Nicholas Boyle is the consummate team player, but also the good character type that the Blue Hens program has consistently produced over the years. Most high school players dream of playing at the major college level, but Boyle has been very happy with his decision to stay close to home. By the time he concluded his career, he became the 18th player in school history to record at least 100 receptions during a career, as his 101 catches set the Blue Hens record for tight ends and his 984 yards generated are second-most for any player who has occupied his position.
In the four years since Boyle left the confines of Wantage, New Jersey, his clutch receiving and impressive blocking skills saw him go on to start 36-of-41 games that he’s suited up for. While earning a chance to play for the Blue Hens is something he believes is an accomplishment in itself, the big short area target has been even more amazed at how fast he has progressed up the depth chart for them.
In Boyle, scouts recognize that he is that rare tight end who specialized in in-line blocking and also has reliable hands.
Boyle has the prototype tight end frame – thick, with excellent arm length, broad shoulders, large hands and muscular throughout. Even though he was primarily a blocker, he has natural hands, good arm extension and leaping ability and a powerful looking frame. He shows above average balance and functional quickness off the line of scrimmage, coming out of his breaks with no false steps.
The Blue Hens tight end has outstanding athletic ability and size for this position, showing above average agility, balance, speed, vision, change of direction moves and excellent hand/eye coordination. He uses power rather than quickness to get a release off the snap. It is very rare to see him held up, thanks to his impressive hand usage. He has the strength to power through the jam and adequate quickness, but is not the type that will surprise a defender with good speed, as he is best when he can release with his strength or his feet.
Boyle uses his hands effectively to escape the hold up at the line of scrimmage. He has enough foot quickness to elude and break free after the catch working in the short area, but lacks the burst and acceleration to take the ball to the house (only one catch for longer than 30 yards during his career).
Blocking is Boyle’s best asset. He is physical, aggressive and downright nasty blocking in-line. He does a good job of getting under the defender’s pads and shows nimble feet in his kick slide to protect the pass when working vs. the edge rushers. He even shows very good ability to climb to the second level and make the cut-off block, as he displays the vision to locate and neutralize moving targets.
With his initial step, the Delaware prospect does a nice job of locking on and sustaining at the line of scrimmage. When blocking in-line, he shows a good surge off the snap to make contact. He generates good pop and hand extension to sustain and adds to his resume with his ability to deep snap.
Nick Boyle NFL Scouting Combine measurables
6-4/268 (5.04 forty)
33 3/8-inch arm length
10 3/8-inch hands
30.5-inch vertical jump
112-inch broad jump
4.23 20 yard shuttle
11.65 60 yard shuttle
Dave-Te’ Thomas is a sports writer, talent evaluator and scouting personnel consultant for a majority of teams in the National Football League. Thomas runs a scouting information service called NFL Scouting Services and produces THE NFL Draft Report, a publication provided by league headquarters to the media in preparation for the NFL Draft.
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