Craig Stevens, TE, California (1 Viewer)

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Assessing the winners, losers at scouting combine

Surprises

Craig Stevens, TE, California: Stevens is considered one of the better blocking tight ends in the draft but a minimal receiving threat. His 40 time of 4.65 seconds and outstanding pass catching workout now have many rethinking that opinion.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/football/nfl/02/27/combine.analysis/1.html

Cal TE Craig Stevens Opens Eyes

I've now heard the name of Cal tight end Craig Stevens more times here in Indianapolis than I had all through the 2007 college football season.

There seems to be a growing consensus that if you're a team looking for a tight end who blocks first and catches passes second, Stevens is your man. He put up 27 reps on the 225-pound bench press, making him the strongest tight end at this year's Combine, and he's one of the few tight ends around who actually considers himself primarily a blocker. Coaches love tight ends who love to block.

The only question is just how high a draft pick a blocking tight end is really worth. Yes, Stevens can catch passes; he's scoring a 21-yard touchdown against UCLA in the photo. But he never caught more than three passes in any one game in his college career, and most teams think a tight end who's purely a blocker shouldn't be a first-day pick. But the team that drafts Stevens will have a guy who can step in and contribute in short yardage immediately.

http://sports.aol.com/fanhouse/2008/02/23/cal-te-craig-stevens-opens-eyes/

Projected Round Middle 6, 7: TE Craig Stevens (California): Good in-line blocker who can make the tough catch.

http://www.nfldraftscout.com/ratings/nflcombineprofile.php?pyid=15223

All the buzz has been about Dustin Keller, but he seems a bit undersized to me. This guy sounds like a great all rounder. At 6'5 258lbs he has the size, blocking ability and hands to be a great tight end in our system.
 

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The Saints need a guy like him.
 
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Nevimeister

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Scout.com Player Evaluation:

STRENGTHS

Competitiveness
Hands and Concentration
Route-Running Skills

AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT

Elusiveness with Catch
Strength

An impressive football player. Has a good frame to add bulk and strength, runs well and is very solid athlete. I felt he had wide receiver type hands and the quickness and speed to threaten up the seam. As a blocker, wasn't either punishing or a big finisher, but was smart and efficient. Positions after contact (brings his feet around) and stays with blocks. Very good feet and balance. Solid H back prospect with 3-4 round league draft potential.

Biography:
2006: A second-team All-Pac-10 selection ... honored with the team's Cort Majors Captain Award ... key run-blocker and pass-protector in the Bear attack, helped Cal to 10 100-yard rushing efforts and two 300-yard passing games ... listed as the No. 1 tight end for every game (did not start each game due to three-receiver sets) ... seven of his catches were on third or fourth down, all for first downs ... caught three passes for 51 yards against USC, including a 25-yard reception ... tallied two receptions for 16 yards against Arizona ... had two catches for 61 yards against Washington ... caught three passes against Oregon, including his only touchdown of the season, a two-yard grab on the Bears first drive of the game ... also had three catches for 40 yards against Oregon State, including a career-long 29-yard reception ... snagged a 26-yard reception in the Holiday Bowl win over Texas A&M ...

http://california.scout.com/a.z?s=166&p=8&c=1&nid=3225897
 
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Craig Stevens, TE -- California

"He ran faster than expected at the combine and improved his stock even more at his pro day by improving his vertical jump by five inches, touching the tape at 32.5. He really impressed scouts with an outstanding pass-catching workout, something he was not known for at Cal. Stevens is surging up draft boards and heading into the early part of round three."

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/football/nfl/03/14/risers.sliders/1.html

I doubt he'll go in round 3, especially given the draft projections on Ben Patrick (and a pass ctaching tight end at that). I'd love to snag Stevens in the 5th
 

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