Ole Miss Football: Who Replaces Evan Engram at Tight End?
Evan Engram was an All-Everything tight end for the past four years for the Rebels. Who steps up and replaces him in the Ole Miss line up?
Ole Miss enjoyed the luxury of having an All-SEC caliber tight end for the past four years. Evan Engram is statistically the best tight end to ever play at Ole Miss. However, his tenure has ended and the task of replacing him has now come.
The Rebels did not bring in any tight ends in this year’s recruiting class. Although last year they signed three “four” stars. Somewhere among those three players and two other tight ends on the roster is the new starter.
Ty Quick-Sr. 6’3 257lbs.-Terry, MS.
Engram was not the only tight end to leave after last season. Both Taz Zettergren and Hunter Thurley saw playing time and both have moved on. So Quick is the lone experienced tight end on the team. The senior has only play sparsely and he will still have to earn playing time this year. However, it helps having gone threw as many Spring practices as he has.
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Octavious Cooley-Soph. 6’3 246lbs.-Laurel, MS.
Out of the three highly rated four star TEs that Ole Miss signed during the 2016 signing class, Octavious Cooley was that highest rated.
His high school receiving number were impressive but with the amount of seasoned player at TE last year he couldn’t find significant time on the field. However, look for him to compete for game action.
Gabe Angel-Fr. 6’3 238lbs.-Lebanon, TN.
One of the benefit that Gabe Angel has over the other two tight ends from the 2016 signing class is that he will be going through his second Spring practice. He was an early enrollee last year. That will be a benefit to the Tennessee native as he tries to take over for Engram.
According to OleMissSports.com, the consensus four star catches the ball well. In both Coach Hugh Freeze and Offensive Coordinator Phil Longo’s offense, a TE that can catch the ball downfield is a huge asset to the success of the team. It was that ability as a receiver that separated Engram from most of the other tight ends in the country.
Jacob Mathis-Fr. 6’4 233lbs.-Tampa, FL.
Possibly the most athletic of the bunch is this freshman from Berkeley Prep in Tampa Fl. Jacob Mathis was selected an Under Armour All American out of high school. He is the third member of last year’s recruiting class.
His natural athletic ability will force the coaches to find a way to use him. My feeling is that he will use this Spring to showcase his nature ability. Don’t be surprised if you hear his name called a lot this year.
Dawson Knox-Soph. 6’4 243lbs.-Nashville, TN.
Many times in order to get on the field you have to play on special teams. Dawson Knox found his way on the field during a few games last year. He played in six games and even recorded a tackle on special teams.
Although, according to OleMissSports.com he impressed the coaches during last Spring’s practice. He appears to have good ball skills and good speed. I don’t know if he will replace Engram as the starter but he looks like he will continue to get playing time.
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To expect one player to come in and replace the production of an All American tight end is unrealistic. However, there is a chance that the right combination of these contenders could collectively put up Engram type numbers.
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