Throughout the summer, National Scout Jon Ledyard, Assistant Director Joe Marino and Scouting Director Kyle Crabbs will be conducting summer assessments on 99 notable senior prospects. Of these 99 seniors, the 33 most prominent will be covered by all three analysts.
Of the remaining 66, each of the three analysts has “drafted” 22 of them to scout exclusively.
This serves as the foundation for our 2018 draft assessments.
Scout: Joe Marino
Name: Mike Gesicki
Position: Tight End
Date of Birth: 10/03/1995
College: Penn State
High School: Southern Regional (NJ)
Games Played: 39
Games Started: 23
Team Captain: No
Production: 72 catches, 918 yards, 6 touchdowns, 12.8 yards per catch
High School: Consensus 4-star prospect. Under Armour All-America, all-state and first-team All-Shore honors as a senior. Played in the U.S. Army All-American Game. Ended his high school career as Southern Regional’s all-time leading scorer in basketball. Chose Penn State over offers from Ohio State, Florida State, Miami, Wisconsin and others.
College: Advertising and Public Relations major. Set PSU record for TE receptions in single season (48). 2016 All-Big Ten second team by the media, honorable mention by the coaches. 2017 Preseason John Mackey Award Watchlist.
Strengths: Excels challenging the defense vertically. Terrific ball tracking skills and ability to adjust to the trajectory of the ball. Has an alpha mentality at the catch point and routinely wins in contested situations, often making acrobatic receptions. Strong hands to squeeze the football away from his body with arms extending in any direction. Knows how to high point the football and win above the rim. Works hard to sell his routes. Long strides as a runner that eats away turf.
Weaknesses: Has clunky footwork changing directions and lacks flexibility throughout his frame. Doesn’t offer top end burst and speed. Lacks body control and balance as a blocker. Upper and lower body fight each other when blocking and it robs him of power, causing him to over-extend.
Summary: Penn State tight end Mike Gesicki is coming off a historic season where he broke the Penn State single-season records for receptions and yardage by a tight end and tied the touchdown record. His ability to challenge defenses vertically with outstanding ball skills meshes perfectly with quarterback Trace McSorley’s willingness to test man coverage at all levels of the field.
Gesicki showcases strong hands as he plucks the football out of the air with arms extended and is capable of handling balls thrown at him with tempo. He does well to settle under the football and compete at the catch point. While he isn’t the most fluid athlete, he works hard to sell his breaks and create separation. He is outstanding at finding space against zone coverage and working the seam.
My hope for Gesicki as a senior is to demonstrate improved skills as a blocker where his lack of technique leaves him struggling to exchange power in the trenches despite outstanding effort. It would also be to his benefit to showcase a more fluid athletic profile if possible.
Gesicki has starter traits in the NFL and is an ideal fit for today’s spread-style offenses while still able to contribute in-line.
Predicted Value Range: Day Two