Post Draft Scouting Report: Ryan Izzo, TE and UDFA’s

Does this late round prospect have a chance to make the Patriots 53 man roster?

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

It is time to put a bow on the 2018 NFL Draft. Typically with any teams last pick, the player might be a guy no one really knows a lot about. This year, the Patriots did that with their second to last pick when they chose Keion Crossen. The Patriots final pick however was a guy many draftniks not only knew, but had a much higher grade on. I personally had given Izzo a 5th round pick and was shocked he lasted as long as he did. On the other spectrum, I didn’t put Izzo on my Big Board because I thought the Tight End room in New England was really crowded and I didn’t think the value of a mid round Tight End pick was there. To get a mid round talent with one of the final picks of the draft changes things however, and I am fully on board with the pick. So, does Ryan Izzo have a chance to make the team despite his late round draft slot? Let’s look at his game and find out.


Izzo is one of the best, if not the best in line blockers from this draft class. He has strong, active hands and he sticks with blocks much like a good offensive lineman would. He has good size for the position from a height and weight perspective. He is a feisty blocker in the run game and takes pride in his blocking. He is a reliable pass catcher and fights for every yard after the catch. He is a high character guy who does the little things to for the good of the team.


Izzo has shorter than ideal arms and will lose against longer armed defenders. He is an okay athlete, but does not have the speed to be a difference maker as a pass catcher. He does not have the quickness or change of direction to create separation and needs to be better at winning contested catches. Izzo is not much of a threat after the catch.


While Izzo does not have the elite athletic skills that so many teams look for nowadays at the Tight End position, he could carve out a role with the Patriots as a blocker who can be relied on to catch the ball if need be. He won’t ever be guy you build an offensive game plan around, but he is such a hard nosed, tough, blocker in both the running and passing game that he might make this team over a much more expensive guy like Dwayne Allen. Not bad for a guy who was drafted just a few picks before the draft ended.



The Patriots signed a few interesting UDFA’s after the draft. Here are three guys I think have a shot at making the roster either this year or down the road.

JC Jackson, Maryland: So, I had a 4/5 grade on this guy. I liked his ability to plant his foot and come back quickly towards the ball. He has the speed to run with even the fastest receivers down field. He is an aggressive player in both the passing and run game. He had some major off field issues at Florida which led to him being kicked off the team and probably a main reason for his fall in the draft. He is a little slow in his recognition skills and relied on his speed to bail him out. The tools are there and he has a shot to make this team.

Ralph Webb, Vanderbilt: Webb is a north south runner who runs with good contact balance. He does not have much in terms of elusiveness, but was very productive in the SEC on a bad team. He does a decent job in pass protection and can catch the ball. Webb will most likely be a practice squad candidate with the Patriots crowded backfield.

George Atkins, Georgia: Atkins is a true fire hydrant in the middle. He is built low to the ground and is a true gap plugger. He has some athleticism and long arms for his size. He flashed some ability to shoot through gaps, but his role will be to occupy blockers so others can make plays. Again, his role this year will probably be on the practice squad, but if he can show enough there might be a long term job for him on the roster with the potential turnover at the position.







19 Responses to “Post Draft Scouting Report: Ryan Izzo, TE and UDFA’s”

  1. macspak says:

    Dorsett taking a to $150K.. Amazing there is so much depth at WR. I believe the Pats have no idea which actually will make the team. True open competition. Cases could be made for so many to stick. I’m not even going to hazard a guess.

    • GM-in-Training says:

      I think the Pats hope to have so many awesome WR they can trade a couple for picks or backup LB in late August.

  2. GM-In-Training says:

    I hear Ryan Izzo can really block, but boy, when you look at the spiderweb graph of his athletic measurables…he sure seems meh.

    I keep looking for the mismatch TE of the future.

    For an in-line TE, that means 6’6″, 260-270#, long arms, as fast as most LB, great at using his body to shield out LB/SS, and a good route runner to create separation.

    For a move TE, that means at least 6’2″, 245#, faster than most LB, sudden, a really good route runner. I keep wondering why Will Tye isn’t that guy? He ran a 4.57 40 out of school. He was super productive in college and often saw double coverage. His 3-cone was only 7.21, but still, you’d think he could be a special teams ace and move TE with a year in the system. I don’t know if they have that role this year, although one of the other camp TE is just as much a fullback type as Tye. We’ll see.

    • steve earle says:

      That mismatch TE of the future is what everyone is looking for league wide. Not seeing him currently but he may come along we just have to keep looking and hope we get him I guess.

    • steve earle says:

      Read that TE Allen is expecting to prove to coaches and teammates that he can be trusted this season. If he can that’s a positive but it’s a prove it camp for him this summer I expect.

  3. Stephen J says:

    Wow the Patriots signed undrafted free agent WR Darren Andrews from UCLA.

    The only reason he went undrafted was because he tore his ACL on Nov 3 2017 against Utah in the 4th quarter. Through nine games he led UCLA in all receiving categories. He had 60 receptions for 773 yards and 10 TD’s. During his pro day on March 15th he mentioned that he was on pace to be cleared medically in 4 months. Which would be approximately July 15th. During his pro day he measured in at 5’10 3/8″ and 197 lbs. He also put up 19 reps in the bench.

    Darren Andrews was named to the AP All-Pac-12 team 1st Team in 2017 and was a semi finalist for the Biletnikoff Award. On Oct 26th he was listed as the 6th overall efficient WR in the country by The Athletic. They created a formula that accounts for yards, scoring, yards per attempt (catches and targets), fumbles and opponent strength. The top 10 can be seen here

    So it looks like the Patriots took advantage of another injury situation and picked up a good player at a cheap price.

  4. kevinz says:

    Seen waived Garcia id think health reason right?

    • macspak says:

      Must be. Condition must have been worse than thought and precludes him from resuming a pro career. Strike him from the list.

      • Yohy says:

        Did they give up on him too soon? Couldn’t they afford to wait a little while longer to see if he fully recovered?
        An odd off season continues

        • steve earle says:

          Thing about blood clots in the lungs, can be fatal. He was lucky and probably be on blood thinners the rest of his life. Even than it’s no guarantee. This is very probably the only thing that makes sense for the young man. Best wishes to him.

        • macspak says:

          A BB trademark is that he doesn’t wait. If he is wrong in a personnel decision he cuts his losses and doesn’t let where they were drafted influence. Obviously the Patriots have a much better understanding of the true nature of the medical condition and that Garcia isn’t come back to full health for a pro football player.

    • Stephen J says:

      From what I read it seems that Garcia was cleared by a doctor he was using in March but either was never cleared by the Patriots doctors or had a set back.

  5. macspak says:

    I think it is almost a given that Izzo and/or Niklas replace Allen.

    • steve earle says:

      Barring any injuries at the position I agree. Allen’s contract is just to much and I don’t think he agrees to come down enough to make it worthwhile. Could be wrong but don’t think so.

    • Russell says:

      Yes hard to see TE Allen staying on the team, to costly.

  6. kevinz says:

    I wonder if dawson and jackson were friends at Florida mayb Duke can help him stay in check

    • steve earle says:

      I was intreagued by Jackson early last fall but his off field issues made me shy away from him. He definitely has skills and hoping the Pat’s environment ( so better then So. Fla) may bring out the best in the guy. Have to wait and see I guess?

  7. kevinz says:

    Hoping webb finds a way thought would be a good compliment to Sony use Webb like GA did chubb then use Sony like Saints did kamara

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