The Eagles are buttoned up at every skill position on the offensive side of the ball, which includes tight end.
Dallas Goedert is entering his first year as the primary starter and figures to have a true breakout campaign. Behind him, there are a few question marks but there’s enough potential with the young talent to have optimism for the group moving forward.
Let’s breakdown the strengths and weaknesses of the tight end position as we head into the 2022 NFL season.
TE1: Dallas Goedert
Since entering the league back in 2018, Goedert has been one of the most complete tight ends in the game. Per Pro Football Focus, Goedert has graded out as a top-10 tight end each of his NFL seasons. 2021 was his best year to date, posting a PFF overall grade of 90.7 and a receiving grade of 91.1, both ranking second among 70 qualifying tight ends. On the year, he totaled 56 receptions for 830 yards and 4 touchdowns.
Goedert improved in nearly every facet of the game last season. He posted a career-high in YAC, racking up 415 yards while averaging 6.7 yards after the catch. His contested catch numbers improved dramatically, going from a career 45.4% contested catch percentage to a 66.7 mark in 2021. Not to mention Goedert forced 18 missed tackles on the year, another career-high for the tight end. And to top things off, quarterbacks posted a 120.2 passer rating when targeting Goedert and he managed to rack up 49 first downs throughout the season.
There’s not much to nitpick in Goedert’s game. He has all the makings of a future All-Pro at the position.
The one area that Goedert needs to clean up a bit in 2022 is the drops. He had 6 last season and posted a drop percentage of 8.8%. Those were both career-worsts for Goedert, but he shouldn’t have too much trouble fixing the issue. A lot of his drops last season were simply concentration drops.
Now that Goedert is the unquestioned TE1 in Philly, there’s no reason to think he won’t be elite yet again in 2022. The depth behind him, however, is a different story.
Depth behind Goedert: Jack Stoll, Tyree Jackson, Grant Calcaterra
The battle for the TE2 spot will be an interesting storyline to follow throughout training camp this year. Jack Stoll is likely the front runner, but we can’t rule out Tyree Jackson or the rookie Grant Calcaterra.
Stoll was a great blocking tight end last season. His 84.2 PFF pass blocking grade was the best mark by any tight end last end. The 58.2 run blocking grade Stoll posted leaves a little to be desired, but he certainly has the ability to be a stout blocking tight end for the remainder of his career.
On the receiving end of things, Stoll didn’t show much as a rookie. He recorded 4 catches on the year for 22 yards. His 41.7 receiving grade from PFF was the second-worst mark among tight ends in 2021. Stoll was never much of a receiver during his college days, so his struggles to make an impact in the pros shouldn’t surprise anyone.
Stoll’s lack of receiving ability leaves the door open for Jackson and Calcaterra, both of whom possess real potential as receiving threats at the tight end position.
Jackson probably would have become the defacto TE2 had he not gotten injured last season. He returned in Week 18, only to tear his ACL after recording 3 receptions and a touchdown in his lone start of the year. His timetable for return is still up in the air.
Calcaterra is the real wild card of the group. Physically, he looks like your prototypical tight end in today’s NFL. A 6-foot-4, 242-pounds receiving threat who has real yards after the catch ability.
If it weren’t for serious concussion concerns, Calcaterra probably would have been a day two selection in this year’s NFL Draft. If he can stay healthy, the Eagles may have gotten a real steal with this one.
In saying that, I believe Calcaterra will be the primary TE2 this year if all goes according to plan. He’s the best receiver of the bunch outside of Goedert and could once again give the Eagles offense a great one-two punch at the tight end position.
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