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Comments about ‘BYU football: Cougar tight ends hope to finally end bad soap opera’

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Published: Thursday, March 21 2013 9:00 p.m. MDT

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Vladhagen
Salt Lake City, UT

The tight ends really need to make an identity for themselves this year. I do not think it was coincidence though that the last year BYU had really good tight ends was also when Robert Anae was almost done ( for the first go round ) at BYU. I do think though that last year Friel made a pretty good showing. Not world class, but certainly decent.

stanfunky
Salt Lake City, UT

Robert Anae is the problem, not the solution, for the TE's at the Y. Go with Friel and have everyone else fight for backup reps. He's got the best hands and most discipline.

Cougar Claws
Lindon, UT

Not true about Friel. Yes he made some good plays last year but he made plenty of mistakes. I don't buy that he's head and shoulders better than the rest of the TEs. Holt made the switch to defense so I guess he is a moot point, but I have seen Richard Wilson, Marcus Mathews and Devin Mahina make just as spectacular of plays as Friel has over their careers. Wilson and Mathews are better receivers with better speed, and Mahina is a bigger body at 6'7". I am not saying this to minimize Friel because he has done good things to but too say he is better is just false. If anything I think the problem is that they are all good and they can all contribute and none of them have ever been head and shoulders better than the others. I think a lot of that has to do with them being so varied in their different skill sets. All the TEs were better when Jake Heaps was the QB. The way I see the TEs is that they are all part of a vast arsenal of targets that a good QB can utilize.

Wayne Rout
El Paso, TX

Before the tight end can be a factor, he must be thrown the ball. It has seemed that every years or so the tight end just disappears from the offensive game plan. This is true way back into the Edwards era. Let's hope that this is a tight end year.

Vladhagen
Salt Lake City, UT

The tight ends were truly a factor in the game when Heaps was QB. That is why they caught no touchdowns for 14 straight games or something. I hate to say it, but I am pretty sure that consecutive TE touchdown passes were thrown by Max Hall to Andrew George, then Riley Nelson to Marcus Matthews against USU. Heaps had no TE td passes, so to say they were better with Heaps is not really a valid claim.

I-am-I
South Jordan, UT

I seem to remember Friel having games where he dropped like 4 or 5 passes last year. It's somewhat unfortunate to see Holt switch sides. He was the best blocker. It's sad because tight end is such an under appreciated position, but really should probably be one of the focuses of your team.

dustman
Nampa, ID

For the most part, college teams do not utilize the TE. Coach Edwards made sure the TE's were a part of the scheme. If you do not go out of the way to make the TE part of the scheme, they will be mediocre. Friel did the best he could last year. He did make some mistakes, but last year we never knew if the ball was ever going to be thrown. There was such an emphasis on the running QB these past few years, our receivers suffered for it.

toosmartforyou
Farmington, UT

I watched in horror as Friel dropped passes that seemed pretty routine. I chalked it up to him having a bad game. Unfortunately, it turned into a bad season. I hope either he has improved or there is a better player to replace him. His passing-catching was awful last year. Sorry, but it's true.

Go Cougars!!

wahului
Stockton, CA

NO receiver in this program was better with Jake Heaps throwing the ball everywhere but to them. In 2010, nearly ALL of them; backs, wideouts, tight and slot looked like they had wooden hands. I think the shock of the occasional ball actually getting to them was such an unexpected anomaly that they weren't usually able to adjust their thinking to "catch" mode in time to make the adjustment.

Cougar Claws
Lindon, UT

Re: dustman

I would second that. For the most part if you look at most offensive schemes around the country, the TE isn't the leading receiver on the team, the RECEIVERS are! There have also been games where the RB is the leading receiver. What that indicates is that you have a QB who either won't or can't take shots down field. While TEs and RBs can certainly contribute in the pass game and help move they chains they shouldn't be your leading receivers. Ideally in the pass game, the RB should be a check down guy after the QBs first or second read. The role that the TE should play is that he should be a safety valve like the RB, either to help convert on third down or otherwise move the chains if the receivers are covered down field. This also helps open up the run game. You could probably look at your slot receiver the same way. JD Falslev, in a lot of ways, has kind of been the "TE" in that respect. Point is, people shouldn't necessarily flip out if the TE isn't the team's leading receiver.

BlueNtheFace
Rancho Cucamonga, CA

I vote for Mahina. His only weakness was his hands in the past. I see, and have heard/read, that this has improved greatly. He's very fast and physical and runs great routes. Friel and Wilson's route-running was pretty shaky. Let's see how they do come fall. It sounds like Friel has the inside track however.

Go BYU!

Mildred in Fillmore
Salt Lake City, UT

We have the best group of tight ends in the country.

BigCougar
Bountiful, UT

Friel got shaky as the season progressed and pretty soon seemed to have a hard time concentrating on the ball and dropped easy passes. Some of that might be due to Riley's unpredictable nature and his horrible accuracy. Receivers never knew where the ball was going to be thrown to (behind them, at their feet, way over their heads, etc). It seemed as the season went along that Friel started dropping more and more passes.

Each seemed to bring a little something different to the mix. Holt was a good blocker and adequate target over the middle (just a tad slow). Wilson had great speed and did well catching passes in the seam, Friel was decent blocking and catching but not exceptional at either, Mahina was a nice big target over the middle and down the seam and seemed especially good in the red zone.

I can see Friel being a good H-back in place of a traditional fullback (who is smaller and slower). Having a big target like Friel as another receiving option at H-back would be great.

Stgeorgebyu
St. Georg, UT

Cougar Claws: uh the tight ends were not better with Heaps. They did not get one touchdown when he ran the offense, not one. Don't rewrite history.
Stanfunky; what proof do you have of your comment that Anae is the problem? You cant just throw that out there.
Mildred; your not fooling anyone, go play on the UTE sights and leave us alone.
Edwards has often told the story that it was his wife who would remind him to use the tight end more. In the big ten its a run 1st pass second that is why they don't use them. In the pistol offense the tight end isn't used much because they want speed at a wider spread. That's why I think it will go to the fastest one next year in this offense that Anae wants to use. If you have speed and height they still use the tight end in the pros even with the new offenses.

Rockarolla
West Jordan, UT

I like the switch with Austin Holt. He is strong and speedy. Much more speed than Kafusi and Peck. Peck may be more suited for an interior line position because of his lack of explosive speed. Peck is a extremely smart player who could really help the interior of the cougar line. Both Holt and Peck are Bingham boys who have the talent to succeed. Good luck to all the tight ends. I hope they all can make a contribution.

Cougar Claws
Lindon, UT

Re: stgeorgebyu

Lol, I can't believe I just did this but I wanted to find out for myself. Anyway if you guys are interested here are the TE stats over the past three years:

Jake Heaps career passes to tight ends: 62 of 75 for 723 yards and 0 TDs.

Riley Nelson career passes to tight ends: 62 of 98 for 780 yards and 6 TDs.

James Lark career passes to tight ends: 6 of 10 for 99 yards and 0 TDs.

Taysom Hill career passes to tight ends: 10 of 14 for 119 yards and 2 TDs.

A quick note is that this also includes Riley Nelson in 2009 and in 2006 when he was a Utah State Aggie. So I guess it depends on what you mean by "better." If you mean efficiency wise, Jake Heaps was more efficient with fewer snaps. In terms of scoring efficiency I suppose Riley Nelson used the TE in the red zone more (blue zone sorry).

But let's not compare Riley Nelson as a passer to Jake Heaps, seriously. Jake certainly lived below his potential, but Riley Nelson was never a D-1 quarterback, just a guy who tried hard to be.

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