2014 NFL Draft Profile: Austin Seferian-Jenkins

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Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Eric Ebron and Jace Amaro are widely considered the premier tight ends in the 2014 NFL Draft class, not as well known is Washington’s Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

Seferian-Jenkins isn’t coming off a very impressive junior campaign, but in the Kraft Fight Hunter Bowl he reminded us why he’ll make for an NFL-caliber tight end. The Huskies standout hauled in three passes for 37 yards and a touchdown, an exclamation point on a decorated career in the Pacific Northwest.

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Seferian-Jenkins held the Washington record for tight ends with 110 receptions, 1,390 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns all before he even touched the turf for his junior season. He also took home the John Mackey Award as the nation’s top tight end in 2013.

The 6-foot-7, 270-pound tight end has a broad frame with long arms and presents a mismatch for almost every defender. He has exceptional body control and terrific hands, as well as good concentration while hauling in passes and the toughness to come down with the grab despite being hit.

Seferian-Jenkins will have to improve his blocking when he gets to the NFL. Despite his massive size, he plays with a bit more finesse than he does power. And while his frame presents a huge target for quarterbacks, he doesn’t have superior straight-line speed to run past defenders. Off the field, Seferian-Jenkins was suspended for the first game of the 2013 season after being charged with a DUI.

The tight end is ranked No. 35 overall by Rotoworld, earning comparisons to the Chicago Bears’ Martellus Bennett who has emerged as one of the best pass-catchers from the in-line spot in recent years. He’s ranked No. 46 by CBS Sports, the third-rated tight end, and a projected late- to second-round selection.

The Miami Dolphins could be in the market for a tight end in 2014. Dustin Keller was injured before he could even suit up for the Fins, and a huge target like Seferian-Jenkins could make life a lot easier for Ryan Tannehill as he enters his third year.

The Arizona Cardinals would be a great fit for Seferian-Jenkins. He could join a receiving corps that already features Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd, but because the team has a number of needs they’ll have to hope he’s around in the second round.

Also, the New Orleans Saints are a team to keep an eye on. The team will do all it can to re-sign Jimmy Graham or even just franchise him, but should negotiations go awry they could nab a similar prospect in Seferian-Jenkins as an insurance policy.

Sam Spiegelman is a native New Yorker covering sports in New Orleans. He likes Game of Thrones way too much. Tweet him @samspiegs.
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