The NFL Scouting Combine is here. On Saturday, NFL Network will be covering the combine workouts for quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends — which begin at Noon (Arrowhead Time). Here is more information is how to watch through the weekend.
Here are four tight ends for Kansas City Chiefs fans to watch.
1. Dalton Kincaid | Utah | 6’4” | 240 lbs
During his press availability on Friday, Kincaid revealed he had met with the Chiefs in a formal interview. Kincaid is among the most polished tight ends in this year’s draft class — and might have the best hands of any player.
Dalton Kincaid has top notch hand-eye coordination and is a fluid mover in space who consistently picks up yards after the catch. Just an overall very good athlete. pic.twitter.com/Zy8sKcKEgg— Nate Tice (@Nate_Tice) February 22, 2023
While he is on the smaller side for a tight end, Kincaid makes up for it with elite route running and a large catch radius. His ability to make circus catches look routine helped him rack up 890 receiving yards and eight touchdowns during his senior season at the University of Utah. A good showing at the Combine could push him into the first-round territory.
2. Josh Whyle | Cincinnati | 6’6” | 250 lbs
The Chiefs have also interviewed a tight end from a familiar source of talent: the University of Cincinnati, where Kansas City’s superstar tight end Travis Kelce played. On Friday, Whyle announced he had interviewed with Kansas City.
A throwback style of player, Whyle uses physicality to win reps. With the Bearcats, he used his massive frame to be an effective blocker in their power running game.
While his career production is modest at best — 326 receiving yards and three touchdowns in 2022— he does have the size and skill to become a consistent red zone threat in the NFL.
Josh Whyle is incredible. pic.twitter.com/IgWm2iaseZ— GoBeercats (@GoBeercats) August 6, 2021
His route-running ability will require some development, but the tools and intangibles are there.
3. Leonard Taylor | Cincinnati | 6’5” | 255 lbs
The Chiefs have actually interviewed two Cincinnati tight ends. On Friday, Taylor announced he had also met with Kansas City.
For the Bearcats, Whyle and Taylor split time at tight end — and like Whyle, Taylor’s production was modest. He recorded just 170 yards (and two touchdowns) on 18 receptions during his injury-plagued senior season.
While his production was not there, his physical tools likely intrigued the Chiefs. He not only possesses the prototypical frame of an NFL tight end, but has also shown he can run routes at a high level.
Cincinnati TE Leonard Taylor showing some wiggle at the top of his route to create separation for the TD.— Bobby Football (@Rob__Paul) January 24, 2023
It’s a deep TE class in the 2023 NFL Draft but Taylor has the size and physical traits to gain some steam at the @ShrineBowl. pic.twitter.com/BKEyqhgn3L
Given his frame, Taylor has the potential to become a productive receiving tight end. A good Combine performance will likely raise his draft stock.
4. Sam LaPorta | Iowa | 6’4” | 249 lbs
While there has been no report that the Chiefs have met with LaPorta, his skill set is very impressive. In his senior season with the University of Iowa, he collected 657 yards (but just one touchdown) on 58 receptions while playing in an abysmal offense that looked like it came from 1989.
LaPorta has a smaller sample size of incredible plays than the rest of this TE class, but he has the hands to be a TE1 anywhere he is taken. Not the biggest physical build, but he has some explosion to his game. pic.twitter.com/nzfeXfr8Gn— Caleb James (@CJScoobs) February 18, 2023
Like Kansas City’s Jody Fortson, LaPorta is a convert from wide receiver. He used his compact and explosive frame to haul in 50/50 balls and rumble for yards after the catch. With good hands (and above-average run-blocking skills), he will be a scheme fit for almost any team.
If not for the Hawkeyes’ offense, LaPorta could easily have been a Day 1 selection. At the Combine, he will have the chance to showcase his physical skills — and could rise up the draft boards.