NFC East Position Breakdown: tight ends

<b>Each week leading up to the season, <i>EaglesInsider</i> will break down all the positions for every team in the NFC EAST. This week: Tight Ends. The NFC East lacks talent at the TE position, with guys like Zeron Flemingster, and the ancient Chad Lewis. However, young studs like Jeremy Shockey, and L.J Smith should put a little more spunk in the NFC East tight end position. Let's get started.

Name: Zeron Flemingster Team: Washington Years Pro: 4 6'4 245

Zeron Flemingster is not a good tight end. He grabbed just ten receptions last season, 18 the year before, and just 29 catches in his four-year career. He only started seven games last year, because of injury. He did manage to bring down 2 touchdown receptions for the Redskins in 2002, but that surely will not be enough to make him a number a tight end. A better way to describe this little known tight end is by comparing him to former Eagle Jeff Thomason. He is used on goal line situations, and short yardage. And the one thing he is good at, is getting good yardage on the catch. He averages 12 yards per catch during his career, which is the only stat that is decent on his record. Overall, the Skins better find a free agent, maybe a trade or pick somebody off waivers to replace Flemingster, no matter how good the guy is on goal line situations, he will NEVER be a number one TE.
Dallas Cowboy tight ends

It is very difficult to find a number one tight end on the Boys' roster. Last year they had two tight ends grab over 20 receptions (Campbell, McGee.) and one other pulled down 17 (Whalen). The Cowboys used a tight end by committee system, and have been fairly successful. The Boys, unlike other teams, always have a tight end with fresh legs on the field ready to block, or catch a bullet from the quarterback. The Boys have depth at the TE position to make sure they are not hurt badly if a player is injured. New coach Bill Parcells may move these players around however. He may put some of the players on the line, or a full time player on special teams. With the mind Parcells has, only time will be able to tell. Overall, the Boys have a good-looking crop of tight ends. They have depth, and a couple good rookies waiting on the bench. We'll just have to wait and see how the Boys tight end corpse turns out.
Name: Jeremy Shockey Team: New York Years Pro: 2 H: 6'5 W:252lbs

As soon as Jeremy Shockey got done bowling over the Texan secondary in a Giants Pre-Season game, expectations in New York soared. Shockey certainly did not disappoint. The young gun grabbed down 74 receptions, for 894 yards and two touchdowns in 2002. His efforts last season (his rookie year) gave him a reputation throughout the league for being, a great receiver from the tight end spot, a great talker, a great blocker, and a great power tight end. Shockey was simply amazing in 2002. In my opinion, Shockey made the biggest rookie impact in New York since Lawrence Taylor. The scary thing is Shockey is only going to get better. I think overall we are looking at one of the best Tight Ends in the last 20 years. The only thing New York fans should worry about is how much film they have in their camera, when Shockey is playing.
Name: Chad Lewis Team: Philadelphia Years Pro: 6 H: 6'6 W: 252lbs

Chad Lewis is the number one tight end for the Eagles, as of now. The problem is that he is aging. His numbers went down since his monster season in 2000 in which he snatched 69 receptions. However, in 2001 he grabbed 41 passes, a dramatic change from 2002, and in 02 he grabbed 42, also a dramatic change. His receiving yards have gone down as well. In 2000 he had 735 yards in catches. In 01 he had just 422 yards, and in 03, he brought down just 398 yards. The numbers don't lie, and they prove that Chad Lewis, has passed his prime. However, Rutgers star L.J Smith, frequently compared to Jeremy Shockey, was drafted with the Eagles second round selection in this years draft. He grabbed over 50 receptions last year for Rutgers, and is waiting at any given time, to take the spot of Lewis. Look for Philadelphia to run many two tight end sets this season, to ease Smith into the starting role.
Overall Outlook

Once again, the Giants reign supreme at this position, their tight ends are the best in the NFC East. Jeremy Shockey rules over the no-name Zeron Flemingster, and the Cowboys no-name Tight Ends. Chad Lewis, the dinosaur, is not even close, and with L.J Smith, only time will tell how much he can produce. This is getting very scary Eagle fans; the Giants have the best running backs in the NFC East, the best wide receiving corpse in the NFC East, and now, the best tight ends in the NFC East.

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