Position Capsule: Tight End

Purdue's tight ends have plenty of promise, but have yet to reach it. In a new-look offense, the Boilermaker tight ends will be essential. Boiler Sports Report gives a detialed look at the unit.

Where they stand— The greatest mystery within Purdue's new-look offense is the tight end position; more specifically, how it will be used and who it will be. John Shoop's system will incorporate plenty of play-action and motion, and it will require the tight end to have his hand in the dirt for the majority of plays.

Gabe Holmes brings the most experience at the position, having hauled in 25 receptions last season. Behind him though, the Boilermakers boast just four catches on the rest of the depth chart—all from junior Justin Sinz. The good news for Purdue is Gabe Holmes may be poised to finally have a breakout season and reach his potential. Additionally, redshirt freshman Carlos Carvajal may become a key playmaker in the offense with his tremendous size and abilities.

Biggest riser—There's a lot to like about what Carlos Carvajal did during the spring, and I'm not just saying that because he of his 6-foot-7 frame. Carvajal showed he can handle the starting job in this new system, and the coaching staff is high on him. He could be a key target for the Boilermakers this season.

Needs a big summer— We're all still waiting for Gabe Holmes to break out. The tight end was highly recruited out of high school and has a high ceiling, but has not quite met those expectations. Holmes showed progress in practice this spring, but has a lot more to prove—especially to a coaching staff which doesn't know much about him yet.

Quote to note—"We've got to get him to a point where he can be first-team all-conference and help this offense." –Purdue tight ends coach Gerad Parker, on senior Gabe Holmes.

Prediction— Putting aside the potential of Holmes and Carvajal, this prediction is about their coach, Gerad Parker. He's barely 30 years old and is the recruiting coordinator at a Big Ten university, and I believe the best has yet to come. Parker is a rising star in the coaching industry and is in for a very promising career.

Chris Emma has covered recruiting, college athletics and professional baseball for FOX Sports Next since 2009. Emma covered the Nebraska Cornhuskers and Northwestern Wildcats, and currently covers the Purdue Boilermakers. A Chicago native, he resides in West Lafayette.
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