Top 10 Tight Ends in the NCAA for 2016
10) Blake Jarwin, Oklahoma St., Sr.
Blake Jarwin was a first team All-Big 12 selection in 2015 for the Cowboys. Jarwin caught 17 passes for 200 yards and two touchdowns last season. He was eighth on the team last season in receptions and receiving yards and tied for sixth in receiving touchdowns. Jarwin’s best performance last season came against West Virginia where he caught three passes for 37 yards and a touchdown in a 33-26 victory. Jarwin returns in 2016 looking to play a bigger role on the pass heavy Cowboys offense.
9) Josiah Price, Michigan State, Sr.
Josiah Price was a third team All-Big Ten selection last season for the Michigan State Spartans. Price caught 23 passes for 267 yards and six touchdowns for the Spartans last season. Price tied for sixth in the Big Ten last season in receiving touchdowns, fourth on the team in receiving yards, and second on the team in receiving touchdowns. His best performance last season came in the Spartans season opener where Price caught three passes for 49 yards and a touchdown in a 37-24 victory over Western Michigan. Price returns as one of the best tight ends in the Big Ten for 2016.
8) Mark Andrews, Oklahoma, Soph.
Mark Andrews was a first team All-Big 12 selection in 2015 and quite the offensive weapon for the Oklahoma Sooners. Andrews caught 19 passes for 318 yards and seven touchdowns last season. Andrews was tenth in the Big 12 in receiving touchdowns, second on the team last season and fifth on the team in receiving yards. Andrews’ best performance last season came against Tulsa in a 52-38 victory where he caught three passes for 87 yards and two touchdowns. Andrews returns looking to be a spark on what should be another good Oklahoma Sooner offense.
7) Ryan Yurachek, Marshall, Jr.
Ryan Yurachek returns to the Thundering Herd after quite the sophomore season. Yurachek caught 44 passes for 417 yards and nine touchdowns. Yurachek was fourth in the Conference USA last season in receiving touchdowns, third on the team in receiving yards, and first on the team in receiving touchdowns. Yurachek’s best performance came against UConn where he caught five passes for 56 yards and a touchdown in a 16-10 St. Petersburg Bowl victory. Yurachek returns hoping to lead the Thundering Herd to another bowl season with his offensive efforts.
6) Jaylen Samuels, NC State, Jr.
Jaylen Samuels had quite the sophomore season for NC State at FB/TE to earn first team All-ACC honors in 2015. Samuels caught 65 passes for 597 yards and seven touchdowns while also rushing 56 times for 368 yards and nine touchdowns. While a bit undersized at 5’11, Samuels was a threat for the Wolfpack off the line at TE and out of the backfield at fullback. His best performance last season came against Clemson where Samuels recorded 8 catches for 73 yards and a touchdown as well as six rushes for 65 yards and a touchdown in a 56-41 loss. Samuels returns hoping to right the ship for the Wolfpack this season as their key offensive weapon.
5) Evan Engram, Mississippi, Sr.
Evan Engram was a second team All-SEC selection for his efforts at the tight end position in 2015. Engram recorded 38 receptions for 464 receiving yards and two touchdowns. He was second on the team in receptions, fifth in receiving yards, and sixth in receiving touchdowns last season for the Rebels. His best performance last season came in a 38-17 win over LSU where Engram snagged 5 catches for 58 yards and a touchdown. Engram returns to the Rebels in 2016 hoping to take some pressure off of Chad Kelly.
4) Bucky Hodges, Virginia Tech, Jr.
Bucky Hodges was a second team All-ACC selection for the Hokies last season. Hodges caught 40 passes for 530 yards and six touchdowns and also carried the ball 5 times for 27 yards and a rushing touchdown in 2015. Hodges was eighth in the ACC in receiving touchdowns, third on team in receiving yards, and third in receptions. Hodges’ best performance last season came against Duke where he caught five passes for 101 yards and three receiving touchdowns in a 45-43 loss. With the addition of a new and improved pass heavy Justin Fuente offense, expect Hodges’ numbers to take a jump in 2016.
3) OJ Howard, Alabama, Sr.
OJ Howard had a coming out party in the National Championship game for the Alabama Crimson Tide last season. Howard caught five passes for 208 yards and two touchdowns on the way to a 45-40 victory despite catching zero touchdown passes in prior games. His 208 receiving yards were a career high and a heck of a way to end the season on a good individual note. Howard enters 2016 with higher expectations as the Crimson Tide look to repeat as National Champions.
2) Jordan Leggett, Clemson, Sr.
Jordan Leggett was a finalist for the John Mackey Award last season and a first team All-ACC selection for the Clemson Tigers in 2015. Leggett had 40 receptions for 525 receiving yards and eight touchdowns last season for the Tigers. Leggett was tied for second in the ACC last season in receiving touchdowns but first on the team, fourth on the team in receiving yards, and third on the team in receptions. His best performance last season came against the Florida State Seminoles where Leggett snagged six catches for 101 yards in a 23-13 Clemson victory. Leggett returns hoping to lead the Tigers offense along with Deshaun Watson and Wayne Gallman to another National Championship game.
1) Jake Butt, Michigan, Sr.
Jake Butt was a first team All-American selection for the Michigan Wolverines last season. Butt had 51 receptions for 654 yards and three touchdowns in 2015. Butt was third on the team in receiving yards, second on the team in receptions, and third in receiving touchdowns. His best performance last season was against Rutgers where Butt caught four passes for 102 yards in a 49-16 victory. Butt returns looking to be the main catalyst in the Wolverines offense in 2016.