Well, hello there readers!
Welcome to another edition of A Clare Perspective: The Tight Endage Chronicles!
Now, I know that I harp on about the tight end position on a regular basis. However, everyone has their favourites, right? That being said, I’d like to think I bring a varied perspective, a Clare Perspective, on a topic that you may possibly find interesting too.
So let’s recap….
Throughout the season, Ryan Izzo has been toiling away in his tight-end-one (TE1) position. He is a reasonably decent blocker and has caught a couple of passes. While he is not an elite athlete, the kid has thrown on his ‘big-boy’ pants, buckled up (buttercup) and done his best. But, if we are being honest, he really should be New England’s TE2. The problem is we Patriots fans are used to a stud like Robert Gronkowski at TE1.
Putting your opinion of Ryan Izzo aside, do you think perhaps (as fans) we are harsh on whoever suits up as a tight end as a New England Patriot who just isn’t as good as Gronk or Aaron Hernandez?
The trouble is, as you are probably aware by now, our two rookie tight ends have hit the injury reserve list. As such, they will not be seen for a couple more weeks…not that we saw much of them to begin with. Dalton Keene showed a little flavour, but alas a neck injury is not something with which to play fast and loose. We are presently unsure for how long he may be unavailable. Devin Asiasi remains a mystery that, folks, is beyond me particularly at this point in time.
So, Coach Bill answered our cries (okay just mine then, haha) by signing San Diego State’s David Wells to the practice squad. Wells spent time in camp with the Kansas City Chiefs last year and is a tall guy at six-foot-six and two hundred and sixty pounds. The roster signed Jordan Thomas will hopefully be available for the game against the Houston Texans Sunday 22nd November. I’m pretty sure you won’t be surprised when I tell you this six foot five, two hundred and seventy seven pound, 83 wearing tight endage, with hands that span 11 5/8 (!!) has me a little bit excited. Particularly when his size means blocking and if he can block the heck out of a few defensive line guys not only will Cam Newton be more protected but Ryan Izzo may get a few throws. I know you know that will make this little tight end fan very happy (as long as he keeps hold of the ball that is). Plus, I can imagine hands that large, Thomas might actually show us some great ball security.
Now one big guy doth not a tight end package make, BUT we have been dragging through the last one and a half seasons without much at tight end at all. A physical position it is hit hard by injury and the Patriots aren’t alone in their plight. With the likes of Zack Ertz of the Eagles out for a possible six weeks with an ankle injury and George Kittle for the 49ers suffering a broken bone in his foot (reportedly to miss around eight weeks and has been placed on injury reserve) elite tights ends are in short supply.
And so we wait in anticipation at how the season continues with… or without… tight endage.
Go Pats !
-Clare L. Cooper is a Columnist and Special Contributor for Full Press Coverage. Her New England Patriots insight can be found @FPC_Patriots