Dallas Goedert Scouting Report By Charlie Campbell
Regularly made some spectacular highlight-reel catches
High points the ball well
Excellent body control
Quick down the seam
Tracks the ball well
Adjusts well to the ball
Finds the soft spots in zone coverage
Tough for defensive backs to tackle
Fearless to make leaping grabs
Injury issues in college
Drops some passes
Doesn't generate separation
Summary: The 2017 NFL Draft was a banner year at the tight end position with three being selected in the first round and two more going in the top half of the second round. The 2018 NFL Draft is not close to as strong at the tight end position, but one tight end who has gotten some media praise is South Dakota State's Dallas Goedert. There have been some mock drafts that have Goedert going in the first round and rate him as the top tight end in the draft class. However after speaking to sources at a handful of teams, none of them had Goedert graded in the first round.
The highest grade among those five teams was a second-rounder. Two teams had him graded in the third round, and two teams had a high fourth-round grade on him. The senior amassed 72 receptions for 1,111 yards and seven touchdowns in 2017. He put up even better production as a junior with 92 receptions for 1,293 yards and 11 touchdowns.
"[Goedert is] not a great route-runner and wasn't a separation guy," said a NFC director of college scouting. "He is more possessional and doesn't win with suddenness or quickness. He had lots of drops, but you counter that with some spectacular catches. They threw him a million balls, so some drops are going to happen. We just don't see him as a special mismatch weapon."
For the NFL, Goedert has the ability to contribute as a receiver. While he will struggle to get separation from NFL linebackers or safeties, he uses his size and high-point ability to make catches over defenders. Goedert will be an asset in the red zone with his skills to sky high and make tremendous catches with body control and uncanny one-handed skills. Goedert is adept at finding the soft spot in zone coverage, and his size makes him tough to tackle for defensive backs. Thus, Goedert could be a quality receiving tight end in the pros, although he probably won't be elite given his lack of speed, of suddenness, and of an ability to separate.
As a blocker, Goedert has the potential to be a solid contributor in the NFL. He has a thick frame with the size to match up on front seven defenders. Given the big jump in competition, Goedert will need some development in his technique to be effective at sustaining his blocks against NFL defensive ends and linebackers.
A few of the team sources also mentioned that there were injury concerns with Goedert and that his combine medical exam was going to be important. If his medical profile isn't too alarming, Goedert appears likely to be a second-day pick in a weak year at the tight end position. He looks like he stands a good chance of being a third-round pick.
Player Comparison: Jack Doyle. Doyle has been a nice contributor as a receiving tight end for the Colts and also can contribute as a blocker. Doyle (6-6, 260) and Goedert are similarly sized with the physical talent to contribute as receivers despite lacking elite speed or suddenness to get separation. Over his NFL career, Goedert could be a tight end who is similar to Doyle.
NFL Matches: Pittsburgh, Miami, Baltimore, Green Bay, New England, Jacksonville, Houston
Pittsburgh needs a tight end upgrade and is are in 'win-now' mode. Goedert could give the Steelers a receiving weapon to use in the red zone.
On Day 2 or in the mid-rounds, there are a lot of potential landing spots for Goedert. Miami needs a three-down starting tight end because Julius Thomas is just a role player. Baltimore also needs a tight end upgrade as Ben Watson is ancient for a NFL player and Maxx Williams hasn't panned out yet.
The Packers need a starting tight end. Martellus Bennett didn't last one year in Green Bay, and Richard Rodgers is entering free agency. Green Bay could use a receiving upgrade over Rodgers. Even if he's re-signed, that wouldn't eliminate Goedert as a potential mid-round pick for the Packers.
Bennett signed with New England, but he's clearly a declining player. The Patriots could consider Goedert as a tight end to pair with Rob Gronkowski. Goedert would give them some depth protection if Gronkowski gets injured again.
The Jaguars could use a long-term starting tight end as Marcedes Lewis turns 34 after the 2018 NFL Draft. The Texans have three picks in the third round and need more receiving talent at tight end. C.J. Fiedorowicz might be forced into retirement because of concussions, and that could make tight end an even more urgent issue for Houston.