There is perhaps no more settled position group for the University of Missouri going into spring practice than at tight end, but how those players are utilized going forward will be interesting to watch.
“They are going to be called upon a lot and play a number of positions,” Missouri coach Barry Odom told the Mizzou Network. “We have the ability, with the three guys at that spot, to utilize them on the line of scrimmage and in the backfield and lined up in a number of different roles that can give us an advantage.”
Culkin, a 6-foot-6, 245-pounder caught 16 passes for 139 yards and a touchdown in 10 games last season after catching 20 passes for 174 yards and a touchdown the previous season.
Reese, a 6-5, 250-pounder, caught 15 passes for 126 yards over 12 games. He had one catch, for 12 yards, during the 2014 season.
Blanton is a 6-6, 250-pounder who appeared in eight games during his debut season in 2014 but did not record a reception.
That trio should get plenty of work this spring. Odom has stated his desire to run the football, something the Tigers struggled with last season, so it is reasonable to expect the tight ends will be used as blockers in the run game — either anchored to the offensive line or lined up as fullbacks.