OJ Howard   TE/WR   Alabama 


OJ Howard has excellent athletic talent with hands so soft babies are signing petitions for him to change their diapers. He is a long striding athlete making it easy for him to gain advantage and separate in close quarters around the red zone. His size and length allows him to have a big catch radius adjusting easily to the ball in the air. He also will go over the middle going down low to catch balls against contested coverage on slant routes. This along with his size and bulk gives him a big time advantage against matchups. OJ is a smooth gliding athlete who fools a lot of opponents with his speed and is tough to tackle in the open field. He is like a tomahawk missile attacking a defense short or long and with excellent precision. Look at it this way, he is big and strong and has excellent speed and posses those soft like diaper changing hands to catch the ball. Tell me… doesn’t that sound more like a receiver than a Tight End? It does to me.

OJ is not the type of Tight End who is a ferocious in line, three point stance blocker. He is not bad in space and does a good job in pass protection but in line well from a three point stance, all I can say is the NFL is a lot different than college and you’re wasting his talent to impact if you do that. OJ will need to learn how to run routes better but that should not be a problem. OJ is the type of receiver who is open when he looks like he is not open so gaining the trust of his QB is essential.

For me personally OJ is a “move receiver” who plays the slot, goes into motion and becomes a matchup nightmare for linebackers, safeties and nickel slot cover corners to match up against. In the red zone I’d move him to the outside to give him space to use his long strides, body and soft like diaper changing hands to catch contested balls for touchdowns. OJ should be one of the keys to a team’s passing offense and asking him to block like a tight end from a three point stance should not be the main requirement. All a team should ask of him is to block like a wide receiver / H-Back and he does that very well. The key to how well OJ impacts at the next level will be the offensive coordinator and quarterback. If he gets selected and used the same way Alabama has used him than OJ’s ability to impact will be null and void like it was for his college team in the passing game. A smart team will use him as I suggested and that is when you will see OJ‘s true talents come to light. OJ has the talent to impact like Redskins Jordan Reed and Seahawks Jimmy Graham. Both of those receivers are used all over the offense and not as in line blocking Tight Ends just because someone decided (because of their size) to call them Tight Ends.

Drew Boylhart  JAN.2017