Who are the tight ends who’ll matter in the 2021 NFL Draft, and what’s the college perspective on all of the top prospects?


2021 NFL Draft Tight End Rankings

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It’s not a loaded year for the position – there are a whole lot of flier prospects who you don’t really need to take unless you have a project in mind – but there’s enough up top to help the cause, and there’s one guy in particular who might juts be an all-timer.

However, last year’s class of receivers really was solid, and this one appears to be even stronger. From the college perspective, the top tight ends in the 2021 NFL Draft are …

15. Dylan Soehner, Iowa State

Size: 6-7, 268

The Good: He’s a big body with a great frame. While he’s a tight end who can be used as a No. 3 guy, there’s an outside chance he could add more weight and take on an even more physical role. He wasn’t used much as a receiver, but he can catch.

The Not-So-Good: Again, he wasn’t used much  as a receiver. He might look the part, but he only caught 26 passes for 312 yards and one score. He’s not going to scare anyone deep.

NFL Draft College Perspective Thought: Charlie Kolar was/is Iowa State’s star tight end, but Soehner has an NFL body and look with a shot at making a roster as a developmental prospect.

Projected Round: Free Agent


14. Miller Forrestall, Alabama

Size: 6-5, 244

The Good: A tough guy who made himself into a factor on a national championship team, he’s a solid midrange target who caught 18 passes with five scores over the last two years. He can block a bit and he’ll fight to get open.

The Not-So-Good: The NFL tools aren’t there. He’s a want-to prospect who doesn’t have the downfield speed to be a regular factor in the passing game, and he’s not bulky enough to be any sort of a dominant blocker.

NFL Draft College Perspective Thought: There’s a shot he makes a roster as an H-back blocker who can thrive on special teams and find a role as a midrange No. 3 target, but it’ll be a stretch. He’ll be a tough cut, though.

Projected Round: Free Agent


13. MatT Bushman, BYU

Size: 6-5, 245

The Good: When he’s healthy, he’s got the potential to be among the better receiving tight ends in the draft. He stretched the field, averaged close to 14 yards per catch, and caught 125 passes – he was one of Zach Wilson’s guys – in his three years. He’s a true target who’ll suck in everything that comes his way, but …

The Not-So-Good: He’s coming off an Achilles heel injury that cost him all of last year. Not bulky, he’s not going to do much as a blocker at the next level and he needs to get his burst back after getting hurt.

NFL Draft College Perspective Thought: A top target for the Cougars, there might be a nice payoff for someone who’s willing to be patient. Don’t expect him to ever block, but if and when he’s back to 100%, he could grow into a nice No. 2, third down only pass catching option.

Projected Round: Sixth


12. Nick Eubanks, Michigan

Size: 6-5, 245

The Good: There’s enough there to hope for more. He’s got good hands, good athleticism, and he can move enough to grow into a good target and a potential strong midrange target, but …

The Not-So-Good: He’s not enough of a blocker for his size, he’s not a dangerous enough target to worry about, and it’s going to take some work to take all he brings and make him into a fantastic NFL tight end.

NFL Draft College Perspective Thought: There’s sleeper ability here. A huge recruit for the program, he caught just 45 passes with six scores in his four years and wasn’t ever able to blow up. He’s got the tools to be a nice late round flier.

Projected Round: Sixth


11. Kylen Granson, SMU

Size: 6-2, 241

The Good: The receiving skills are all in place to keep throwing the ball his way. He grabbed 129 career passes for close to 2,000 yards and 16 touchdowns, thriving as a playmaker for SMU over his last two years. He’s got the speed to challenge down the field and make big things happen, and …

The Not-So-Good: He doesn’t have the size. He’s built like a fullback, he doesn’t have too much of a catching radius, and he’s not enough of a blocker to overcome the shortcomings. He might not quite look the part, but …

NFL Draft College Perspective Thought: He started his career out at Rice, transferred over to SMU, and he was productive for all four years. A true H-back, he can be used as a runner as well as a receiver as a nice late value get for the back end of the roster.

Projected Round: Sixth

NEXT: 2021 NFL Draft Tight End Rankings Top Ten