Flex End ~ Beau SandLand ~ Montana State
BobCats ~ 6044/252
The Prototype would be about 6050/260 or so.
The "Tight Ends" whose Frames are better suited to be deployed in running Routes from all over the Formation, and who aren't especially renowned for their Blocking ~ though many are adept Chippers ~ I refer to as Flex Ends.
The Prototype would be about 6030/245 or so.
Those of either type who present legitimate Dual Threats ~ who can make a genuine Impact either as a Blocker or as a Receiver ~ are impossible to predict from Snap to Snap, and this renders them extraordinarily dangerous.
Conceivably even more dangerous and dynamic than either of these two types is one of my pet Positions: The WingBacks. I employ this ancient FootBall Term, one still in active use in many High Schools and Colleges, to refer to a Role so ethereal as to be almost imaginary: an Hybrid FullBack & Flex End ~ a Super Hybrid, if you will.
The Prototyped would be about 6000/250 or so.
The WingBack, optimally, would be a guy capable of Lead Blocking in the Run Game, Pass Blocking in the Passing Game, or splitting out and running Pass Patterns from SlotBack, Slot End, Split End, or Flanker. He could line up at any of those spots, or on either Wing, on the Line, or in the BackField. He could even go In Motion or run the Ball!!
Such a versatile, dynamic Player could have an explosive Impact on the Competitive LandScape.
The Game has reached a point in its Tactical History that is perfect for such a Player.
It awaits only for the NFL to realize the Opportunity.
Because Flex Ends operate as an Hybrid's Hybrid ~ part Tight End and part WideOut, with Blocking ~ the occasional Chip ~ being but a tertiary part of their Game ~ I break down their Attributes pretty much like I would those of a WideOut:
Separation: Getting Open. This encompasses Combat Skills & Fluidity to beat Press, Acceleration out'f the Blocks, Fluidity and Ricochet in navigating Traffic, Route Running Precision, the capacity to deceive Defenders, and Field Vision for Timing Seems and Open Zones. All other Aspects of a WideOut's Job Description are dwarfed by this one.
Catch Point Capacity: In Transit or Contested: Hands, WingSpan, Vertical Agility, Combat Skills, and Timing.
Yards After Catch are well and fine, but it seems to me that 90% of the Value of a Flex End and any WideOut is getting open and catching the Ball. Anyone who's read my Work extensively knows that I consider Blocking to be the Heart & Soul of FootBall, but that is a philosophical position, and I recognize that with most Philosophies, where it comes to Wide Receivers and Flex Ends...it's just Gravy. And so is Yards After Catch: Moving The Chains is What Wins.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Combat Skills
* Field Vision
Catch Point Capacity
Catch Point Capacity
* Combat Skills
* Vertical Agility
Catch Point Capacity: Impressive. Tremendous WingSpan. Good Hands. Solid Combat Skills and Tracking & Timing.
Blocking Bonus: Impressive for a Flex End. His Core Power and Combat Skills are good enough to play Tight End effectively, and his WingSpan is terrific, which bodes well for continued Improvement.
At this point, I am the only one on this beautiful Planet who bothers with such distinctions.
But it will be interesting to see what Time brings.
I like Beau SandLand. He's got a Flex End's Frame, but plays with a Tight End's Mentality ~ with a Tight End's Intensity.
He blocks very damned well for a Flex End, and has an Appetite for it. With that WingSpan of his, and his Core Power, I have little Doubt that he's going to develop into an Impact Player as a Flex Blocker ~ or even InLine.
As a Receiver, he is certainly not dynamic, but being dynamic is not what wins Championships, as so few seem to grasp.
What wins Championships, of course, is Moving The Chains.
What wins Championships is executing reliably, and while SandLand won't always get open, I foresee'm developing into the kind of Receiver who'll usually find a few inches of DayLight, and who'll usually catch the Ball.
That's a pretty damned good Combo, I think, and worth a MidRounder, as I see it.
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
None of this is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning!! Caveat Emptor!!