Ranking the top 10 tight ends in 2024 NFL Draft

The Post’s Ryan Dunleavy lists the top 10 tight ends in this year’s NFL Draft, based on evaluations and conversations with league officials.

The nightmarish matchup changed beyond formation, as he topped 55 catches for the third year in a row and scored 26 total touchdowns. He combined breakaway speed and tackle breaks to rack up yards after the catch (8.5 yards per reception). Aspiring blocker. How early is it to draft a tight end?

2. JaTavion Sanders, Texas, 6-4, 245

He plays like a big receiver with long strides and separation. If not, he boxes defenders out and forces them to contest the catch. Bottom line: Career failed four times. Not ready to take on the responsibility of blocking every down. Core special teamer.

Ja’Tavion Sanders had just four career drops at Texas. Getty Images

3. Jared Wiley, TCU, 6-6, 249

Last season, he had 47 catches for eight touchdowns. It’s good at finding weak spots under cover. When playing with a scrambling quarterback, he needs to show better instincts after a route breaks down. Tools to become a better blocker.

4. Cade Stover, Ohio State, 6-4, 247

He was a two-way player from 2019 to 2021 before moving away from linebacker. Aim for the ball so he can rebound. Finishing the run with stiff hurdles and stiff arms. He needs to grow as a blocker, but it’s not a lack of toughness.

5. Theo Johnson, Penn State, 6-6, 259

He’s more of a possession target and red zone threat than a chunk gainer. His third-year starter never reached 350 yards receiving in a season. It’s comfortable in traffic, but the size should be better utilized. He was charged with simple assault after an alleged fight at a fraternity house.

Theo Johnson was a three-year starter at Penn State. Getty Images

6. Ben Sinnott, Kansas State, 6-4, 250

Tight end or fullback? If the former walk-on can average 14 yards per reception like he did in 2022-23, there’s no need for a label. Tracking the ball is a strength, especially on low balls where you value hand position. Penalties are too frequent.

7. AJ Varner, Michigan State, 6-6, 251

He calls himself “the best blocking tight end in the country.” Many teams with weak offensive lines would welcome a sixth in-line blocker for double teams and chipping rushers. Tend to drift and jump routes away from windows for safety.

8. Tanner McLachlan, Arizona State, 6-5, 244

In just two years, the Southern Utah transfer passed Rob Gronkowski for the most career catches by an Arizona tight end (79). Similar infinite energy too. There is a large window in the center, but the route will be rough.

9. Darin Holker, Colorado, 6-3, 234

The BYU transfer entered the 2023 season as the No. 1 ranked FBS tight end (64 catches, 767 yards, six touchdowns). He’s a big slot receiver with long arms and big hands. He became a 24-year-old novice after two years of religious missionary work.

Darin Holker had a breakout season at Colorado State in 2023. USA Today Sports

10. Tip Lyman, Illinois, 6-4. 271

He has just 59 career passing goals, but provides value as an extra blocker and kick cover. When your number is called, find the first down stick. Mature beyond his years. Even after winning the scholarship, he maintained his walk-on mentality of doing his job better than anyone else.

Oversleeping in the morning

Ben Sinnott, Kansas

He could be a No. 2 tight end who comes off the board in the second or third round, according to Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy. He won’t fit into every scheme, but some may like his football IQ and forced missed tackles.

fall rapidly

Eric Orr, Iowa

If he still has the agility he had at Michigan after knee and back surgery, he should be able to get open with some deft route running. Iowa State is a factory tight end, but there is a medical risk after 10 total games in 2022-2023. Too many drops.

the wonders of a small school

Mason Prine, Furman

He played basketball and football at NCAA Division II Ferris State and earned a degree in mechanical engineering before transferring. He had 32 catches at the FCS level, but made headlines in the Hula Bowl and East-West Shrine Bowl.