Position-by-Position Breakdowns: Tight ends
Published: Thursday, August 29, 2013
Updated: Thursday, August 29, 2013 23:08
Jimmy Gordon was the Bulls’ most prolific receiving threat at tight end last season. He caught 17 passes for 262 yards and two touchdowns – one season after the entire tight ends unit combined for only 11 receptions.
Gordon has bulked up and gotten more physical in his quest to be one of the most versatile players on the offensive side of the ball.
Specifically, he has addressed his route running and worked on timing with sophomore quarterback Joe Licata. As one of three seniors in the tight end unit and the top receiver, Gordon has tried to help the younger players along.
“I was trying to show them what I learned in my four years here and show them what to do and not to do and hopefully they got something out of it,” Gordon said.
Gordon headlines a group that will be crucial to both the ground and air attacks.
The tight ends pride themselves on their strength, speed and physical play, which will be crucial components in the Bulls’ offense.
Gordon is arguably the strongest, fastest and most physical of the tight ends and will certainly play a big role in the offense.
Last season, there was only one player who threw a pass, caught a pass and attempted a rush. That was senior tight end Alex Dennison.
Dennison was featured in a few trick plays last year, which allowed him to pass for a touchdown and rush for two more.
At 6-foot-2, 250 pounds, he’s bigger than the running backs, which makes him dangerous at the goal line. And his experience as a high school quarterback makes him a viable threat to throw a pass, which he did three times last season. All three passes were completions.
Dennison is more than just a triple threat option; he is one of the tight ends’ leaders.
This past summer, the tight ends met every morning for an extra workout session.
Dennison takes particular pride in protecting the Bulls’ talented stable of running backs and thinks that behind this offensive line, senior running back Branden Oliver and company can run for 2,000 yards.
“We take a lot of pride in supporting our running backs and putting them in the positions to make great plays,” Dennison said.
Dennison also pointed out that the team’s talented backfield makes the tight ends’ job much easier.