Dec 28, 2013; Bronx, NY, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish tight end Troy Niklas (85) runs after a catch against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the second half of the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankees Stadium. Notre Dame Fighting Irish won the game 29-16. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Draft: Comparing Statistics Of Top Tight Ends

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Jan 1, 2014; Tampa, Fl, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz (86) against the LSU Tigers during the first quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014 NFL Draft is quickly approaching, and one positional group the Patriots may target is the tight ends. Rob Gronkowski is recovering from knee surgery, and right now, they have no legit insurance for the big man. This year’s class is full of talent at this position, so I figured I would take a look at the statistics of all the top prospects (based off of Mike Mayock’s top five prospects by position piece). Obviously stats can be misleading, but they always mean something, so doing a comparison may be helpful in determining who the Pats should go after.

Eric Ebron, North Carolina

2011: 10 catches, 207 yards, one touchdown

2012: 40 catches, 625 yards, four touchdowns

2013: 62 catches, 973 yards, three touchdowns

Career: 112 catches, 1,805 yards, eight touchdowns

Jace Amaro, Texas Tech

2011: 7 catches, 57 yards, two touchdowns

2012: 25 catches, 409 yards, four touchdowns

2013: 106 catches, 1,352 yards, seven touchdowns

Career: 138 catches, 1,818 yards, 13 touchdowns

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Washington

2011: 41 catches, 538 yards, six touchdowns

2012: 69 catches, 852 yards, seven touchdowns

2013: 36 catches, 450 yards, eight touchdowns

Career: 146 catches, 1,840 yards, 21 touchdowns

Troy Niklas, Notre Dame

2011: zero catches, zero yards, zero touchdowns

2012: five catches, 75 yards, one touchdown

2013: 32 catches, 498 yards, five touchdowns

Career: 37 catches, 573 yards, six touchdowns

C.J. Fiedorowicz, Iowa

2011: 16 catches, 167 yards, three touchdowns

2012: 45 catches, 433 yards, one touchdown

2013: 30 catches, 299 yards, six touchdowns

Career: 91 catches, 899 yards, 10 touchdowns

Statistically speaking, Jenkins is the clear cut winner. He has amassed the most touchdowns of all five prospects, the most yards, and the most catches. But as I said at the beginning of this piece, stats can be misleading. I don’t believe for one second that Jenkins is a better prospect than both Amaro, and Ebron. But because he produced so well in college, I think that definitely helps his case. Someone that doesn’t do anything in the college ranks will always have a question mark above his head, no matter how talented they are. Ebron will probably be long gone before the Patriots can select him, which will most likely leave them a choice between Amaro, and Jenkins. I personally like Amaro a little more, but I am biased because I watched a lot of him in college.

Which of these tight ends would you want the Pats to take this May? Sound off in the comments section with your answers!

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Tags: Austin Seferian-jenkins C.J. Fiedorowicz Eric Ebron Jace Amaro New England Patriots NFL Draft Troy Niklas

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