Packers prospect profile: TE Eric Ebron
Eric Ebron, TE North Carolina, 6-4, 250 pounds Hometown: Greensboro, NC
40 time: 4.60
Vertical jump: 32″
225 lb. bench: 24 reps
Broad jump: 10′
News and Notes:
Second-team All-American in 2013. . . semi-finalist for Mackey award (most outstanding tight end in college football). . . had 973 receiving yards in 2013, breaking Vernon Davis’ ACC record. . . started at least one game in all four years at North Carolina. . . was second-leading receiver on the team during his sophomore season
What they’re saying about him:
- CBSSports.com: Smooth, gliding athlete with easy acceleration to speed past defenders in coverage and finish. Agile feet and dangerous after the catch to create with quick cuts to make defenders miss. Quick release off the LOS with route fluidity and natural flexibility. Smooth adjustments to pluck the ball with his hands away from his body – large catching radius. Physical when he wants as a blocker with strong initial power at the point of attack. Very good toughness and plays unintimidated and confident. Good football awareness and plays alert. Versatile experience lining up in-line, but mostly in the slot – also plays on special teams coverage. Still far from his ceiling. Still developing his body with room to add bulk and get stronger. Still learning how to use his size to his advantage. Needs to show more authority in his routes and is too easily redirected – needs to be more physical in this area to match up in tight spaces. Needs to be more aggressive and strong at the catch point, especially in contested situations. Has his share of focus drops and needs to be more consistent finishing catches. Good length, but won’t overwhelm defenders in the run game. Blocking technique needs developing – somewhat untested as an in-line blocker. Room to refine and sharpen his routes. Right shoulder injury in 2013.
- NFL.com: Outstanding athletic ability and receiving skills. Threatens every level. Advanced route runner. Releases cleanly and accelerates into patterns. Pierces the seam and is a mismatch vs. man coverage — regularly bested defensive backs. Terrific balance, agility and body control. Catches cleanly off his frame. Makes one-handed grabs look routine. Big catch radius. Catches on the move and has an extra gear to pile up yards. Will be a 21-year-old rookie. Lacks ideal height and bulk. Can improve as a blocker, both in-line and on the move — could stand to improve technique, physicality and finish. Not equipped to lock horns with NFL defensive ends. Inconsistent adjusting to and fitting on moving targets. Blocking effort does not parallel that of receiving. Could stand to play with more consistent intensity and focus. Occasional concentration drop. Ordinary touchdown production. Cannot be used as a fullback.
- As I always disclaim, this is a “highlight” reel. For a more comprehensive look (12 minutes long), here is another video of Ebron vs. Duke this past season: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJ7E3NbfVTo
- Lined up in the slot majority of the time at UNC and very fluid in his routes off the line of scrimmage
- Good runner after the catch and appears quicker than his 40 time indicates. Picked up additional yardage on short passes
- Seemingly good hands and made a few nice one-handed catches
- Nothing jumps off the tape on his blocking, which is already described as a need area for Ebron. He was badly beaten on a few occasions
- Did play on special teams in college but was nothing special. Had a few block in the back penalties. Blocking is not his forte
- Caught a few balls in traffic and seems to concentrate well
- He kind of reminds you of a tight end who was most recently in Green Bay and similar in size, doesn’t he?
If drafted by the Packers:
Ebron would have to be Green Bay’s first-round pick if he’s coming to the Packers. He won’t last far into round two if he does happen to slip out of the first. His athletic ability has him touted as one of the best tight ends in this upcoming draft. While his measurables seem impressive to you and I, they are not any more than average at the NFL level. Still and as I mention above, I see a little bit of Jermichael Finley in Ebron when watching him. He is also compared to San Francisco’s Vernon Davis, but I don’t see Ebron playing as “big” as Davis does. Ebron would keep that presence alive down the middle in the passing game. His blocking would need to improve greatly and especially if he is not ideal coming out of the backfield, where the Packers like to use their tight ends. He won’t be a good contributor right away on special teams which is something head coach Mike McCarthy likes to use his young guys for, especially his tight ends. If the Packers take Ebron, they see him as their tight end of the future and a replacement for what Finley was and was supposed to be. He needs some work and development but he seems to have that ability to grow. The Packers are no strangers to a tight end with tons of potential.——————
Jason Perone is an independent sports blogger writing about the Packers on AllGreenBayPackers.comFollow Jason Perone: