Team 134 Preview: Tight Ends

In this next installment, we take a look at another position group that will help the Wolverines out tremendously in the passing game, the tight ends.

Just looking at the three-deep depth chart for the tight ends, there’s a lot to like about this group of players in both the passing and running game.

The guy I see having the most impact at this position is sophomore Devin Funchess, who I see having a breakout season after a solid campaign as a freshman. Funchess possesses all of the traits you would want in a pass-catching tight end. He’s big, fast, and has great hands. His production should see a significant spike this year with the pro-style offense and I also would not be surprised to see him play a little bit of outside receiver.

Sophomore tight end Devin Funchess

For as much of an impact as I think Funchess will have in the passing game, I think that A.J. Williams, another true sophomore, can be just as key in the run game. At 6-6, 265 pounds, having Williams out there is almost like having another offensive lineman out on the field. Michigan will look to implement more of a power run game this season with guys like Derrick Green, Fitz Toussaint, and the other group of backs, so run blocking will be key to the success of this offense, and I believe Williams will be a huge help in that regard.

Behind these two guys, you’ll likely see freshman Jake Butt out there quite a bit as well. Butt’s skill set is a very nice combination of Funchess and Williams. The quarterbacks reportedly built a nice connection with him on the field during spring practice, so I would not be shocked at all to see Jake Butt on the field quite a bit this season.

Another freshman, Khalid Hill, could be in the mix for some playing time as well, but unless one of the above guys gets injured, he probably ends up redshirting. He’s a bit of a tight end/fullback ‘tweener, so I don’t expect him to see the field this season.

As the Wolverines transition to a more balanced, well rounded offense, they have some versatility to play around with at the tight end position. The group of guys they have will help out quarterback Devin Gardner immensely and will also help to stabilize the run game. Michigan fans should be exited to see the tight ends on the field in 2013.

You can follow me on Twitter @abroome92 or our website @BBlueRecruiting.

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