Jaguars' Thomas won't try to measure up to Broncos' numbers
by Michael Hurcomb |
New Jaguars tight end Julius Thomas told he has already begun working with quarterback Blake Bortles.

"It’s exciting, that first time you get to work out with your new quarterback," he said. "We’ve got a couple thousand more reps to go, but I’m really looking forward to that chemistry and growing with that entire offense."

The expectations will be elevated for Thomas, who is coming off two great seasons with the Broncos. However, Thomas isn't out to prove he can have the same production without Peyton Manning throwing him passes.

"I think I’ve got to be a little bit cautious on trying to prove so much," he said. "I think I’ve just got to go out there and work my hardest, and do everything I can to win every route, and see what happens. I don’t want to set a goal of 'I gotta have these numbers.' I’m just going to work my hardest every day, do everything I can to become a better player, and do everything I can to help out my team and this offense."

Thomas is also confident he will be able to coexist on offense with veteran tight end Marcedes Lewis, who has been with the team since 2006.

"I don’t think we’ll have any problem playing together," he said. "I was actually talking to him this weekend. I ran into him; we both live in L.A. He’s a really good guy. I’ve met him a couple times before. We both have the same marketing company, so we know the same people, and people that I respect speak very highly of him. I think we complement each other very well. There are going to be things that he can teach me, and I can learn from him."

Chip Kelly envisions 'big jump' for TE Zach Ertz
by Larry Hartstein |
Eagles coach Chip Kelly believes he can get a lot more out of tight end Zach Ertz, who caught 58 passes for 702 yards and three touchdowns last year. "I still think there's a big jump that can happen between Year 2 and 3," Kelly said, per the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Ertz played just half the snaps last season because he didn't block as well as tight end Brett Celek. With wideout Jeremy Maclin's departure via free agency, Philly could lean more on Ertz's receiving skills in 2015.

Sean Payton: TE Josh Hill 'is a player we value a lot'
by Larry Hartstein |
Saints coach Sean Payton on Wednesday talked up tight end Josh Hill, who should get more opportunities with the trade of Jimmy Graham to Seattle. "Josh Hill is a player we value a lot," Payton said, per the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Hill, 24, is a 6-5, 250-pounder who caught five touchdowns last season. He finished with 14 catches for 176 yards while playing every game.

Hill and Benjamin Watson, 34, are the team's top tight ends following Graham's departure.

Report: TE Kellen Davis signs with Jets
by Larry Hartstein |
The Jets signed blocking tight end Kellen Davis to a one-year deal, reports Yahoo Sports. Davis, 29, spent last season with the Lions, appearing in six games.

Chiefs have high expectations for TE Travis Kelce
by Dave Peters |
Although Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce led the team in receiving in 2014, head coach Andy Reid has even higher expectations for him in 2015, according to the Kansas City Star.

Reid believes that the best is yet to come for Kelce.

“You’d think the natural progression would be even more and better, and he was pretty good last year,” Reid said. “He’s tremendously talented, loves to play the game. He’s like a little kid out there. He loves to play.”

Despite the high praise from Reid, the coach knows that there is still room for improvement for the 25-year-old.

“You could see the progress every week in a positive direction,” Reid said. “We kept adding to his menu there, so the plays we wanted to dial up in formations and motions, the running backs and tight ends, they have to know what they’re doing with those. So he continually got better with that as time went on."

After recording no stats as a rookie due to being placed on injured reserve, Kelce tallied 67 receptions for 862 yards and five touchdowns in 2014, all were team-highs.

Dolphins Joe Philbin excited about WR Kenny Stills and TE Jordan Cameron
by Dave Peters |
Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin is excited about the overhaul of the receiving corps, notably the additions of tight end Jordan Cameron and wide receiver Kenny Stills, according to the team's official website.

Philbin started off by complimenting Cameron.

“I would say the one thing that (Cameron brings)?would be big skill if I can just throw out that term,”?Philbin said. “He’s a little bit bigger than the tight ends we’ve had. He still runs very very well. I think that’s maybe a little bit of a different dimension. I think the down the middle of the field potentially you might see us attack the middle of the field a hair more. We’re excited about him.” 

The head coach went on to talk about how Stills fit into the Dolphins' offense.

“We thought he was a really good scheme fit in our offense,”?Philbin said. “I thought he had good production. A couple of things that stood out, we kind of a did a study of receivers in the league that had at least 50 catches and one of the things we liked about him, I think he was targeted about 84 times and I think he had 63 receptions. So he was second, I believe, in the league in terms of, if you throw him the ball, he’s going to catch it. We liked the fact that, when the quarterbacks threw him the ball, a high percentage of the time there were completed passes. That was one thing. We thought he was productive on third down. Statistically, conversions on third down. He fit what we do. I thought he’s a good route runner. He has good hands. His speed is good. I thought schematically he was a good fit.” 

Chargers to get TE Ladarius Green more involved
by Dave Peters |
Chargers head coach Mike McCoy plans on getting tight end Ladarius Green more involved in the offense, reports UT San Diego.

"There are things we can do more with him," McCoy said. "He worked extremely hard. I don't think it was anything he was physically doing out there. I think it was a matter of philosophically what we were doing with the players we had. We got into the 11 personnel game a lot, three receivers and a tight end. When you have the three receivers we had, and you've got (tight end) Antonio Gates, (you'd have to) take the back out of the game. We need to use him more."

Green was limited to only 19 receptions on 24 targets in 2014. Entering his fourth year in the league, the 24-year-old has totaled 40 receptions for 658 yards and three touchdowns.

General manager Tom Telesco echoed McCoy's sentiments about getting Green into the mix.

It's a good problem to have that we have enough guys," Telesco said. "Philip (Rivers) spreads the ball around. Basically, the open guy gets the ball; he doesn't force it to anybody. But Ladarius has a lot of talent. We'll get him in the mix. We will. He's too good not to."

Report: TE Kellen Davis to visit Jets
by Dave Peters |
Tight end Kellen Davis is visiting with the Jets on Tuesday, reports NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport.

Davis, who spent last season with the Lions, has also played for the Seahawks and Bears. Over his seven-year career he has hauled in 50 receptions for 561 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Bengals' Lewis doesn't rule out bringing back Jermaine Gresham
by Shawn Krest |
Free agent tight end Jermaine Gresham may still return to the Bengals, coach Marvin Lewis said. 

Meeting with the media Tuesday, at the NFL Owners Meetings, Lewis said Gresham had been talking to defensive end Michael Johnson, who returned to the Bengals after spending a year in Tampa Bay. 

"I had a premonition that this would occur with Jermaine," Lewis said, per, "because Jermaine is a homebody and they all watched what happened with Michael."

"He’s a man of many, many, many, many, many, many, many moods," Lewis said. "But one he’s consistent with is, 'I’m loyal to you, coach.'"

Ravens will learn more on Dennis Pitta's hip injury this summer
by Jason Butt |
Ravens tight end Dennis Pitta's future could be decided this summer. 

Speaking at the NFL owners meetings, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said there isn't an update on Pitta's future but that the organization will learn more about his status this summer, via WNST.

Pitta dislocated and fractured his hip early during the 2014 season, suffering the same injury he sustained during Baltimore's training camp in 2013. The injury is significant enough that there is a chance Pitta decides to retire. 

"In the end it's going to be up to Dennis," Harbaugh said, via The Baltimore Sun

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