Call me overly optimistic but the kid has skills. After he was drafted all we heard was the kid couldn't block. After Vitale was injured Sternberger was inserted and what do you know, the kid could block. I'm waiting until a few games into the season (4) to get a good feel for the Packers TE group.

I LOVE the Packers signed Lewis. I don't give a dame how old he is when he blocks the way he does. Not to mention Rodgers loves him and trusts him. Remember the goal line play last season when Rodgers is at the line and says "Big Dog" before the snap and then throws the short TD to The Big Dog. That TD helped them win that game.

Deguara is the wildcard. I really like this kid AND he can catch. Personally I'd love for Sternberger and Deguara to take the reins but as long as some one or a few someone's does that's all that matters. I think Sternberger starts as the #1 and proves it on the field quickly in the regular season with Dejuara picking up steam by the end of the year.

I've just never saw WHY all the hype for Big Bob. If he makes the roster and contributes good for him. I'm just not expecting too much.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 01, 2020 at 08:59 am

There were a quite a few plays last year when Sternberger got in, that he was running WIDE open down the field. For whatever the reason was, Rodgers didn't look his way or throw it to him, but the plays showed that he can run right by LB's.
I would not be surprised if he becomes our field stretching TE.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

September 01, 2020 at 02:12 pm

I remember it too.

I agree with Nick. We should wait a few weeks before beginning to hatch conclusions.

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Tingham's picture

September 01, 2020 at 10:33 am

I'm not ready to write off Sternberger based on training camp. If you go to a Bears site they are raving about Jimmy Graham. They are amazed at his ability to make the contested catch and are talking about his great athleticism. Not sure that will translate in to regular season success.

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CoachDino's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:49 pm

It translates into the Bears suck...lol and I feel better about our TE situation after reading your post than I did before - All 4 of our guys are better than JG. It's not his fault his body got old, most of us know the feeling, so it's nothing personal, but he sucked other than a few nice plays he did make in 2019.

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murf7777's picture

September 01, 2020 at 08:17 am

What I want for Xmas is for Deguara to become “rookie of the year”......the odds of that one is very slim but I can hope and wish for a Wonderful present.

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dobber's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:05 am

I just don't see Lewis playing an expanded role in 2020. He played about 45% of the offensive snaps in 2019, and I think that unless he significantly regresses that's about where he'll land in 2020. Remember also that Jimmy Graham played about 60% of the offensive snaps in 2020. Those are the snaps that Tonyan and Sternberger will be fighting for more than anything else. We also have to remember that Graham didn't play a lot of snaps with his hand on the ground. He primarily played in the slot or split out wide where he was essentially the third WR (which might explain why the Packers, who were supposed to showing 'heavier' looks, still recorded 60% of their snaps out of 11 personnel).

Tonyan played just under 20% of the TE snaps in 2020. It was consistent up 'til he got hurt, and consistent after he came back...so you can extrapolate that number of snaps to about 25% of the total if he'd played 16 games. That's not insignificant and I would argue that led to Graham playing more snaps. If you look at snap counts, Graham's snap share increases a little when Tonyan gets hurt, but then decreases markedly when Tonyan returns (which was also about the same time Sternberger was activated).

I don't have the number of routes run and that could tell us more about how Tonyan figures into the scheme in those snap played. Still, I think when the Packers break camp and line up against MN, it's going to be Tonyan getting the bulk of those receiving TE snaps with Sternberger and Deguara cleaning up behind him. I don't know how it will look 6 games in, but I think that's where they'll start,

" Deguara has proven that he has great hands, he is athletic and he can get open. "

Deguara has proven nothing at the NFL level.

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RCPackerFan's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:40 am

I do think we will see more of Tonyan early but by the end of the year I think Sternberger and Deguara will be getting more snaps.

Sternberger missed the first part of practice which may have put him behind? I am not sure if he will not play as much early, but that could be a possibility. I do think he will have a significant role on the offense by mid to late year.

