The NFL draft next spring will provide an additional opportunity to add another tight end to the mix. As mentioned, this current class of tight ends is not as deep as it has been in recent years, but there are some options.
There is no consensus first-round pick in the 2020 class, but Brycen Hopkins of Purdue is the cream of a thin crop and is generally considered to be a second-round talent. The Redskins lack a second-round selection, but it’s possible that they could trade down a few spots in the first round and gain a chance at selecting the Boilermaker.
Hunter Bryant of the Washington Huskies is another second-round talent, but he has an injury history and is similar in size to Jordan Reed. His blocking skills are somewhat questionable.
Moving on to the next level of tight ends, we have Jared Pinkney of Vanderbilt. He is a tight end the Redskins could select in the third round. Pinkney is a talented receiver, but could use some refinement with his blocking skills.
Colby Parkinson of Stanford could be the best overall option and will likely be available early in the fourth round. At 6-7 and 250, he has the size to succeed at the next level. In fact, Parkinson could add another 10 to 15 pounds of bulk/muscle to his frame and still be effective. He is a solid receiver and a good blocker. Stanford tight ends tend to do well in the NFL and Parkinson is on track to have the same success.
These tight ends could be available in the fourth or fifth rounds and have varying degrees of skill sets: Mitchell Wilcox of South Florida, Albert Okwuegbunam of Missouri, and Cheyenne O’Grady of Arkansas. Keep an eye on Okwuegbunam – he could rise a bit on some draft boards.
Is tight end the biggest need for the Redskins going into the offseason? Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis are at the end or near the end of their careers and Jeremy Sprinkle can’t carry the load by himself. Look for the Redskins to add at least two new tight ends after this season and the combination of free agency and the draft will provide several opportunities to upgrade the position.