Jace Amaro TE Texas Tech #22
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Size/Athleticism: Prototypical build for the position in today’s NFL. Has the height teams look for but also the overall size to contribute as a blocker. He’s a tough runner with the ball in his hands. He’ll fight for extra yardage and can be difficult to bring down.
Separation Skills: Not a deep threat, but he has the speed to get down the field and then use his size to win jump balls. He knows how to use his body to shield defenders. Field awareness isn’t great – he doesn’t consistently find the soft spot in the zone and runs himself into coverage sometimes. Route running is extremely lazy at times. He appears to adjust his effort based on whether or not he is one of the primary options. When he explodes off the line, the ball almost always comes to him, or at least to his side of the field. When he’s slow off the snaps and runs a lazy route, ball almost always ends up on opposite side of the field. Has experience lining up all over the field (slot, backfield, on the line and occasionally out wide).
Ball Skills: Elite hand-eye coordinator. Reacts extremely quickly to poorly throw balls, and balls that are fired from short distances. Shows great body control when adjusting to poorly thrown balls.
Blocking: Certainly not elite, but gives a reasonable effort. Appears to give fake hustle sometimes – he’ll fight hard against a defensive back, but conveniently be late to get to his assignment when he’s supposed to engaged a more physical linebacker.
Intangibles: Plenty of red flags get raised. Arrested in March 2012 on felony fraud credit card fraud charges. Ejected from 2012 bowl game and suspended for throwing a punch during the game. Teams will have plenty of questions to ask about his maturity.
Durability: Significant durability concerns. Missed six games in 2012 with a spleen injury. Injured during game in late 2012 and appeared to suffer a concussion (full details not released to media). Suffered torn ACL in high school.
Comments: Amaro has been hyped up as a potential first-round pick and is the top tight end on many media draft boards. The potential is certainly there, and he very well may be the best in this class, but he isn’t an elite prospect. He lacks the dominant size of Gronkowski or the elite athleticism of a Jimmy Graham. Amaro’s ceiling is probably as an Owen Daniels-type tight end – which is certainly a guy worth having, but hard a game-changer. Further complicating his draft status are the character concerns. It’s not out of the question that he could be removed from some draft boards based on concerns about his maturity.