Deguara is a rookie. I wouldn't expect him to be a starter, but I think they have a nice role for him. And i think it will evolve as the season goes.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

September 02, 2020 at 08:42 am

Tonyan is better than most realize. I have been pushing and mentioning Big Bob for past 2 seasons. He should have played more than Graham last year but for the injury. If Tonyan stays healthy look for him to have a monster year.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

September 02, 2020 at 08:42 am

Tonyan is better than most realize. I have been pushing and mentioning Big Bob for past 2 seasons. He should have played more than Graham last year but for the injury. If Tonyan stays healthy look for him to have a monster year.

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stockholder's picture

September 02, 2020 at 09:00 am

Your right on Lewis. No expanded Role. I believed a Ot should be considered. After all, everybody points to his blocking. And IMO Bahk is leaving. I see tipping the play anyway. Deguara can't block yet. I believe Lovett will be used more. Much like Kuhn. He'll put Lewis on the bench. The only chance Deguara plays, will be when Lewis is in there. He's a toy! And listed at H-Back. Currently Tonyan #1. Sterberger #2 Lewis #3 per TE snaps. IMO Sternberger must emerge. Tonyan is to hot and cold. His play, is a splash play here or there. And won't be the solid TE the packers want long term.

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Archie's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:30 am

I am confidant that the TE group as a whole will be an upgrade over the last several seasons. Whether the emerging star will be Tonyan or Sternberger or DeGuara is not yet known. If I had to pick one though, it would be Sternberger. Longer-term, DeGuara will emerge. What we have in Big Bob is much more uncertain but he has been in GB the longest and should know the offense at this point and he is healthy so no more excuses. If Tonyan can't block he better show a lot as a pass catcher. Lewis will be the coach on the field, a tremendous blocker and an occasional check-down target. Next year we could be replacing both Lewis and Tonyan.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:33 am

Sternberger will be a stud sooner rather than later. I think he's the breakout star of the bunch.

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Demon's picture

September 01, 2020 at 04:45 pm

Prettty optimistic about a guy who has done nthing in the NFL so far

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jannes bjornson's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:37 pm

You don't use a three pick to have the guy ride the bench. He will perform; it's not the three ring circus offense any longer. Le Fleur is a football basics guy.

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Oppy's picture

September 01, 2020 at 06:32 pm

1) People underestimate Marcedes Lewis's abilities as a receiver. He's obviously not fast, but he moves well for a big man and has reliable hands. He was known as an excellent blocker but also as a guy who would reliably pull in a catch or three each game to move the sticks while with the Jags. He can still do that when given the opportunity.

2) What to make of this TE group? More young talent at the position than the Packers have had in quite a while. Hopefully that talent turns in some production in 2020. Will depend on if the QB will target the shallow to intermediate depth between the hashes or not.

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Branden Burke's picture

September 01, 2020 at 09:39 pm

I think people get too fixated on where guys sit on the depth chart. My interpretation of the TE position is what I believe the NFL and NBA are trying to transition to. Positionless skill players. Guys that are parts of packages. Tools to create schematical mismatches that can be used in multiple positions. Multiple running backs and multiple TE's capable of running both pass heavy and run heavy plays with similar personnel. Not having to have 3+ wr's on a play to make it more of a passing threat. Being able to spread a defense out with what were traditionally run heavy personnel. That's what makes their scheme tic. The days of 5 wide are dead. We keep the entire playbook open this way and can use deception and scheme to give us the advantage.

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LayingTheLawe's picture

September 01, 2020 at 11:13 pm

Reports seem to indicate Tonyan will be the starter at the outset. Perhaps Sternberger progresses throughout the year and starts to see more time but at this point all the reporting seems to be indicating Big Bob is the primary TE. Lewis will be around, last season he was getting 45 % of snaps or so and you'd expect that to continue unless the younger guys usurp his position. As the article said the Wild Card will be Deguara. Will he be an in line TE or a fullback or both and how much will he see the field? With no preseason we are in the dark more than usual and it will be fun to watch.

Does the 4 headed monster mean they all play and get 25 plays each? Or does somebody separate?

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