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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Cade Stover (TE – Ohio State)

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Cade Stover (TE – Ohio State)

The college football season is almost over, so FantasyPros will be taking a look at early NFL draft scouting reports before the combine in March. Here’s a look at Cade Stover.

2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Cade Stover

Cade Stover (TE – Ohio State)

6’4” – 255 lbs.

Background:

Four-star recruit who played running back, linebacker and basketball in high school. Was originally recruited as a linebacker but transitioned to defensive end before his freshman season – a year in which he appeared in four games before redshirting. Flipped from tight end to linebacker in 2020 and 2021, serving in a reserve role, and only became a full-time tight end this past year, when he put together a respectable line of 36-406-5 (11.3). Has been enjoying an even more productive fifth season with the Buckeyes, with 41-576-5 (14.0) as of the time of writing.

Positives:

Two-year starter with escalating production. Solidly-built tight end who really looks the part. Lines up all over the formation: plays H-Back, works from the slot, and plays inline, in roughly that order of frequency. Fast and explosive player who can threaten defenses down the seams. Physical player with impressive functional strength and a low pad level in the run game. Was asked to handle various different assignments. From an initial alignment in which he was split out wide, was frequently asked to come in motion and crack defenders on the back side. Able to fire out of his stance with explosiveness and create push by attacking the outside shoulder. Shows a good understanding of positioning. Works hard to line up opponents when stalking in the screen game; sets up with bent knees and a sufficient base. Fast enough to climb to the second level and engage. Can climb the ladder and high-point throws. No-nonsense approach as a ballcarrier; barrels ahead after the catch and can punish smaller defenders.

Negatives:

Not the tallest or longest-limbed tight end; doesn’t present the biggest target, and measurements at the combine could be important for his stock. Hasn’t been a major focal point of the team’s passing game like some of the other players in the class, and some of his production came on throws in which he was schemed wide-open. Doesn’t have a lot of tape where he’s posting up opponents in the red zone. Falls off of the occasional block by playing outside of his frame. Willingness to put his body on the line could lead to injuries.

Summary:

One of the most physically and athletically gifted tight ends in the class, he is still relatively new to the position but already shows impressive blocking ability and the speed to threaten down the seams in the passing game. Those traits could make him a potential starter at the next level, and so stands a chance of coming off the board on the second day, but certainly by the mid-rounds.

Projection: Round 3-4

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